What I Wish I Knew Running My First Marathon

January 10, 2014

This weekend is the 6th anniversary of my very first marathon! Back in 2008, I lined up with thousands of other runners and tackled the Disney Marathon course. It was both amazing and awful, all at the same time. I swore off marathons around mile 21, and then couldn’t stop thinking about which one I wanted to sign up for next as soon as I finished. Here are a few things I wish I would have known going into my very first marathon.

Your Time Doesn’t Matter

Finishing your very first marathon is an accomplishment in itself. Setting a time goal and hoping you will reach it, without really knowing what to expect, isn’t the best idea. There are so many unknowns in this long of a race, and putting the pressure on yourself to achieve such a specific time just isn’t a good idea. Go after the goal you set to finish the race, and experience everything that comes along with it throughout the race.

Disney Finish

Long Runs DO Matter

Boy oh boy – this seems like a dumb one, especially coming from me. I put such a big emphasis on long runs to each and every client I coach. What my clients don’t know is that I harp on the long run solely from experience of disrespecting it for my first marathon. I followed Hal Higdon’s plan for Disney 2008, and ended up doing my longest (and last) long run the weekend before Thanksgiving. I need to mention, the plan does not recommend this – I just skipped all of the long runs following that. Needless to say, that is crazy far out from the race, and nowhere near a long enough distance to run before a marathon.

On Course Support is Huge

I had no idea how mental the marathon would be. One of the parts I look forward to most when I run a race is knowing when I will see the people who came to support me. Even if it’s just here and there, I am always uplifted when I see Marcus telling me I look strong or my sister holding up an inspiring sign. Getting family and friends to see you a few times on course is so important!

Chicago Marathon 1

You Are Going to Get Tired Towards the End

Yea, your legs feels so great in the first half of the race. That doesn’t mean you should pick it up early. I remember passing the halfway point and thinking, “Wow! This is way easier than most people say it is!”. Wow – I wrong. The last 6 or so miles hurt so bad. I didn’t want to run another step. I’m sure it also didn’t help that I was severely undertrained. Too many things added up to a very rough race!

It Is Worth Every Step

Regardless of how tough the race is when you are running it, once you cross the finish line, it all becomes worth it. The high you get from the accomplishment is unlike any other, and lasts for days post race. Reflect on the training you completed and the race you just finished – it truly is amazing!

What do you wish you knew going into your first marathon or road race?

 

Baby Baum: 33 Weeks

January 8, 2014

Nothing like a week off from blogging, huh? Not quite sure how that happened, but that means we are up to another week of updates! It was a busy week and weekend for sure. Can you tell in the photo? Hello tired eyes…

Baby Baum 33 WeeksI wasn’t going to use the photo at first since I look nothing short of rough, but hey, we all have good and bad weeks, right? This just so happens to be a much more exhausting week for me.

What’s up with the baby:

  • He or she is the size of a pineapple. Based on our doctor’s appointment last Friday, the baby is measuring in at 4lbs 10oz.
  • The skeleton is starting to harden and the baby is looking less alien like.
  • The bones in his or her skull aren’t fused together, which allows them to move and slightly overlap, thus making it easier for him to fit through the birth canal. These bones don’t entirely fuse until early adulthood, so they can grow as his brain and other tissue expands during infancy and childhood.

What’s up with me:

Weight gained: 21 lbs as of my weigh in last Friday. I’ve gained 2 lbs in the past two months, which the doctor said is fine. I have noticed being a bit hungrier lately at night, and have been eating an extra snack. I have a feeling the next month might shoot the scale up a bit, which is fine with me. Anything for a healthy baby!

Workouts: Last week was great in the workout front. I ran 3 times, and did 3 strength training workouts! Woo hoo! My runs are all 2.5 miles now – no longer. I don’t even try to stretch them out. I have a comfortable 2.5 mile loop I really like, and mix running and a little walking together. Its been working super well lately.

Symptoms

  • Low back ache at the end of a long day.
  • A super full feeling stomach, almost all the time. My meals are becoming smaller and a bit more frequent.
  • Shortness of breath. I can always feel the baby pushing against my ribs and lungs. Deep, slow breaths are getting harder and harder to come by.

Movement: Super often! Its much more like the baby is making slow movements instead of the kicks and jabs like before. I think someone is starting to be a bit more crammed in there.

Food Aversions/Cravings: Food hasn’t really looked all that good to me lately. I really just eat because I know I need to. I am thinking that has to do with my stomach feeling so full. I’m still doing my best to eat lots of veggies and limit the sugar. I did have my first milkshake of the entire pregnancy last week though. It was worth every sip!

Sleep: Like a champ!

Stretch marks: Nada

Fun Things from the week: Our 32 week appointment went great. The baby is measuring a week ahead in growth and gave us an amazing sonogram! We got to see a beautiful profile shot, and saw him or her swallow and move the lips. I can not wait to see this baby in my arms in a few weeks!!

