It has been just over a year since I became a first time mama. I have set a lot of goals over the last year. Anything from getting my baby to sleep through the night to just keeping him alive every day. As I watched the 2017 OneAmerica 500 Festival Mini Marathon finishers come across the finish line last year, just a few weeks postpartum, I couldn’t help but want that for myself for the future.
I have never been a huge runner, as I have always ran for exercise and the occasional stress reliever. I have so many friends, family members, and coworkers who are such inspirations when it comes to running. They have always encouraged me over the years, but I never had enough guts to sign up. So my son’s 1st year was starting to fly by, when my good ol’ hubby signed me up for the Miler Series (5k, 10k, and 10 mile races) and the Mini-Marathon. “Yikes. Now I am committed” is all I could think when he handed me the gift.
And…do I even have time for this?
How do I train for 13 miles when I barely have time to eat dinner at night, let alone block off 30-60 minutes of training time throughout the work week? And don’t get me started on the hour plus runs that I will have to do on the weekends. When will I sleep? As a full time working mama, I pick up my son at 4:00 every day. The last thing I want to do is have mom-guilt and drop him right back off at the gym daycare. And yes, I know, I could run outside. But HELLO, it is just now starting to look and feel like spring around here. I don’t have the heart to put him a stroller to run around downtown and spend even less time with him. I feel selfish.
Because of the “mom guilt” and the fact that I want to snuggle the face off of my cute little guy when we get home, I don’t get to the gym until 7:15 at the earliest. This doesn’t happen every night, but I try to go at least 2 times during the week, sometimes kicking and screaming. I run a few miles to keep loose during the week. When I get home from the gym, I throw together a quick dinner (good thing my husband isn’t picky). Hoping while dinner is cooking I can get lunches packed, clean up a little, and potentially grade some papers. When the weekend comes, I try to get in a longer run (which is anything over 6 miles).
I started “seriously” training in January, prepping for my 5k race in February, the first of the Miler Series races. I wasn’t too nervous for this one, given I go to the gym and run 3 miles each time I go. I didn’t get a lot of outside training days in, but the race went smoothly. I even beat my goal time. A month went by and it was time for the 6-mile race. I was a little more nervous about this race, as I had never ran over 5 miles during my training. I knew at the end of it all, my cheer squad (husband and son) would meet me at the finish line as I gasp for air.
At this point, training is becoming daunting, partially because I thought I would be training in the beautiful spring weather. Indiana weather played a huge joke on me when it decided to stay winter for an additional two months. My motivation became low, and the thought of running 10 miles made me so tired I just wanted to lay on the couch. I was able to take advantage of a few “nice” days and run up to 7 or so miles. The 10-mile training race came, which decided to be the coldest of all the races. I ran it with time I was proud of, but after this race I started to have some knee pain. Apparently running in your 30’s isn’t the same as when you run when you are in your 20’s. Who would have thought?
Now the time has come to run the big 13.1 miles in just a few short days. I’ll be honest, I’m nervous. I don’t want anyone to watch me. Good thing it is only a few thousand people watching and cheering me on. Jokes aside, Indy knows how to do the mini (and the entire month of May) right. All of our Hoosier pride comes out during this month, and it makes me proud to run the race as a Hoosier, wife, and a new mama.
Obviously, I’m not trying to win the race, but I am trying to be a role model for my son that hard work pays off. I am also doing this for myself, because moms…we deserve to put ourselves first every once in a while.
Tips I am giving myself:
- Remember childbirth? Suck it up.
- Just one more mile
- The pain is only temporary (hopefully)
- It’s okay to pee your pants. Only the great runners do it, right?
- Free food and beverages at the end
- You’ll feel great when it is finished
- Very low statistic of being last
Hope to see many mommies out there cheering each other on! Let’s do this, ladies!