Photo from Mount Royal, Frisco, Colorado.

"That is happiness; to be disolved into something complete and great. When it comes to one, it comes as naturally as sleep." - Willa Cather

Friday 31 December 2010

First official pregnant marathon (now with pictures)

Maybe it seems weird that I write so much about running in pregnancy and yet have actually never run a marathon pregnant. But in my first pregnancy, I just didn't feel it was necessary. I ran so much on a daily basis simply because I loved it and believed it was healthy. But now racing has become such an important part of our social life that it was time.

Okay, I did run a 50 miler 6 weeks pregnant, but then miscarried two days later only to realize I had actually not had a living baby in me for 3 weeks - so did that really count? Then I ran a marathon when I was 3 weeks pregnant this time - but does that count? Anyway, it doesn't really matter.

What matters is I have this overwhelming feeling of happiness now. I am sure there are many of you reading this who feel the same when you return from running a long race.

I woke up to a text message from Henriette that it was "mirror slippery" out and that she wouldn't run the marathon, but would run the half marathon instead. (just as an aside: "mirror slippery" is a Danish expression for really slippery - I'm trying to think of an American expression. I really like "slippery as an eel", so we'll just say that. Anyhow, I have run on many surfaces, though never a mirror. I imagine running on a mirror wouldn't actually be that slippery.) I was now both bummed about Henriette and worried about the run. But I looked out at the thermometer and it was already over freezing, so I figured we were good to go.

A couple of miles after the start and the sidewalks are okay.

Today's "race" was another social marathon, cleverly called "Socialmarathon", where one simply runs in a group with a specific time goal. SR and I ran with the 4:30 group. Up until a few days ago, I was worried I could make it through, but I felt good today. Plus I have gotten so much inspiration (and entertainment) from Chris McDougall's book, Born to Run; all that talk about ultras and one feels like a wimp complaining about a marathon.

The big attraction with this run, as I have mentioned before, is you get to run twice through the airport in Copenhagen. Well, if this seemed too good to be true, it's because it was. At least this year. There was too much of a fear of terrorism. Runners being well-known terrorists and all. But we did get to run on the side walk IN FRONT of the airport...

Other than that, it was 13 miles one way and then turn around and run it again, mostly on roads on the island of Amager, though a little on trails through sand. That part on sand turned out to be the only slippery part since the sand was covered in snow, which had melted and then frozen.

Here is a guy facing another kind of challenge. Thanks Lars Bergelius for the pic.

But, as in my first social marathon, it was simply great fun. I got so wrapped up in conversation with the author of the new book "Elsk at løbe", Tor Rønnow, that it wasn't until SR ran back and said something that I realized we were WAY behind the rest of the group. This was at about mile 17. Oh, crap.

Alone with SR at the social marathon, now trying to catch up. And THIS is Denmark in the winter...

This is the only time a social marathon gets hard: when you get far behind and you suddenly have to run really fast to catch up - or risk never finding the group again. Luckily, SR had memorized the route on the way out, so I just followed his instructions and we eventually caught up again.

We made it in with the 4:30 group, a bit late, at 4:37. And I only peed four times :).

It almost makes me worried to say it - but it wasn't hard! And I didn't feel sick at all. But this has been the case all along: I feel sick almost all the time, except for when I run.

I have to give this run my highest recommendation. Everyone was in good humor and the aid stations were awesome: plenty of brownies, cake, candy bars, coke and hot chocolate (has Denmark leaned/learnt a thing or two from the US??).

Thanks again, Lars, for the photo.

What an awesome way to finish the year. But the chance I will still be awake at midnight tonight is 0.1%.

Edit: I DIDN'T make it to midnight! But we had a great party, nonetheless. Happy New Year og Godt Nytår!


Helen said...

Congrats girl! Glad to hear you are feeling good.

Happy New Year to you and SR!!

Coach Jen said...

Nice job! Glad you're feeling good. I love the concept of a social marathon. I've never heard of one around here.

Happy New Year! Pretty much no chance I'll be awake at midnight either.

Kirsten said...

I'm really happy for you, great that you enjoy the running so much while pregnant. Well, if that's the way to keep "unsick" - go for it girl!
Hilarious with the airport security, maybe they should concentrate a little bit more on the right targets instead of the innocent runners. You are so lucky to have these social marathons, wish I could find something like that in Finland. But the language makes it almost impossible to find any running contacts.....
Happy New Year to you and your family - next year you're one more little person....

Stefanie Schocke said...

