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Saying Goodbye to Boston

Saying Good Bye to BostonThis is a blog post that I definitely didn’t want to write and as I wrote it, the tears came back. After a lot of deliberation and weighing my options, I have decided not to run the 2015 Boston Marathon. As many of you know, I qualified back in May of last year, and was ecstatic, thinking that I would never have the opportunity to qualify. I registered and got in and B and I immediately booked our trip there. I started training in December and January. If you read my recent post, at the end of January B and I found out I was seven weeks pregnant. This explained my slower running throughout the month and me feeling ‘off’. After the news and approval from the doctor, I spent all of February trying to get in my long runs in and focusing on my mileage. It was very difficult and I was miserable every time I ran, which was very hard for me. I’ve never not liked to run and struggling so much, feeling horrible and not enjoying it was a new feeling for me. I gagged a lot and could only run very short distances.

At the beginning of March, I thought that I would work on starting over and not worrying about my miles as much, and I was entering my second trimester, where everything was magically suppose to get better. I tried to run and every time I ran I would only make it 4 miles before I would walk and not be able to run anymore. The first mile would be okay, after a bit of gagging, I would feel fine, the second mile would be great and then third mile would be fine, but right as I hit 3.5 miles, my body would just stop running, so I would finish the four miles and walk the rest of the way home. Just the other day I felt so good and was over zealous thinking I could easily do a 6 miler! I did a longer loop and just like normal, I had to stop at 4 and walk the 2 miles home.

After three weeks of attempting to run more than 4 miles and not succeeding, I started to grasp the reality that I was not going to be able to run Boston this year. I knew it was always a possibility in the back of my mind, but never thought it would actually happen and I would have to make this decision. I thought I would feel better or at least be able to run 10-13 miles and then I could walk the rest of the race, but four miles is a very, very long distance from 26.2 miles. I also have a very sensitive stomach (I take 3 Imodium when I run a full marathon) when I run and knowing I didn’t had the opportunity to practice fueling while pregnant also helped me make my decision. It was a very, very emotional decision and the first time I talked about it out loud with some one I could barely even say the words because I knew it was finally true. I wouldn’t be at the starting line on April 20th.

It has been hard because it’s the first question people ask me when they find out I’m pregnant. “What about Boston?!” and recently, I’ve had to hold back tears telling them about how I cannot run this year. As I talked about it with friends and family, they are all supportive either way but I know that at the end of the day if I cannot run more than 4 miles, it would not be a wise decision to attempt to run a full marathon. As the days continued to rapidly count down towards the race I knew I had to make a decision one way or the other. I was really upset at the time, but things have gotten easier and knowing that I qualified and have a new marathon PR still means so much to me. I know I wanted to run Mountains to Beach and leave everything out there, which I did and that race will always have such a special place in my heart. This year, April 20th, will probably be one of the hardest Bostons for me to ever hear about, but I know there will always be more marathons to run and I do hope to run it one year in the future, this just isn’t my year.

I know in the big scheme of things that come September there will be a lot of joy in my life from our new family member and my new running partner, and I know long-term this decision is the best one. After I finally made the decision that I wasn’t going to run and we canceled our hotel room and flight to Boston, I feel so much relief and I knew that I was making the right decision. It definitely stings a lot, but my running lately has felt a little bit more free, instead of the pressure of running with the mindset that I’m so far away from my training plan and how am I ever going to run Boston, now I can enjoy my 4 milers and just be happy I can run at all.

I really appreciated the comments on my last post and the people who reached out to me regarding my decision. I also found these two articles (1, 2)  to be really, really helpful. Here’s to all the four milers I have left to run until September and to those running Boston, cross the finish line with pride!

xoxo

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28 Comments

  • Reply MaryKate

    I’ll run 4 easy miles with you whenever you want.
    You’ll get to the start line in Boston one day, I know it.
    Thinking about you running buddy! :) :)

    March 23, 2015 at 7:51 pm
  • Reply Lauren @ sassy molassy

    Ah, I feel you. I can only imagine how tough this decision was as I know you worked really hard for that PR and rocked that race. But, you’re making the right decision and you’ll be in Boston with your little cheerleader down the road. And yes, keep up the running as you can. I’m down to running 1 min on/1 min off at 30 weeks, which barely feels like “running” as I know it, but it’s part of me that I’m trying to hold on to. Last week however, I did give in and went aqua jogging a few times, which felt pretty good.

