Third Trimester Running

“So close, yet so far” was my third trimester mantra.

big ol belly awaiting pancakes
big ol belly after destroying pancakes

The last three months were inevitably the toughest.  It was around this time that I realized my belly growth, the amount of energy I had, and the quality of my runs ebbed and flowed in 2-3 week cycles. I would have a super, super shitty week; dragged ass throughout the day and was simply tiiired on my runs.  Like could have finished running, laid on the road and fallen into a deep sleep. The next week or so I would feel great, but my belly would be bigger!  My near and dear friend and (at the time) pregnant running partner Megyn, experienced the same cycle.  I’m positive it correlates with baby growth spurts.  Your body is using up all your energy one week to manufacture your little one inside of you and the next week, your baby and belly has clearly grown. Tune into your body- your energy, your weight and your belly growth and see if you encounter the same thing.  I imagine you don’t have to run while you’re pregnant to experience this ebb and flow and exercising just accentuates it.

The bigger I got, the longer my post run recovery time lengthened. After a long run I would be mildly sore and tired for a few hours. Usually sitting down and relaxing and having a big, healthy meal did the trick.

The WORST part of running (or even walking for that matter ) during the third trimester was having to pee ALL the time.  With every damn stride, I had to pee!  I would be running and feel like I had the world’s worst UTI and could stop and stand still and no longer feel like I had to go.  I FEARED going on walks or runs without knowing where the nearest restroom was.  The ‘having to pee 24/7’ urge hit me at 29 weeks pregnant.  I remember it plain as day because I practically peed my pants on a popular boardwalk in NY.  I was visiting family in Long Beach and while out for a jog had to dive into a squat behind a bench because I started peeing my pants OUT OF NO WHERE.  One minute I would be fine and the next I felt the ‘crossing my legs, holding my crotch, bouncing up and down, waiting in the bathroom line’ urge to pee- the absolute worse!

I tried everything to subdue the peeing urge.  I tried not drinking water before my early AM runs.  I made sure I peed 45893274985 times before walking out the door.  I tried holding it because “maybe its psychological.” (It’s not!).  I even caved, went against my intuition and tried a belly band.  None of it worked.

A couple things that DID help were accepting it and planning routes with bathrooms, whether it was a port a potty, gas station or restaurant, I made sure there was a place to stop, drop and pee  on my route!  On some 5 mile runs, I would stop 5 times.  No joke- the WORST (my poor running partner too!). Next was cutting out coffee before I ran. The caffeine in coffee has a strong diuretic affect and the caffeine itself stimulates our little bladders making the urge to have to go, even worse!

Hubby and me after the Wormsloe 10k
Hubby and me after the Wormsloe 10k

Since I mentioned it, I’ll touch on the belly band.  A belly band never seemed like a good idea to me.  First and foremost, god created women to carry babies.  We 100% capable of doing so.  The moment you introduce a crutch, aka a belly support band, you are making yourself dependent on the crutch.  As your belly and baby grow, your body will adapt and strengthen itself in the places that need strengthening.  The moment you introduce a support band is the moment your body will stop fully adapting in the ways it needs to adapt because it has an external support.

So after that rant, why did it I try it? I tried EVERYTHING to help with the peeing issue, but the belly band too did not help. On top of not relieving my urge to pee with every. single. step, it chaffed me and was hot! I did not like it, not one bit.

Our dog did nine too!
Our dog did nine too!

My 3rd trimester miles, notice I did cut back towards the end… sort of.

28 weeks Aug 20, 7 Aug 21, 5 +lift Aug 22, 5.5 Aug 23, 6 Aug 24, 4.5 + lift Aug 25 off Aug 26, 5
29 weeks Aug 27, 7 Aug 28, 5.5 Aug 29, 6 Aug 30, 5 Aug 31, 5 Sept 1, off Sept 2, 5.5 Sept 3, 6.5
30 weeks Sept 4, 5.5 Sept 5, 3.5–lift Sept 6, 5 Sept 7, 5.5 Sept 8, off Sept 9, 4 + lift Sept 10, 6.5
31 weeks Sept 11, off Sept 12,  5 Sept 13, 6 Sept 14, 5 Sept 15, off Sept 16, 5.5 Sept 17, 5.5 
32 weeks Sept 18, 4 Sept 19, 6 Sept 20, 3.5 Sept 21, 8 Sept 22, off Sept 23, 5 Sept 24, 3.5 + lift
33 weeks Sept 25, 6 Sept 26, 5.5 Sept 27, 4.5 Sept 28, off Sept 29, 5.5 Sept 30, 6 Oct 1, 4 + lift
34 weeks Oct 2, 5 Oct 3, 4 Oct 4, 6 Oct 5, 5.5 Oct 6, off Oct 7, 5.5 Oct 8, 5.5
35 weeks Oct 9, 6 Oct 10, 5.5 Oct 11, off Oct 12, 4 Oct 13, off Oct 14, 6 Oct 15, 4 + lift
36 weeks Oct 16, 5 Oct 17, 3.5 Oct 19, 9 Oct 20, off Oct 21, 5.5 Oct 22, off
37 weeks Oct 23, 5.5 Oct 24, 6 Oct 25, 7 Oct 26, 3.5 + lift Oct 27, gave birth at 6:35AM


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