Wednesday, April 29, 2015

April is for Outdoors

April '15, so far. 

-Outside is where we spend most of our time in the spring, and I couldn't be happier that Hunter has my love of being out there. As much as I hate (HATE) that our green space across the street is not actually green space, but now being developed into several houses, it gives us (literally) loads of sand, gravel, and dirt to explore. Along with real, life-sized backhoes, bobcats, and bulldozers. It's pretty exciting stuff for a three-year-old boy.

-We have also been working hard on the yard and vegetable garden. Hunter gave a tour of plants to Nana and Grandaddy last weekend, and he remembers the names of every seedling out there. We so far have several tomato varieties, cucumbers, zucchini, arugula, lavender, parsley, basil, rosemary, lemongrass, beets, and one okra sprout, with a green bean bed needing some dirt. Our creek of a side yard now has rocks and ajuga holding its ground, with some hydrangeas starting to bloom near the honeysuckle. It has been a colorful spring so far, but we still have work to do and plans to carry out. A neighbor recently walked by and commented that we were always out working, which is kind of true, since we all love it.

Helping Jackson, who is so kind and patient with Hunter. 
Full speed ahead!

-I love April so much that I decided Jeremy and I should get married during it, which we did 5 years ago. We actually got a picture all together, with everyone smiling (I'm assuming on the part of the baby), for our anniversary. 

-Jeremy is now in taper mode for his upcoming Ironman, which is just over 2 weeks away. I'm super excited for his race, partly because I won't have to do it myself, and also because he has put in some really good training in lots and lots of rain and cold. He will surely benefit if it rains on race day. I want to point out that he laughed at me when I first moved into his place because of the number of bike water bottles I had. If not for my bottle hoarding habits, we couldn't keep a dozen dirty bottles on the counter at any given time and still have clean ones to drink out of. I'm sure he would appreciate if I'd get off the computer and actually wash them.

-His last long ride was with a famous (infamous?) professional cyclist. Strava can confirm.

-My own last long ride was actually 20 miles outside on my road bike! That makes 2 outside rides in less than a week. I go a speedy sub-16 mph pace now, all on pedestrian paths, and usually sitting as straight up as my little arms will allow. And yes, I'm very very careful and completely defensive while riding. A very old Los Locos jersey still fits over my belly, and I know I'm making the team proud by wearing it.

-I am 31 weeks pregnant now, and I want to say my pelvis pain is better, but I had such a plodding slow run this week that I don't think I can. Some weeks are just "tired" weeks when pregnant, and my next run may be wonderful, so I am not too upset about it. I recently got a "hey baby" catcall as a car came up from behind me, and I couldn't help but laugh as I thought of what they saw when they got around in front. The highlight of my last few runs was definitely when I passed a guy going up my last hill of the day. He even had a head start, and no, he was not a senior citizen (thanks for that question, sister). I just hope he saw the belly as I stuck it way out going by. And can I just say, the hills! The hills are getting steeper, and I realize how ridiculous they are when I run from my house and get at least 450 feet of climbing in 6 miles. 

-The shoulder pain from my tdap shot 3 weeks ago? It is still there, and still limiting my range of motion a LOT. Losing sleep over it because I can only sleep on my sides, neither of which are comfortable for it, has made me very angry at the poor nurse who could have kept me from having this disability. Yes it is a minor disability when you have a three-year-old.

-Three weeks ago I failed my one hour, non-fasting, post-run glucose test. I found out last week when the (same) nurse finally called me. The three hour, fasting, first-thing-in-the-morning test was not what bothered me about hearing this. What concerned me most besides the very small risks of my baby having hypoglycemia after birth and her increased risk of diabetes in the future was the larger risk that she could be a big baby. Doctors like to induce suspected large babies, and I am doing everything in my power to have a vbac, which most certainly does NOT include an induction. Before I even finished the 3-hr test my doctor told me that he had no concerns about me having a large baby (oh did I forget to tell him Jeremy was 9 1/2lbs and I was 8lbs2oz at birth?). I have zero risk factors for gestational diabetes, except that I am over 35 this time. I was still very nervous. It turns out that every draw for the 3-hr was normal (I do not have the sugar dia-beet-ezz, said in the voice of Wilford Brimley), and I am attributing my first failure to the run beforehand. The action of the glucagon from running I just cannot ignore. 

-This whole thing made me realize that I am certainly not getting enough protein. After estimating and tracking for a few days, I see that 50-60grams is pretty easy to hit, but getting to 100g is much harder, especially given my general dislike of meat. The Brewer pregnancy diet recommendations are now posted on my fridge, and I am sure in the next 9-ish weeks I can get this thing down. Just no liver for me. 

-9-ish weeks?! Single digits! I met my doula this week, and I do think she thinks I am a little over the top with my vbac determination. I said I'm doing everything I can!

-Coincidentally on Earth Day last week, I was super proud of Hunter for correcting me before I took a bag to the trash can. "Actually, Mommy, that's recycling." That's what I meant!

Monday, April 13, 2015

Third Trimester: Running, Cycling, and Waddling

I am now a waddler. It is not because I am just so largely pregnant, and it is only part time. The possibility of sympathy from strangers because of my "condition" has occurred to me, and then I just hope they'll give up their parking spaces so I can carry my giant three year old in the grocery store more easily. But by then it's too late of course. Maybe let me through the check out line ahead of you?