We also attended birth classes at the hospital we are delivering at. They were very informative, and included a tour of the hospital. It was really great to see the actual Labor and Delivery rooms, as well as the post-partum suites. I feel much more at ease after seeing where we will be welcoming Baby Baum into the world! I plan to talk more about the birth research I’ve done and what we are choosing, but this will be after Baby Baum is here.

Belly Button In or Out? Out out out.

Wedding Rings on or off? On :)

Happy or Moody most of the time? Very happy. I really haven’t had many moody moments in the pregnancy

New Baby Items: No new items this week, although that will definitely be changing soon since our baby shower is next weekend! I did get a Gabrialla support band to help with some of my back pain. Review coming soon!

Looking forward to: The baby shower!!! I am getting so so so excited!

Did anyone else attend birth classes before diving into the real deal? What did you think of them?

Baby Baum: 32 Weeks

January 2, 2014

First off, a big congrats to my alma mater UCF for winning their first ever BCS Bowl Game last night! The Knights defeated the Baylor Bears in the Fiesta Bowl – aka, one of the best games I have ever seen UCF play. It was so much fun to see them do so incredibly well!!

UCF Fiesta Bowl

Alrighty, on to Baby Baum!

Welp, I can finally say I am having a baby this year! For months, I’ve been telling myself that after the holidays, focusing on the baby would be the top priority. Now that Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Years have all come and gone, it looks like its baby time! Still not quite sure that happened already, but bring it on! On to the 32 week update!

Baby Baum 32 weeks

Baby Details:

  • The baby is now the size of a squash, measuring around 4lbs and 16.7 inches long
  • He or she has been facing down for the past couple of ultrasounds
  • The baby will be gaining about half a pound a week from now until birth. He or she will gain a third to half of his birth weight during the next 7 weeks as he fattens up for survival outside the womb.
  • He or she now has  toenails, fingernails, and real hair – or at least peach fuzz.

My details:

Weight gained: My 32 week appointment is coming up on Friday, so I’ll find out more then. I’m sure I’ve gained a couple of pounds the past week with Christmas and all of the yummy, indulgent food that came along with it. Well worth it!

Workouts: I’ve been walking like crazy, and running just a little bit. I am getting the Gabrialla support band in the mail tomorrow, so I am hoping that will alleviate some of the back pain I’ve been having and help me to keep running a little bit longer.

Symptoms:

  • Braxton Hicks here and there, but nothing too crazy.
  • My low back is getting sore most nights now – more so on the nights where I am very active and on my feet a lot during the day.
  • Peeing all the time during the day.

Movement: All the time! I constantly feel little movement and kick on my right side, right under (or in!) my ribs. It is really only uncomfortable if I am sitting up straight, and his or her little feetsies are really jabbing into me.

Food Aversions/Cravings: Nada. All food is good food. I am at the point where I just can’t eat a lot though, due to lack of space in my belly. Real Estate is getting quite sparse!

Sleep: Still great on the sleep front. I wake up every once in a while to go to the bathroom, but otherwise, nothing crazy. As long as I don’t drink about an hour before I go to sleep, I can usually last throughout the entire night.

Stretch marks: None!

Fun Things from the week: Crossing over into 2014! Since Baby Baum is actually going to be born in 2014, being in the year feels like a huge step! We also went to a “Navigating Labor” Class last weekend, which was amazing. It was taught my a doula, and she was fantastic. She was honest and really told us what was going to happen. No sugar coating, unicorns, or glitter – just the truth, which I hugely appreciate!

Belly Button In or Out? Out – Way out!

Baby Baum 32 weeks

Wedding Rings on or off? On :)

Happy or Moody most of the time? Happy, Happy, Happy!

New Baby Items: We received an adorable safari play gym from a friend a couple of days ago. I can’t wait to see the baby look at all the animals and be entertained by the sounds!

Looking forward to: Our 32 week appointment is tomorrow morning (even though we will be pretty much at 33 weeks) and then my baby shower is in 17 days! I can not wait to have family and friends come together to celebrate this little baby’s arrival! We also have a birth class this weekend at the hospital, so I am looking forward to seeing where we will be welcoming Baby Baum into the world!

Happy 2014 everyone! This year is going to be amazing!

A Year In Review: 2013

December 30, 2013

January

Witnessed some best friends say I Do

Meghann's Wedding

Won a fun scavenger hunt from Brooks Running

Brooks Run Happy

Volunteered at the Disney Marathon

Disney Marathon Volunteering

Explained some very common running workouts

UT Track

 February

Shared my Kentucky Derby Marathon Training Plan

2013 Kentucky Derby Marathon Plan.jpg

I PR’d in the half marathon

Gasparilla

 Attended an amazing Nutrition for Athletes Workshop

ISSN

 March

Enjoyed a Friends-cation in Blue Ridge, Georgia

Blue Ridge

I PR’d (again!) in the half marathon

Florida Halfathon

April

Was affected (like each one of you) by the terror in Boston

explosion-boston

I ran my second fastest marathon in Kentucky

Kentucky Derby Marathon

I made an amazing career change

NASM Version 4 book

May

I officially launched my business, Fitness Fruition.

