She Says… Plans Change


First things first: I am not a runner. Until about a year ago, my only experience with running was being forced to run “The Mile” in gym class. And let me tell you, that was a traumatic experience. Every year. Even now, as a very fit and active person, running is hard for me. Mere minutes into a run my heart rate skyrockets, my breathing goes into overdrive and I’m sweating like a man pig. Over the last year I have made a more concerted effort to run longer, and more often, to see if I could ever be one of those people who nonchalantly say, “I’m going to go for a run”. As it turned out, it got easier the more I did it. I began to like the challenge. So when someone at my office decided to put a team together for the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure back in January, I signed up immediately. I was ready to run my first 5K.

And then my plans changed.

As you all have seen, I’ve struggled with exercising (over-exercising, specifically) as we’ve run into challenges trying to make a baby. Was that the problem? Was it too much stress to put on my body? What if I’m pregnant and my heart rate gets too high? For awhile I put my running on hold, concentrating more on low-impact cardio and strength training. And then my doctor confirmed that it was the PCOS, and not the exercise, that was causing the anovulation, so I was given a clean bill of health to continue exercising. But I had realized during that time that I really liked my more holistic and balanced view of exercise (spending my time in yoga classes or on long walks with my dog instead of sweating it out day after day on the machines at the gym to reach a certain calorie burn). So I stuck with my new, more relaxed workout schedule, but kept doing one 4-mile run a week, mostly so that I could still run the 5K.

Yesterday was the 5K. And now that we’re officially in our first “two week wait”, I just didn’t feel comfortable putting my body into that type of stress. For these two weeks, I want to be calm, respect my body and not do anything to jeopardize what could be going on in there. And that definitely means no 5K. Now, I know the rule of thumb is that if you had an established exercise routine (including running) before you were pregnant, you are generally ok to continue that level of exercise once you get pregnant until it’s no longer comfortable. However, I also know that exercise causes excess cortisol, a stress hormone, to be released. And I don’t want my body dealing with hormone changes when it should be dealing with implantation!

So I showed up at the race, got my t-shirt, and happily walked the 3.1 miles. As I saw runners breathlessly crossing the finish line, I felt a twinge of jealousy. But the fact is, my plans have changed. I’ve got more important things for my body to be doing. Let’s hope it’s doing them!

11 responses to “She Says… Plans Change

  1. You definitely need to do what feels right to you and if that means walking a 5K race then that is what it means. I’ve also stuck mostly with walking and yoga for a while now, and I’m loving it. I know its great for my body and mind, and keeps the doldrums away (that is the main reason I exercise, because it helps me not to be so depressed). Anyway, you should feel very comfortable in your decision.

    Good luck with the 2WW!

  2. Good for you walking. You’ll run it some other time.

    I did not know you were a non-runner sort of runner, which is what I was for a couple of years. We’ll have to talk non-runner running sometime, though I’ve abandoned running entirely recently.

  3. I feel like I can so relate to your life right now, minus the clomid. First, this was our first month to try, I used the OPK and got a positive on 9/19, expecting my period 10/5 and this two week wait is tough. Second, I am a runner too and my doctor told me to scale it back before I started trying, I have been nervous running for the past week and only went once, on the slowest jog of all time and really enjoyed it, I took the time to imagine the potential good news. Third, my husband is in NY for work all the time and I was worried that he would be gone the few days there was a chance, we lucked out with the timing this month.

    Anyway, this is like the longest comment of all time, but I am crossing my fingers for you and for me. I will be visiting your site on 10/6!

  4. Kate, Good for you! Some people can’t even imagine being able to walk that far. We’ll run one in a few years with our strollers…and gossip the whole way.

    We are thinking about you this week!

  5. Great job! I know that’s got to be hard to step away, or at least back off, from something that you love. But you’re right, if it increases your chances of conceiving, it’ll be worth it!

  6. i think you found a wonderful balance and perspective on things…

  7. Aww….I’m sorry to hear you had to let go of something you love. But this change will hopefully be a harbringer of good news 🙂

  8. Esperanza, Thank you! I find that yoga and walking has had a positive impact on my mood and attitude also. Certainly helps me to slow down a little and appreciate the present.

    Lisa, Yes! I didn’t know YOU were a non-runner runner. Maybe someday we’ll both pick it up again, in a non-runner sort of way, of course.

    MyHormonesMadeMeDoIt, How nice to have someone going through the same things at the same time! Good luck to you too! Hopefully good news for both of us next week.

    Erin, YES. I can’t wait for that. Seriously.

    Tabitha, It certainly will! You’re right — it’s a small price to pay if all goes according to plan.

    Lynn, Thank you! I really appreciate that.

    Nabeela, Yes! Let’s hope so!

  9. definitely better safe than sorry!!! i saw a cute pregnant woman at my race yesterday. her shirt said “running for 2” on the back

  10. haya, that is SO cute! Good for her.

  11. I don’t know If I said it already but …Excellent site, keep up the good work. I read a lot of blogs on a daily basis and for the most part, people lack substance but, I just wanted to make a quick comment to say I’m glad I found your blog. Thanks, 🙂

    A definite great read..Jim Bean

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