The cause of this waddle is actually running, so I feel almost like an imposter when it happens. Post run, for most of the rest of the day, depending on when I got it done, my pelvis is sore and painful, especially after sitting, like in a car. So into stores I waddle. 

The good news is that the pain is not compounding, so if I give it a day's rest-- no running consecutive days-- I'm good. And distance makes only a very small difference, so 6 miles 3 times a week works just perfectly for me. 

When "researching" helpful exercises and stretches for symphysis pubis dysfunction, I came upon a lot of advice. Most told me to rest as much as possible, use crutches, don't do housework, and keep my knees together at all cost. OH right! But I needed help with the RUNNING part of it. It occurred to me that my problem most likely isn't as severe as most. It seems very few people have lasting pain after delivery, so I am relatively confident I'm not doing permanent damage. Of course there is a small worry in the back of my mind that the right side, the one with hip dysplasia, does hurt a little more than the left. 

The first mile running is always the hardest. Maybe it is the momentum needed to get this body with its extra 10 pounds going. Or it could be the way the baby has to settle down low to enjoy the run. In my out and back 6 miler Saturday I ended with a mile on the same stretch of flat road that was 90 seconds faster than the first one. And it felt much easier. 

Sunday I took the road bike out to the park and river trail path again. While the handlebars seem to get lower and lower, I can still reach the brakes and I still fit into my shorts and a very few jerseys. It might be time to borrow some from the husband. Especially the Ironman ones for irony when those guys in baggy shorts and tennis shoes blow by me. 

I have been more consistent than ever these last several weeks in using the TRX. I needed some upper body muscle and strength. Then I acquired a shoulder injury from the placement of my Tdap vaccine at the doctor last week. This is the second time I've had it go right through my deltoid into my joint. So much for increased muscle mass! It feels really awesome, but at least gives me an excuse to not swim for a while.  

I haven't heard back from the office so I'm assuming all was good with my glucose test. I never would worry about these things if it weren't for reading forum or Facebook group posts (I had to stop following one I was added to) where so many women get diagnosed with gestational diabetes. On the flip side is the forum that praises women who barely show a bump at 35 weeks or have only gained 4 pounds by the end. Eek. I'm really thankful I've never worried too much about weight or body image. 

I just continue to do what I can and what makes me feel healthy. Last pregnancy I saw a post by pro triathlete about having "no zeros" in her training log during pregnancy. I strongly dislike that mentality and never force myself to exercise just to put something in a log, when I really need to rest. Pregnancy is so funny about how inconsistent it makes you feel, with one day being spectacular and the next full of fatigue. I have no goals or standards for my performance now or right after this baby is born, since strava is yet to create a Pregnant- or Postpartum-Queen of the Mountain. 

My new heavy duty running belt has been put away in favor of my older lighter one, since it's getting rather warm to have my whole torso covered in thick elastic. But I'm loving the spring weather and all the flowers, greenery, yard construction work, digging, planting, and rolling in the grass that comes with it. 

Easter egg hunt at Nana and Granddaddy's, with your traditional truck for holding eggs

Wednesday, April 1, 2015


Spring is official now. I don't *think* we will see any more snow or frost (pleasepleaseplease). Our garden hasn't been planted yet, except for some arugula, since the rest needs to wait until after Easter, but it has been expanded to triple last year's size. Jeremy and his mini helper worked hard on it, especially with the continuous leveling and digging of the soil with various "heavy" machines, also of the miniature variety.

The daffodils, tulips, and hyacinths are blooming in our yard, which got us excited to go visit the daffodil field up on Wye mountain last weekend.

He ran miles around the fields!

Their grapplers are searching for sticks.

Daddy got kisses.

I got licks.

We were over here taking selfies when...



Three more months to go before baby girl comes! Hunter asks daily when she's coming out. He is excited and loves babies. One of my pregnancy pet peeves is when people talk about being pregnant for 10 months. Since when is 40 weeks equal to 10 months? Are they using lunar calendars? And you're still not pregnant for the first 2 whole weeks. I get the discomfort and excitement about the pending date and how long those last few days must seem. But unless you're an elephant, it is just not 10 months. However I do feel like an elephant some days while running.

I went to the chiropractor and he worked some on my round ligaments in addition to the usual manipulation of my SI joints. It seemed to help, at least for one of my runs last week, when I got in 6 hilly miles at 9:15 pace. In case anyone is new to the potential fluctuations in pace while pregnant, you should know the previous run, a flat 7 miler, was around 10:15+ per mile. That's when I really felt like an elephant. I realized running at that speed is conducive to multitasking though, and maybe I can get through some emails. 

I am feeling baby stabs and leg parts (ahem)...

(I realize Ingl├ęs may not have been our packers' first language.) 
...up close to my ribs now, which is exciting, since it means she is not breech at this point. This, to me, is even more important than running right now. Nobody these days, around here, will do a VBAC with a breech, and I am set on a VBAC. I am doing everything I can at this point to be the perfect candidate. 

In other spring/exercise/pregnant news, I rode my actual road bike on an actual road outside last weekend. It was my first time in a few months, and it was beautiful, head-windy, and super trafficky when I ran into some friends who suggested I ride around the river trail loop in an open farmland area with few pedestrians and their attached small animals. It was perfect! I felt safe, totally balanced, and super slow. I loved every minute. I could see replacing another run each week with this, while I can still lean over far enough to reach the brakes. 

My mantra: just keep going and going