Awesome job! I, too, feel good when I run. I can feel sick all day, but it goes away when I run. Glad it does :)

Anonymous said...

Hej min ven.

Det var dejligt at se dig igår - om end kort.

Jeg er ked af, at jeg var et "pjok" ikke at løbe den fulde distance men jeg må sige, at ruten i den spejlglatte;-) strandpark virkede meget væmmelig på mig. Jeg var glad for, at jeg ikke skulle gennemløbe den to gange, men alligevel er jeg ked af, at jeg ikke deltog på den fulde distance. Men sådan var det og der kommer mange flere marathons i 2011.

Jeg synes du er så utrolig sej, Tracy, og du så fuldstændig uberørt ud af den lange tur.

Jeg glæder mig til vi ses igen. Forhåbentlig snart til nye løb.



Tor Rønnow said...

Nice speaking with you both and congrats again on the pregnancy. You can actually read interesting stuff about the effects of pregnancy in the book.

Best of luck forwards, we'll meet again ;)


cherelli said...

Congrats SLG! Nice job on the run, glad it was enjoyable - a great way to end 2010! Best wishes for 2011 :)

sea legs girl said...

Henriette -

Jeg var MEGET ked af vi ikke løb sammen. MEN der kommer flere løb. Du må bare fortælle mig om dem :). Du er min inside track.

Sikke et år du havde. Du er jo blivet en meget stærk løbere og jeg er så glad vi er venner... ikke kun fordi du er en god løbere jo.

Tor -

I'm so glad I finally had the chance to talk with you - always figured you would be an interesting guy! And yes, yes - I'll get the book! :). Maybe we'll see each other at the beloved Kalundborg Vintermarathon. I'm trying to convince my step-daughter to babysit in the clubhouse while I run the half.

Glaven Q. Heisenberg said...

We made it in with the 4:30 group, a bit late, at 4:37. And I only peed four times :).

I note, in passing, that you make no mention of stopping to pee.

I note, in passing, my reaction, viz.: Awesome!1!

In Re: "Mirror Slippery":
I remember once when I was a mere stripling of like 27 I worked with this woman straight off the boat from England, where they speak "English" instead of English? And once, when a friend of mine and I alluded to a couple who were - nudge-nudge - doing the nasty, her remark was, "O, at it like knives, hmm?"

I made a mental note right then and there never to have sex with a Brit-chick since they were incapable of differentiating sex from a knife fight. And you know the old Danish saying: "Strandpark ikke åt løbe pænis kiffë føgt", i.e., "Never bring a penis to a knife fight." (If that makes no sense to you, it's because it might be Finnish.)

Congrats on finishing your "SocialMarathon", whatever that is.

I made you a smaller version of your ginormous Title Picture. Maybe I'll send it to you, so you won't have to be so bitter about it.

Or maybe I won't, so you can be more bitter.

Anonymous said...

Congrats on the pregnancy! Cassandra Forsythe currently features women that worked out a lot during their pregnancies - great series, you`d like it:

SteveQ said...

I just posted my favorite songs of 2010 (No, not "I Whip My Hair back and Forth"). I was trying to find a recurring theme in the choices; it looks like it's the lyrics that snare me, then the emotional content - and in toto, my head was in some pretty strange places.

SteveQ said...

So... the three songs you hadn't heard of had to be among: Frightened Rabbit, Avett Brothers, Communist Daughter and Local Natives. Which of those had you heard? (I'd guess Communist daughter). I want to use the first few seconds of "Airplanes" by Local Natives as a ring tone. It always makes me laugh...

SteveQ said...

"Boxcar" if a boy
"Spandexina" if a girl...

SteveQ said...

The band is Communist Daughter, the song "Not the Kid." The lyrics would sort of give that away.

The Avett Brothers exploded on the folk/country circuit last year. Their previous albums were very different from 2010's (and January Wedding is not really typical of it).

I'm shocked you hadn't heard the LCD Soundsystem song, though "Dance Yrself Clean" was the song that everyone else loved - and it's pretty good.

I'd forgotten that some of my choices had been your running songs of the day; if you pick something I know, it doesn't register. And if I don't know it, it's usually not in English.

I keep wondering if Jens Lekman (not sure of the spelling) is big there, or if he just registered with some radio programmer here. "Friday Night Drive-In Bingo" is hysterical.

SteveQ said...

Spelled it right. Here's the video:

BrianFlash said...

Pretty awesome running a marathon pregnant! Good for you. I look forward to continuing to follow your exploits.