Sunday, June 29, 2014

"Moderate Activity"


Overheard: OB/GYN office

So the ruling on the table is... NO bed rest (which, apparently, isn't even a thing anymore unless you're actively going into labor early), but to modify my schedule and activity level down to a "moderate level of activity."

I made the doctor define that....

Me: So I can do regular things like laundry and grocery shopping?

OB/GYN: Well, maybe. Don't carry full laundry baskets up and down the stairs. Is your washing machine in the basement?

Me: Yes. So don't carry full loads? Just half loads?

OB/GYN: No. Don't carry things up and down the stairs on a regular basis. You're starting to worry me. And don't carry all of your groceries in the house in one trip.

Me: So... like only 2 bags at a time?

OB/GYN: NO! Only one bag at a time. One. Light. Bag. Seriously. You're asking me the wrong questions right now.

Me: Well, it's not like I'm going back to running or anything...

OB/GYN: Seriously? Are you being serious? No running. Maybe gentle walking. Around the block. Slowly. With nothing in your hands.

Me: Ok. I'm a massage therapist. I can still work, just no deep tissue massages?

OB/GYN: If you are sweating, or clenching any muscles, don't do that. Look, I'm getting a real feel for what you consider moderate activity here, and I think I should just tell you to stick with "light activity", and hope that you hit some middle ground. I can't have you breaking an ankle, or taking a tumble, or giving yourself heat exhaustion in the next 3 months. Just hold on for a few more months and then I don't care what you do. Or just think about asking anyone else, "Should I do this?" and then imagine that will tell you "No" and then don't do that thing. Also, come back on Monday. Morning. First thing. I want someone to check on you.

Friday, June 27, 2014

I'm Gonna Sit Right Down and.... well, just keep sitting for a while

I'll skip the biology. The baby is fine. I'm fine. But after a few hours in a hospital yesterday the doctors told me to restrict my activity for 24 hours and come back to the office for a check up.

You'd think that would be easy. Rest. Take a break. Sit down. Watch a movie (or 6). Read a book. But the second someone tells me I have to do something, is when I don't want to do it!!! I'm telling you, the laundry basket is laughing at me. The dishwasher is repeating my name. And the pile of toys in the living room is creeping around the floor on its own power.

In other (unrelated) news: I found a new shrink! Nothing was wrong with the old one, but I wanted to make sure that with all the baby stuff, I had a female therapist on stand-by. And now I do! The threats Stephan made that encouraged me to do the research and schedule the appointment were creative and emphatic. So don't think I did all that on my own. Most things around here are a team effort lately.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Not Quite a Pregnancy Dream

**Edited to spell "Rocky" correctly**

I don't make a habit of being on the internet right before bed (it's just not good sleep-hygiene). But last night I scrolled through the Runner's World website, and stared longingly at the Run Outfit of the Day (RUNootd), while wishing I could just run a mile again.

A few hours later, in my sleep, I ran. My smaller, more efficient, body tackled the familiar streets of my neighborhood, and then did a Rocky-esque loop through the stadium at Wrigley Field: pounding into the turns and twists of the concrete ramps up to the top of the seats. Stephan was there, running next to me, and we talked and ran happily together (just like we never really have... so this was obviously a dream).

It sure beats that old Zac Effron pregnancy dream!!

Friday, June 13, 2014

Surprisingly Settled

I'm often surprised at how insightful I was when I named my blog, "Who Moved my Finish Line." Every few months or years I notice how my focus changes. Right now, I'm really not focused on running. After the week in Denver I haven't put my running shoes back on. I haven't involved myself in any type of organized exercise. I haven't even taken a purposeful walk.

And I'm shocked at how ok I am with that. When walking up the stairs puts me out of breath, and one imbalanced meal sends me over an emotional and physical cliff, adding up miles just doesn't seem quite as vital.

Weird, right?

I'm just about 6.5 months pregnant. I'm starting to think about lightening up my work load (not now... but eventually). We have a busy summer planned until August, when I'm assuming I'll be spending a lot of time trying to breath and refolding tiny shirts. We've started knocking house projects off of our list of things to do- and just generally get into whatever type of summer routine works for us.

This is a pretty good place to be right now.

(Side note: I'm doing amazing professional things right now. My exhaustion level has a lot to do with how excited I am to be getting my hands on the people I've had the privilege to be working with right now... regardless of the 12-hour work days.)

Sunday, June 8, 2014

"Crazy Can't Get Enough"

That's a quote from a Hoka One One ad. I read it this morning and instantly fell in love with it.

What's Crazy lately? I've been busy. I spent a week in Denver at a Trauma Touch class. I've been working a ton (which is fantastic). And I haven't put running shoes on since Mother's Day.

But I did just have the most amazing running-related experience yesterday at the Madison to Chicago Ragnar. I knew I wasn't going to run it when I calculated that I would be 6 months pregnant (!!) for the weekend. But I had a team I wanted to support, and actually missed participating in the event. So when I logged onto the Ragnar website I saw there was an extra-special volunteer opportunity. It's called the SWAT team.


The shifts range from 12 - 30 hours. Whomp. For the most intense involvement, rental cars, sleeping shifts, and hotel rooms are involved, as is lifting up to 45lbs. My max is 15 right now, so I knew I'd have to beg to be a part of the team.

A long internet application, 25 minute phone interview, and some confirmation details later, I was assigned a 12 hour shift in Lake Forest, IL at exchange 31. I was the exchange manager for this "minor exchange". The job started at 4:45am and ended at 5pm with no scheduled break. I was in charge of two six-hour shifts of 6 volunteers each who were all there to support other teams. I had a phone-training session, and a packet of pdf's and excel spreadsheets to review. I sent out all the confirmation emails and received messages back that every volunteer would be there.

I had a lot of trouble sleeping the night before. I woke up just before 3am to eat and pack my breakfast/lunch/dinner, drinks, snacks, water for myself and the volunteers, table, chairs, sunblock, giant hat, cowbells, etc. etc. etc. I skipped coffee and went straight to a small bottle of coke.

The day was beautiful. Partly cloudy, just barely 80 degrees, a great breeze coming off of the lake.

The volunteer t-shirt was adorable. Every volunteer showed up on time, with their own snacks and water packed, ready to work. They set up and did their jobs with SO much enthusiasm! They cheered on EVERY runner while directing traffic, runners, timing, and spectators. Things got pretty crazy for a few hours. Just when the heat started climbing, a gush of runners and vans and teams crushed into our tiny little parking lot. The volunteers kept their cool and never stopped shouting encouragement to the runners.

I checked on every position about once an hour, but they never needed anything more than a short potty break or a fresh bottle of water. I never once heard a complaint. They smiled through their entire 6-hour shift. Every person was amazing. When I asked, "Do you need anything? A break? How are you doing?" most of them told me they were fine, and asked how I was doing!! Some of the older women even instructed me to sit down and put my feet up for a while- they had everything handled.

And when the last runner passed our exchange we cheered as loudly for her as for the first one... 6 hours earlier. The clean-up crew broke everything down efficiently, and we left the parking lot cleaner than we found it. The Ragnar staff handled all of my questions almost instantly, with humor, professionalism, and gratitude toward me. We had every supply we needed, and never had to ask for refills.

I recommended the SWAT crew to a few runners who asked what job I was doing, and even encouraged some of the interested volunteers to apply for next year. I had such an amazing experience, I can't wait to volunteer again next year. Hopefully I'll be able to take on a bigger role- but even a "minor" exchange was a major experience.