    March 23, 2015 at 8:57 pm
  • Reply Sandy

    What a tough decision but based on how you feel it is the best decision for you. Boston is always going to be there so you have something to look forward to in the near future. I respect you for making such a tough decision and I think you have lifted a lot of stress off of your shoulders. Take care and focus on the little one now :) That is the most important thing right now.

    March 23, 2015 at 10:08 pm
  • Reply scallywag

    I wholeheartedly believe you’ll be at the Boston start line one day. Good luck with the rest of your running till September. And hold your head up high on April 20th- this situation is NOT a failure at Boston xx

    March 23, 2015 at 11:12 pm
  • Reply Selena

    I am so sorry that you had to make this choice, especially with all the work and hopes that have been involved. I had a similar experience with my third child and looking back, choosing to listen to what my pregnant body was telling me was the right thing to do. Boston will be there again when you are ready for it. And looking at the bright side, you can look forward to the whole baby jogger-training-for-a-marathon experience. It’s been a surprisingly positive experience for me – excellent training and you have company :-)

    March 24, 2015 at 1:31 am
  • Reply Sarah

    Oh I’m so sorry you are not able to run Boston as planned. I can only imagine how difficult it must have been to make that decision. Honestly, my husband & I have been married 4 years, and I’m 33, and I’m still terrified of becoming pregnant because of having to miss out on races I want to do and/or feeling like I’ll loose fitness & “be slow” etc. I know I shouldn’t feel that way, but it makes me wish that we could just have a baby without having to go through the whole pregnancy bit. We’re thinking of starting to try for one later this year & I keep looking at races I wont be able to do & feeling glum, and we’re not even pregnant yet! I guess all this to say I totally understand your feeling unhappy about this aspect of your pregnancy. I also can’t wait for you to have said baby & remind me how awesome it is to have a little one around to accompany you on your runs & make everything worth it :) Hopefully it will help me with my struggle…

    March 24, 2015 at 5:51 am
  • Reply Amanda - RunToTheFinish

    awe friend I’m really sorry about this. I know how hard it was to qualify (hello slow sistah here), so it is hard to let go of that achievement. The good news is no one can take that away and seriously every mother runner I know is faster than they were before so I have this feeling you’ll be back.

    March 24, 2015 at 8:30 am
  • Reply Jen@milesandblessings

    :( so hard…so sorry. You have the beautiful baby growing inside you though and that is such a blessing!!! And I must say I agree with Amanda^….us mothers…we come back and come back faster :)! I suppose each season of life has it’s ups and downs.

    March 24, 2015 at 8:42 am
  • Reply Rinat

    long time reader, first time commenter :)
    This is the first step into motherhood, putting the needs of your little one ahead of yours, as tough as it is.
    I kept wondering why isn’t she so excited about having a baby??
    Boston will ALWAYS be there, and many a woman has become faster after they have children.
    I just ran the LA marathon last Sunday and have 2 girls 3 and 7- and I know they’re proud of the accomplishment.
    One day you will have your whole family in tow cheering you on and it will mean so much more.
    Hang in there and congratulations- it’s been fun to see you grow up ;)

    March 24, 2015 at 8:45 am
  • Reply Jackie

    Ah, you have such a good guilt trip for when your little one is a sassy teenager — you better clean your room, I gave up BOSTON for you! ;)

    You’ll get there another time, girl! Enjoy your 4 milers and all the good and excitement that’s to come.

    March 24, 2015 at 8:47 am
  • Reply Layla

    If ever there was a reason to not run Boston, this one is it. And you didn’t just make a fast decision — you made a true effort and gave it time, so you’ll never think, “What if I hadn’t tried harder?” You DID try. And you listened to your body and that little being that’s growing inside you. Listening is the smart thing to do.

    You’ll make so many sacrifices over the years for this baby, but every single one of my friends who are parents all say that every sacrifice is worth it. I know April 20 will be hard for you this year, but don’t forget that you DID qualify and you DID have a fast enough time to get in. Nothing can ever take that away from you.

    March 24, 2015 at 9:19 am
  • Reply Emil

    We haven’t kept in touch much… so first of all, congratulations on the bun in the oven! Sorry to hear that you won’t be running Boston this year, but I’m glad that you’re looking at the big picture. You’re going to be a mom! How exciting! I’m sure you’ll be able to re-qualify some other year. Who knows, maybe I can actually get my butt in shape one of these years and join you in Boston! I wish you and your growing family well! Take care!

