Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Respect Yourself and Those You Love

On my 10th wedding anniversary, I wanted to deviate slightly from my super-running-related posts and post about a recent conversation with my husband, Steve.  A couple nights ago I shared with him a Facebook status a friend had posted about how her husband works during the day and then comes home and does nothing in the evening to help her around the house or with their three children, and he demeans what she does all day.  Several other mutual friends, moms, had chimed in that they are in the exact same circumstances.

I can't help that I'm always shocked about these stories, although I know how much of the norm it really is out there in this world still.  We've made such strides in feminism, but there are men out there who don't respect their women.  And it's not helped by the fact that these women do not respect themselves enough to stop it.  I'm happy to hear this friend stating she is putting her foot down - she's realizing her value and her worth, and she's willing to fight for it.

Steve has always been a completely equal partner in our marriage and an equal partner in our parenting.  Sometimes he's carried a little extra weight and sometimes I have.  10 years ago, when I was at my sickest and on disability leave from work and at my most bedridden, he pulled so much of the weight of the house, while being worried for me and our future, and he made it look so easy.  Each time one of his new award-winning, best-selling video games is getting ready to come out, all the other company wives and I become widows for a couple months.  The "crunch" as we all call it has a lot of 18-20 hour days, 7 days a week, this whole couple month period.  Those are the times I pulled a little extra weight.

He respects that a stay-at-home mom's days are long, without many breaks, and tiring.  He recognizes and embraces the limited time he gets each day with his daughter in the mornings and evenings.  He's taken care of me through this first trimester of the pregnancy. 

But my current reflection is how happy I am that our daughter Marissa, and our upcoming second kid, will get to grow up seeing what an equal household looks like.  Our children will model their relationships after that.  He gives me the credit for showing Marissa what a strong, independent woman is like who respects and knows herself.  I give him the credit for showing her what it's like to respect the ones you love and not give more value to one type of "job" a parent holds, over another.

And to tie it back to running too, he gets major props for always being so supportive of this obsessive, all-encompassing hobby of mine. :-) He's not a runner, he doesn't exercise or do sports (although I should note we even out because he does a much better job of eating healthy than I do).  He recognizes how much healthier running has made me over the years, he recognizes that it helps me maintain a solid adult identity outside of being a mother, and he supports me unconditionally in all my running-related efforts.

My husband and I have been together more than half my life, and I look forward to so many more years together!
Awful pic of me, so tired after a big PR at Houston Half Marathon, Steve was there to celebrate with me!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

And My Energy Returns! With a New-found Love for the Elliptical Machine!

I've been saddled with some awful first trimester fatigue for the last couple months, but as I hit 12 weeks now, I find in the last couple days, my energy seems to be returning!  I stepped onto our elliptical here at home for the first time in a long time on Friday and made it through 20 minutes (2.05 miles).

And then yesterday I was able to get two visits to the elliptical in, 20 minutes (2.40 miles) and 10 minutes (1.25 miles).  This morning, another 10 minutes (1.10 miles)!

Why the elliptical?
  1. It's convenient. My energy is returning, but I wouldn't call it a surge. I can still get worn out easily.  This means the home gym item is a major plus at this moment. 
  2. It's indoors! But why not back to running outside? Well, besides the fatigue, I've suffered horribly the last 9 weeks with allergy-like symptoms like none that I've ever had any previous year.  Congestion, sinus pressure, wheezing, and coughing.  And that's with the daily Zyrtec.  And when you are pregnant, you can't take much for it because of the concern for spiking your blood pressure.
  3. It's still cardio. Right now, my goal is to not completely lose my base fitness level. This is also my biggest fear. I worried all of the first trimester that I wouldn't get to run in my second trimester because I had completely lost my base. And they say during pregnancy - you can maintain a base, but you can't build a base.

I saw the chiropractor this morning for a "tune-up" as I call it, and he wasn't overly thrilled with my new elliptical love.  He thinks it's not great for my knees, causing some rotation of the kneecap, putting more pressure and therefore pain on the outside of each foot, and forcing the hip to kick out with each rotation.  So now the mission is to control my allergies to get me back to outdoor running and less elliptical dependence.  I'm going to investigate a few things he suggested, like ionizers in the house and bee honey / pollen orally.  Of course, even if we get past this congestion/wheezing problem, I'll then have to reacclimate to the outside temperatures for running.  In the meantime, more regular chiropractor appointments as I continue to use the elliptical.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

First Run in Weeks was Eventful

I'm behind on blogging, just as I feel I'm behind on many things right now.  Sunday was a joyous celebration of 1700 mostly women entrants getting active in a fun, unintimidating atmosphere at the Heels and Hills Half Marathon, 10K, 5K, and 1 Mile Fun Run. Need to blog on that later... I was feeling awful going into this race with 1st trimester pregnancy fatigue and bad allergies, but the event was enough pressure to make me say "Deal with it!" and push all that down below the surface to get the race pulled off.  Sunday night it all welled up to the surface and I've spent a LOT of time in bed since.  Yesterday, I figured out that after 5 weeks of atrocious allergies, the fact I was feeling so much worse appears to be a superbad head cold - LOVELY.  That feels like it's trying to resolve itself so hopefully I'll feel better soon.

Meanwhile, I haven't run in a couple weeks. I want to keep my base going strong during the pregnancy so I can keep running for a while.  But this fatigue really is a kick in the pants.  People know my Type A nature so if I say it's put me on the sidelines, you know it's bad.  Right now, try as I might, if I have a choice between sleep or run, SLEEP WINS.

This morning I finally dragged my butt out the door.  0.1 mile warmup walk, then 2 x 400m at 9:30 pace (very fast for me).  Then a walk to bring me to 0.85 miles.  The sun was beating down and I know it's only about to get so much hotter, but at 79 degrees with 65% humidity, I feel like I'm melting. 

As I was approaching my house from one street over, a police car hurriedly pulled up to the house I was passing and rushed to the door.  I wonder what that was all about!

I had headed out for this jog/walk right as the lawn mowing company arrived at the house.  After seeing the police car, I was still musing on what was going on at my neighbor's house as I approached my own home.  Thank you to the lawn guys who left a "mowed-up" 2 foot long SNAKE in my front yard.  Nice guys.

So a short but eventful run to try to get back on this running train.  Of course, now I feel like I need another nap. Sigh. Can't wait to hit 12 weeks when most of this fatigue, dizziness, and lightheadedness should pass.