Oh is for October

I would usually say that fall, and especially October, is one of my favorite times of the year: crisp weather, Halloween decorations and a certain winding down after the summer months.
So far, though, it has been a little bit more difficult this year. The weather goes from lovely to gross, I can't seem the find the Halloween decorations in the basement (or the time to put them out) and I feel about as wound down as a spinning top filled with espresso. In just a week's time we have weathered one hospital visit, three sicknesses, one broken down car and too many hours of stressful work days than I would like to track. Buuuuuut, such is this stage in life, and with our health back, a new battery in  the car (which was the best case scenario) and some sense of calm back at work, I have decided to start enjoying October to the fullest extent.

This weekend provided a great opportunity for that as we were down the Cape for some relaxation and so I could run the Harwich Cranberry Harvest Half Marathon. Considering I spent the previous weekend in the ER with pneumonia and am carrying this new baby around in my belly, I was just happy to be able to run and complete the Cape Trilogy of races that I started back in February. The course was gorgeous, the day was perfectly sunny and even though it was my longest time yet, I did it. 13 miles at 13 weeks is kind of the best story for the new baby book ever, right?

Baby's first bib!
I am hoping to do one more half marathon before the winter hits and my training depends more on the weather than what is on paper, so any suggestions for a late fall race are welcome! Part of my maternity running plan is to allow the weather to dictate my running more than in the past as I anticipate a loss of coordination/center of balance that would not work well on snowy sidewalks. This probably means some more time spend on the dreadmill, or perhaps the bike or pool, but whatever keeps this baby safe is what is most important, and as long as I am getting in some sort of exercise I will be happy.

A lot of people have asked me if I plan to continue running through my pregnancy and the answer is: absolutely. I will keep going until I feel the need to stop, which may not happen until I am at the end of my pregnancy or might have to happen sooner, but I am listening to my body and taking great care of myself (as I do pregnancy or not). I am strongly in the camp that a healthy body makes for a healthy baby, and I am also a role model to Madeleine and showing her how a woman can best take care of herself, whether pregnant or not. The fact that she thinks going to road races or Mama meeting her "fwends" in my run club are as commonplace in our lives as going to her weekly gymnastics class is pretty awesome :)

A lot is going to change with a newborn in our house (duh) and two little people to love and care for, which is going to make the need to take care of myself even more important.  I am lucky to have a husband who also puts my well-being high up on the priority list and helps me make that time for myself, but I know that is going to become even trickier once spring rolls around and this baby joins our family. I am anticipating a lot less time in my running shoes and a lot more time kissing kiddos, but I would not have it any other way. These are seasons of our lives that pass so quickly, and I am just lucky to be living them and trying hard to live in those moments.

I am hoping to make Boston 2016 my first post-pregnancy marathon goal, but am open to the fact that it may be Matty's turn to train (we learned that lesson the hard way!) or that breastfeeding and helping Maddie adjust to being a sibling might not allow for that training time, but for now, that is where my head is at. Might things change? Absolutely. This body of mine is in charge and anything that tells me I need to slow down or make changes will be heard loud and clear without any resistance from me because this is about more than me right now. Am I hoping to be that big belly out for a run in March? Heck yes! But who knows what these next few months will bring. At the end of the day the goal is just as it was with my last pregnancy: to bring a healthy and happy baby into the world via a healthy and happy Mama.

I wasn't anticipating this being so much about running, but I guess that is what's on my mind (and not just because my muscles are reminding me all about the running I did from the waist down today!). Happy October, all!

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