I Was Scared.

Last weekend, I ran with my Garmin watch for the first time since September 2013. Well, and the last time I ran “with” it, it wasn’t even on MY wrist. Birdie happily took the duty of watching my pace during the Hamptons Half Marathon, knowing I was 3 weeks pregnant and definitely not interested in pushing myself.

That arm on the left? That's Birdie's arm and my watch.

That arm on the left? That’s Birdie’s arm and my watch.

I felt like crap during that race. I felt like I was running in the sand (not my favorite place to run) at 12,000 ft. It was awful. Turns out, my slowest pace was 8:00/mile and everything else was sub-8:00. I only ran 3.5 minutes off my PR because I was in shape to run the marathon, but I had to FIGHT for every mile.

I put my watch away after that and ran how I felt with my growing belly.

After I had my son, I was slow to return to running. I knew I wasn’t physically ready to support that type of repetitive impact, so I focused on getting strong. #getstrongbeforeyougolong

Which brings us to this week when I (literally) dusted off my Garmin for a run with my little running buddy.

Bright shoes, happy baby, GO!

Bright shoes, happy baby, GO!

So what the hell took me so long to put that stupid watch back on?

I was scared.

Scared I wouldn’t like the numbers I saw. I asked Birdie on a run back in November what our pace was. She replied with a number that made me feel like crap. To be fair, we were going into a head wind, but I still wasn’t cruising.

I was so scared to feel disappointed in myself that I wasn’t “back” to where I was pre-baby. In hind sight, it was a smart decision. In spite of being a total coward, not brining my Garmin has made this year’s runs feel casual and relaxing.

Summer Streets with a 2 month old? Sweet!

Summer Streets with a 2 month old? Sweet!

Even though the numbers I’m clocking aren’t any great shakes, I’m slowly making my way back to paces I know are pretty good for me. I’ll probably leave the Garmin at home more often than not until I get into actual training mode for the Rock ‘n Roll Half in Brooklyn this October, and that’s ok.

In spite of my cowardice being the reason I avoided my Garmin for almost 2 years, I feel like it was the right move for me. I just wish I had done it more by choice and less because of fear of disappointment and frustration.

Live and learn, right?

Oh, and happy birthday to the very best reason to leave my Garmin at home.

Now go out and run!

Running-ish

I didn’t imagine it this way. I figured that 8 months post-partum, I’d be back running 3-4 days a week and feeling strong on my runs and ready to train for a half marathon by now.

Here’s the reality:

  • I run 1-2 days a week. That’s a good week. Some weeks I run zero days.
  • I go to Refine (thank goodness I’m an Ambassador for them!) 3 times a week.
  • I’m signed up for a half marathon in July.

I’m ready for the sidewalks and roads to get less icy so I can run to and from Refine. I hate sitting on the bus or in a cab when I could be getting some miles. I’m gonna be sweaty anyway, right?

Pudgy hand on my chest = heart melt.

Pudgy hand on my chest = heart melt.

So what’s a runner to do when she has very little time to run? Me? I complain to Birdie (sorry, Birdie) and run when I can.

When I run with the Mountain Buggy jogging stroller, I just run at whatever pace feels comfortable. If JB or Birdie runs with me and the stroller, they push the stroller and I we just mosey along.

If I’m running on my own, I do a workout. I hit the track or the treadmill and do something involving sprints or repeats. I run to Central Park and bust out some hills. Between Refine Method (thank you, Brynn) workouts and these runs, I’m in relatively ok shape.

Hello, old friend.

Hello, old friend.

There are legitimate barriers to my running. My kid (the happiest, cutest reason I sometimes can’t run), my absolutely bonkers school schedule, the crazy slippery road conditions we’ve had, and life choices.

But part of being a smart runner is recognizing where I am now and what I can do. Placing unattainable standards and goals on my plate will only serve to make me a very angry, frustrated Abby.

And no one likes pissed-off Abby.

So there you have it. I’m running-ish. Looking very forward to the Spring when I won’t be nervous about skidding around with the stroller or the air being too cold for the munchkin. Oh, and I get to be done with school.

Yaaaaaaaay!

That’s the state of things in my running world. Where are you? Are you running or running-ish?

Ready for Summer running.

Ready for Summer so I can get back to running, not running-ish.

Now go out and run!