Thursday, May 19, 2011

Kate's Here!

Wow, it's been a crazy last few days. Kate's due date was May 18th but with babies, they come when they are ready! Mary had some random contractions for about an hour on Friday and left school early. I was thinking that the baby could be born at any time but after a couple of hours, the contractions went away.

On Sunday morning, she started having contractions again, which were about 10 minutes apart. That lasted for several hours, so I went ahead and got a short run in (it was a planned day off) in case we would have to make a hospital run soon. The contractions weren't getting any closer, so I didn't know what to expect.

We ended up leaving our small group a little early because Mary wasn't feeling good at all. I did some Google research and saw that she could have a few more days. She called the nurse, who told her she was fine but to call if anything changed. Within a few minutes, her contractions were only a few minutes apart and after a call to the nurse, we were on our way to the hospital.

Mary and I aren't the most experienced parents, so we were freaking out. We thought the baby could come out any second, so we got everything ready as fast as we could. Luckily I packed my hospital bag that afternoon, so that was ready to go. I sprinted the baby's car seat down to the car and Mary was running around, getting her stuff. I then yelled at Roxy to go outside and use the bathroom and then right away Mary yelled at Roxy to not use the bathroom because there wasn't enough time.

After a couple of minutes, we were on our way to Baptist Hospital (and Roxy still hadn't use the bathroom). We checked into our room and met with the nurse. She said Mary wouldn't deliver until the next day, which was a relief. However, we only got about an hour of sleep each and were exhausted.

Mary started delivering a little bit after noon. I thought for sure that I would pass out but I was surprisingly ok. After about 20 minutes, the baby was almost out. The doctor wasn't sure if Kate had enough room to come out, so she called another doctor to come in. Unfortunately, that doctor was in surgery, so Mary had to wait for an hour, without any pushing, even though the baby was almost out. When the other doctor came in, Mary gave one push and Kate was out.

Kate came out screaming and pitching a fit. She weighed six pounds and 14 ounces and was 19 inches long. We then had some alone time with her until friends and family started coming in.
I slept about 15 hours that night and felt a ton better on Tuesday.

She has a little fire in her and will get really upset and scream and shake her fists whenever she is laid down. As soon as you pick her up though, she stops. I'm sure she will turn out to be a handful.

They let us come back on Wednesday afternoon and now it's time for the real world. I'm glad to be back and start this new and exciting life.

Friday, May 13, 2011

New Beginnings

I figure that with so many changes going on in my life, starting a blog is a good way to record my thoughts about things happening in life and is slightly less girly than keeping a diary. Any day now I will become a father. Having a family is something that I have always wanted. Raising a child is a huge responsibility that will come with much joy and frustration. Fortunately, I could not have asked for a better wife to help me with the task.

After a several month search, Mary and I finally found what we are glad to call our first home. We are also almost fully settled into our new place and once the nursery is complete, I'll post pictures of our new home, along with my thoughts and experiences on the home buying experience.

The third major recent change in my life is my running. Running was a huge part of my life in both high school and college. Late in my college career, I started having some health issues which pretty much killed my running. I would run very well for several weeks, then crash and burn for an even longer period of time. I quit out of frustration and am now nearly two years into my second "comeback" after nearly three years off. Who knew that taking a pill that costs a few cents a day would totally revive my running. In a little over a year, I went from running at the level of a decent high school runner to someone who is making a run at qualifying for the 2012 Olympic Marathon Trials.

I'm sure this blog will just turn into a bunch of rambling about a variety of topics but hopefully it will contain some important snapshots throughout my life that I can visit anytime I wish and will one day let my daughter know how dorky I truly was.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Back in Training (sort of)

With Kate now in the world, the move complete and Country Music Marathon a few weeks in the past, it's time to start slowly training for the Chicago Marathon on October 9th. After CMM, I took eight days completely off and got in a little over 30 miles last week. I would have preferred to take off at least two weeks and have a longer build-up but life is about dealing with the cards you're dealt.

I divide my marathon training into three phases: the base phase, the speed phase and the marathon specific phase. For the Rocket City Marathon, I had nearly an eight month build-up. That enabled me to take my time with each phase and slowly transition to the next one, while allowing time for some down weeks. This past spring, I didn't worry so much about my marathon but spent more time building up my "engine" and becoming more relaxed at 5:00ish mile pace. I didn't take much rest after Rocket City, jumped right into progression runs and tempos and raced a ton, while I barely raced at all during my Rocket City Training. That training wasn't ideal for racing a marathon but if I want to be able to have a shot at running 26.2 miles at 5:18 a mile, I needed to get a little more speed in my legs.

My base phase this time will last about six weeks. It will mainly include a lot of easier running, which will give my body a break, let me charge my batteries back up some and build a little bit of basic aerobic endurance. I will also include 6-8 mile "medium runs" (about 90% of marathon pace) and work up to 9-10 mile progression runs. My long runs will only max out at 15 miles but I'll still try to work up to around 100 miles a week by the end of the phase.

I'll also run weekly all-out 10 second hill sprints with a lot of recovery to help with my strength/power, muscle fiber recruitment and stroke volume.

To be honest, this is my least favorite phase. You start out feeling rusty, do a lot of easier running without much of a time/pace goal and don't get in any races. However, you can't always train hard and expect to run at your best. The body needs time to repair itself and build a foundation for the harder training to come.