Green Black Box Fitness Fruition

Shared a few ways to help you get that pull up

Tricep Dips

June

Created a super yummy recipe

Crockpot Pickle Chicken

Shared some amazing running gear

Nathan Waterbottle 009

July

Went on an amazing vacation to Lake Tahoe and San Francisco

Lake Tahoe

August

Let everyone in on some super fun news (and the reason my running was cut down dramatically)

Winnie's Announcement V3

Shared our pregnancy details

Baby Baum 14 Weeks.png

September

Became a certified RRCA Running Coach

RRCA

Chatted about all different kinds of runners

Running Ecard 3

October

Ran a fun themed 5k

Florida Halloween 5k

Finally started to see more of a baby bump

21 weeks baby baum

November

Spectated an IRONMAN triathlon

Ironman FL

Shared how I stay active during pregnancy

Wall Sit

Had some beautiful maternity pictures taken

Maternity Photos

December

Shared my holiday gift guide

holiday gift guide 2

Finished up the 7th month of pregnancy (and was surprised with an amazing running stroller!)

Bob Stroller Baby Baum

What are some highlights from your 2013? I hope you all have an amazing New Year’s Eve – see you next year!

Baby Baum: Week 31

December 24, 2013

Happy Christmas Eve everyone! I have a little bit of work I have to do today and then I am headed to Christmas Eve mass with the family! Woo hoo for a little bit of time off. Just because I think its adorable, here is a little festive photo for you. Winnie took note of Santa visiting early, and just can’t seem to take her eye off of it.

Winnie Christmas Stocking

I figured since we are getting down to the wire now, I would update everyone on Baby Baum each week, instead of every two. There seems to be so much more going on with the baby getting bigger and bigger, and this is a great way for me to document it. Without further delay, here is the bump-date!

Baby Baum Week 31

Definitely getting rounder and rounder 😉

Here is what is going on with Baby Baum this week:

  • Baby Baum is now measuring the size of a pineapple – measuring 15-16.7 inches long and 2.5 to 3.8lbs
  • All 5 sense are now in working order and he or she is going through major brain and nerve development
  • The baby’s irises now react to light
  • Needed fat is accumulating under the baby’s skin, causing its body to start to plump up a bit.

And of course, details for me:

Weight gained: I hopped on the scale a couple of days ago and measured 19 lbs. I wouldn’t doubt if that has gone up a bit – Hello Christmas Cookies!!

Workouts: I am still getting in 2.5 mile runs, every other day. The baby moved off of my bladder a bit, so running is significantly more comfortable at the moment. That can change by the minute at this point, so we shall see. On days I don’t run, I end up just walking the same distance as I usually run. At least I am still getting in the steps :) I was bad about weight training last week, and only got the to gym once. I guess it’s better than nothing!

Symptoms:

  • Low back pain at the end of every day. Yesterday was rough, as I was on my feet for 6 hours straight.
  • Lots of bathroom trips
  • Afternoon fatigue
  • Feeling full after eating only a little bit
  • A little bit of hip/groin pain today. I think my hips are trying to widen even more!

Movement: Lots and lots! Always at night, and whenever I lay down to sleep, including naps. Otherwise, it is pretty sporadic.

Food Aversions/Cravings: Nothing looks bad, which I am very happy about. I have been eating more cookies than I usually would, which is something I should probably hold off on. I mean, if I’m not drinking my calories at holiday functions, I might as well enjoy a few extra cookies, right?!

Sleep: I slept all the way through the night last night! It was glorious! I also went to bed at 9pm, so I think I was just that tired! Otherwise, I am still sleeping well, just getting up a little more often for bathroom breaks, usually 1-2 times per night.

Stretch Marks: Nope! My belly button is getting awfully pokey though 😉

Miss Anything: I could really go for some solid stomach sleeping right about now. I am really looking forward to that in 9(ish) weeks!

Fun Things From The Week: Yes!!! Marcus and I were surprised! We had a holiday party with a group of friends, and they ended up turning it in to a little surprise shower for us. The all chipped in and bought us a new BOB running stroller! It was absolutely amazing and so generous of all of them to take care of us so well. I am very blessed to have such a thoughtful, great group of friends. Don’t mind my lack of shoes – I had to take off my heels!

Bob Stroller

I also did a little more decorating in the nursery. I plan to do a post all about the decor we have as soon as everything is finished. My mom is making the baby quilt, so I want to make sure that is done before showing the finished product to everyone – probably in about a month!

Our 4D Ultrasound ended up getting canceled last week, and couldn’t be rescheduled for another 2 weeks. I opted to just cancel it all the way and wait to see the baby in February. I was a little bummed at first, but now I am a-ok with it.

New Baby Items: That beautiful BOB stroller! I have such an urge to just go push it around – that wouldn’t be weird, right?! 😉

Looking forward to: Hitting the 8 month mark on Sunday! I can not believe we are looking at the last 6-10 weeks of pregnancy! So so crazy!

Have a very Merry Christmas! See you all later this week!