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Thursday, July 25, 2013


This past Sunday, I proudly stood on the start line of my sixth marathon.    It wasn't pretty; I had bags under my eyes, pimples on my face, and I'd gained five pounds recently, which meant my normal spandex had been traded in for a baggier pair of "fat" running shorts if you will.  I knew it was just due to the previous 13 weeks of training, which this time around, left me more fatigued and ravenously hungry than ever before.  In addition, my headaches had recently heightened, most likely from the summer heat and dehydration, and the only way to fully cure them was by actually eating more.  I also began putting a lot of pressure on myself; the more "lack of control" I felt over my body, the higher my expectations grew to overcome it, which often brought me to tears.  Plus, for the first time ever, rather than looking forward to the adrenaline rush of the final miles and .2, I began fearing them in recent weeks, the pain of the pushing actually making me queasy...

So, needless to say, I stood on that start line very proud, having persevered through this trying training cycle.  Looking around at my loved ones there supporting me, I felt a sense of comfort and relief.  In addition, I accepted the fact that this would be my slowest marathon to date.  This one would be all about the journey, each mile having new meaning.  It would be so slow in fact, that I won't reach mile 1 until this Sunday, when I will be 14 weeks pregnant with 25 miles, err, 25 weeks, left to go...


If I keep going at this pace, my projected finish time is January 26.

As you can imagine, Mike and I are very excited.   And scared sh*tless.  But hey, marathons are unpredictable and not supposed to be easy, so bring it on.

So, here are our biggest baby concerns as of late:
*  What do we buy him/her first:  running shoes or a bike? 
Answer:  running shoes
*  What do we buy ourselves first:  a jogging stroller or a baby bike trailer?
Answer:  a jogging stroller

No worries, Mike is totally on board with these answers.  Or at least he will be when I tell him.

Here are the things I like about pregnancy so far:
* I am hungry 24/7 and might eat your face off if you get too close to me.
* I have boobs.

And here are the things I dislike about pregnancy so far:
* I am hungry 24/7 and might eat your face off if you get too close to me.
* I have boobs.

Here are some things we already know about him/her:
*  He/she will be short with a big nose.
* He/she loves cheeseburgers.

I am looking forward to all the unknowns and new experiences.  Will we have a son or a daughter?  What new tricks will my body play on me tomorrow (the highlight today was when my brain stopped functioning; I couldn't decipher the door from the window at the bank.  Yeah, don't ask.)?  I am also enjoying the new perspective on life this is giving me.  What matters most right now is what is inside my tummy, and I will do whatever it takes to protect that.

So, let's talk about running.  Ready, set, go get me a steak to comfort me because that sh*t is hard right now!  With so many unwanted suggestions from others to stop running for fear I was doing harm, they got into my head (damn it), and I took a very safe approach over the last 13 weeks.  On average, I ran about 4-6 miles every other day, with walk breaks whenever it felt too warm or my body climbed too high on what I now call the "preggo wall".  I can't explain it, but I immediately started running about a minute to a minute and a half slower per mile, not on purpose, even if I could still chew gum, talk, do some cartwheels, and run at the same time.  My doctor is actually encouraging me to run more, albeit with less intensity, so my plan is to gradually pick up more miles in this second trimester, when the baby has passed all of his/her crucial developmental stages, and the "preggo wall" apparently starts breaking down.

 Post baby running goals?  Well, when I tell people I am signing up for Boston, which is less than three months after my due date, they think I am crazy, so I might need to rethink that.  I am also hoping the whole "women get faster after having babies" thing is actually true, so I am gonna bank on that, like, hard core. 

In the meantime, I plan to share my experiences as I reach each mile of this marathon on my blog.  In the end, it might not be my fastest marathon, but I have a good feeling that it just might be my favorite one to date...


  1. Go Jen and grandspud. Do whatever is right for you and all will be ok. Love to you, Michael, and spud. Happy running, happiness always. Mom

  2. I am so proud of you and elated for you and Mike! Also selfishly I have to admit so happy for dad and I!!!!Another chapter in all our lives and a very happy one!!!! Do what is right for you and I know all will be well! What a lucky baby to have you and Mike!!!! Love to the three of you always! Love you!!!! mom

  3. Jenn,
    (My dear "additional daughter." Soo happy to hear the wonderful news and look forward to updates. You know me.....hoping for a girl for you and Mike. But, girl or will soon join the ranks of motherhood. All those "silly" things your mother told you over the years, you will suddenly, GET! I things are STILL doing that with me! You are a strong lady. Exercise is GOOD as you know. Just do what you feel is not too much, as well as what your doc recommends. God bless! We look forward to this baby!! Much love, Momma Brown XO

  4. Jen and Michael,

    Congratulations and all our love on your next new adventure, and don't worry about the preggo wall --you are doing great

    Aunt Rachel and the whole 409 Shoemaker gang