Today I did something I’ve never done before: I called my husband to come and pick me up from a run. I’m the kind of girl who toughs it out no matter what, no matter how much pain, no matter how “stupid” it might be to continue, I keep going. But when you’re pregnant things are a little different…no, a LOT different. Pregnancy, like my friend Michelle says, is no time to be a hero.
I headed out for a four miler this morning around 11am. It wasn’t too hot and there was a cloud cover and a nice breeze when I started. There’s a big hill to the start of this four miler but after that it’s relatively flat and really picturesque. I took it slow up the hill and stopped in a driveway about 3/4 of the way up to let my heart rate come down. And then I continued comfortably for the next three miles, taking a few walk breaks here when I felt like my belly needed a break.
At about the three mile mark I knelt down to re-tie my shoe. When I stood back up I felt lightheaded and empty. I paused, took a few deep breaths and a big swig of my water (I brought my Nathan Hydration pack with me.) I felt a little better and began to run, the lightheadedness was gone but the empty, light feeling in my stomach was still there. It felt like my blood sugar was really low. I ran a bit more. Then walked. The feeling was still there. I thought about the mile that I had left before home. Only a mile, the voice in my head said. But then a more reasonable voice broke through and said, You have nothing to prove. You don’t have to push yourself. The fact that you’re out here is a victory. You don’t want to pass out on the side of the road. Call your husband.
I listened to THAT voice and called my husband and asked him to come get me and bring some juice and a power bar. At this point I was probably 3/4 of a mile from home, and wondered if I would make it home before he had a chance to gather the food I requested and buckle our “I-do-it-myself” two year old daughter into the car. But in a few minutes he came around the corner and I hopped in the car, relieved to be sitting down and sucking down some ice cold orange juice.
At nearly 32 weeks I do feel like every run I go on is a little victory. The runs aren’t easy. They aren’t fast. And sometimes, as in the case today, they aren’t exactly what I hope for. But today was a good reminder that my runs should be fun and comfortable and that if they aren’t I need to listen to my body and act in its benefit. In pregnancy you should respect your limits, not push them.
Do you feel like you do a good job listening to your body? Where do you draw the line in pushing yourself?
Post Baby Comeback Part 3: The Marathon Plan is coming next week!