Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Primal Running (March 3, 2017)

March 3, 2017

Pregnancy race #1 is tomorrow, as I approach the 7-week milestone in this journey (6.5 weeks). Tomorrow is the West Van Run 5K. Or should I say it’s a “race” (stressing the "quotation marks") as I’m running but not exactly as competition to anyone, let’s be real! This is the one I mentioned the last post saying, “I wonder if anyone will notice [how slow I am]”. I have mentioned to a few who’ve inquired that I plan on running this race, and the assumption is that I will be trying to go fast, maybe to figure out what I’m capable of for the next 5K, the St. Patty’s. You know, because I was talking about how my track workouts were going and helping me get faster. Nope – things have changed since that conversation. I’m just going to run this at whatever pace feels comfortable and keeps my heart rate where it should be. I will keep a smile on my face and not mention finish time at all in anything I publish online.

At 7 weeks, the baby has doubled in size since last week, but is still quite small (blueberry-sized). Little paddles for arms and legs have formed, and the baby still has a little tadpole tail. It kind of looks a little weird. I continue to be tired, pretty much all the time, but I have been lucky that my nausea is manageable and I haven't been sick from it yet.

I’ve kind of been wondering if anyone has noticed my lack of running posts on social media these days. I wonder if people are wondering what happened to my weekly reports from the track. I’m not running there anymore… I better post *something* tomorrow, just so the questions go away. More importantly, I want to promote this event too! But I will be focusing on the fun of the event, not my performance. This might be odd to some when I say, “West Van Run was so fun!” and I don’t say anything else. They will ask, “so, how’d you do?”. Or they will be nosey and look me up in the results page and be puzzled. But I have to let the world know that I’m running; I will just make sure any selfies taken do not show my bloated mid-section.

I’m so very thankful that running is something a woman can safely do in their pregnancy (with a doctor’s approval). I mean, from an evolutionary standpoint, this makes sense! I should be able to continue to flee danger and hunt for food, even with child. Actually I should be able to do that especially *because* I’m with child. But it’s so wonderful in a practical sense because I don’t entirely have to get into a new routine. I simply adapt the one I already have and tone down the seriousness and intensity of it. It’s something that has brought me joy for years and will continue to do so at least for a little while (maybe a temporary hiatus when I get huge). It is the best stress release out there that I am aware of, or that works for me, which is wonderful for me to have in a time of rapid change and uncertainty. I always feel better after I have gone for a run, even if I didn’t feel particularly bad before.

The feeling of running has always been a primal feeling I have loved. It’s the main reason why I love running; I feel alive and connected to the living being that I am. I am not just an intellectual being with a career, emotions, and opinions, but I’m a living, breathing, strong animal and a force to be reckoned with. When I’m outside and running, I am aware of my heart beat, my breathing, my muscles, my surroundings, the ever-changing view, the smell of the grass and the trees, the sounds of the birds, the warmth of the sun, the taste of my sweat, and the feel of my feet contacting the ground. Running highlights this animal instinct in such a very real way. I find it empowering and I feel fierce. I feel strong, powerful, and like I can take on anything. Whilst I am much slower these days, I still feel empowered by my ability to move freely in this way. It empowers me that this physical task of growing a human is something I can do. It, just like running, was something this woman was born to do.

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