Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Running and Pregnant (With #4)

Katie (33 weeks, 6 days pregnant) with Rick (husband) and our 3-year-old

I am 33 weeks and 6 days pregnant with our fourth baby on this Fourth of July!  I'm due with him 4 days before I turn 40!  Today I ran the Firecracker 5K in Huntsville, AL.  This is a great race for families.  It is the ONLY race I know of that offers free childcare!  It's put on by Morningside Baptist Church, and their little nursery had 2 little ones today.  Our newly-turned 3-year-old was one of them (she's being carried on my back in the picture above).  Our 2 bigger kids are not quite capable of watching her at races yet, and they are at their first overnight camp for the next few days.  Having a week with just one has seemed like a luxury!

We could not pass up the chance to start our Fourth of July with this race, and I am glad we did!  We headed over there around 6:30 a.m. and easily made it inside for race-day registration at 7:00 a.m.  I loved the empty roads today with the holiday!  Rick went on a warm-up run while I walked around with our daughter.  It had been raining, and she loved looking at the puddles and overflowing ditches!  Then I headed inside to drop her off at the nursery.

I enjoyed the atmosphere of the start line so much.  When I'm not running or racing as much, I really miss seeing my friends and just feeling the energy around me as we all get ready to race.  I've been running anywhere from 3-7 miles a few times a week, but I also have days where I walk instead.  All together, I probably am running and walking 25-30 miles a week in my 6-7 daily morning workouts.  My latest "long" run was a 7 mile run at a 12:30 pace.  My last race was the Cotton Row 5K on Memorial Day, where I got a 26:12 and was 28.5 weeks pregnant.  My pace has slowed a lot since then on my normal runs, so I planned to try for a sub-30.

I felt great while running today, which is always a relief while pregnant.  I kept a fairly steady pace but slowed a little each mile (splits were 8:46, 8:56, and 9:07ish).  The recent rain had made it SO humid out there, so I was dripping with sweat.  That made me feel like I was running much harder than I was. Even though I have a huge tummy right now and I've put on 30 pounds, I still feel like I am the same in my lungs and legs.  I felt like I could run so much faster if I wasn't pregnant.  It just felt great being out there among other runners since so many of my miles recently have been solo miles.  I enjoy cheering for the other racers and watching the front of the pack (the course was out-and-back on a greenway), and I enjoy competing with the runners around me.  It felt good surging and picking off runners near the end of the race.  I also loved looking at the creek with its raging muddy waters today.  The scenery made the time go back quicker.

After finishing in 28:08, I headed inside to get our daughter, and we stayed for awards and to chat with fellow runners.  It was a great start to our Fourth of July!