    March 24, 2015 at 9:49 am
  • Reply Christy

    Sorry to hear you can’t run Boston this year, but congrats on the baby!! I missed that post. I always wanted to run through my pregnancy, but I had such a hard time doing it the further I progressed. My energy just wasn’t there and honestly it’s hard running with a baby in your belly. It’s hard to have to give up your Boston dream, but I’m sure you’ll get back there some day & even if you don’t, once you hold that baby in your arms, you’ll realize that you would do ANYTHING for him/her even if it means putting your own dreams aside for a while. I’m excited for you!!

    March 24, 2015 at 9:49 am
  • Reply Danielle (daniruns)

    You’re a marathon rockstar no matter what. And I’m sure you are going to be an even more amazing running Mama. Keep your chin up, you followed your heart and that’s the most important thing. Boston will always be there and I’m sure one day you’ll kick that race’s butt. Just keep enjoying your pregnancy and how ever many miles you feel like running. As always, can’t wait to follow your journey and read how pregnancy is going for you :)

    March 24, 2015 at 11:30 am
  • Reply Miranda

    Thank you for sharing such an emotional experience. I’m sure you will qualify for the Boston again! Congratulations on your little one on the way. :)

    March 24, 2015 at 5:38 pm
  • Reply Sally @ sweat out the small stuff

    I found your blog back in 2013 when you helped dicks sporting goods spread their every runner has a reason videos. (I’m the Sally who found running after my hubby died).
    So I felt I needed to reply to return the support. You are grieving the loss of something that you worked so hard at qualifying for. Running Boston is that important to you. And of course having to pull out is heartbreaking. Be kind to yourself and let yourself grieve. You will feel better in time and then you’ll have a little one to fall in love with. I never thought I would have the opportunity to fall in love again but 15 years after his passing I found someone who I am so in love with. You WILL run Boston in the future. And how awesome for your child and your husband to cheer you on.

    March 24, 2015 at 5:48 pm
  • Reply Meredith

    Boston will always be there. And once you qualify you’ll be able to do it again and again. You’ve made the right decision and you won’t regret it. Promise. My little guy turns two on Friday and I’m running faster now than I ever have. This is not the end. It’s only a beginning. Congratulations.

    March 24, 2015 at 8:48 pm
  • Reply Lindsay

    I ran a half marathon when I was 17 weeks pregnant last November. Have you tried a run/walk combo? You haven’t mentioned that. I did a mile run with 5 minutes of walking. I made it through my half only 40 minutes slower than the previous year with a PR in that distance. I totally didn’t focus on the time. I kept up a run/walk combo, less mileage of course – went from mile to half to quarter – until I hit my 3rd trimester & finally had to walk all the time. I now have 3 weeks left & he’s dropped so I’m doing even less time walking.

    March 25, 2015 at 6:43 am
  • Reply Dawn Jolena

    That is bad timing about getting pregnant the first time you qualified. But, have the baby in September, then as you feel better and better, run with a baby jogger. When you finally get to “race” again, you will feel very very fast and be much stronger from pushing a baby around on your normal runs.
    Or you might be so thrilled with your bundle of joy that you decide your preferred method of working out is crawling around after baby ❤️
    XO
    Dawn
    http://www.BrilliantOrchid.com

    March 26, 2015 at 5:38 am
  • Reply Amy

    Oh, this brought tears to my eyes. Good for you for knowing your limits, you are awesome. Now go have a great 4 miler :)

    March 27, 2015 at 9:11 am
  • Reply Tiffany

    Difficult decision, yes, but it sounds like the right one. There’s a lesson in it all somewhere. Cheers to the 4 mile run, which is a heck of a lot more than most people do who are not pregnant!

    March 27, 2015 at 6:31 pm
  • Reply Tyly

    Holy moly, I am SO behind! I am on IG all the time, but I read blogs sporadically now, so I completely missed that you’re pregnant!! CONGRATULATIONS! I have no doubt that decision was so hard for you, but from what it sounds like, it’s the right one. Boston isn’t going anywhere, and you’ll get there one day!! :)

    March 29, 2015 at 4:18 pm
  • Reply Caitlin

    Sorry to hear that Boston has to be postponed. Even with a reason as wonderful as a baby, that wouldn’t make it easy. (Though I have to say I have a lot of non-running friends who might not understand that.)

    All the best in the coming months, and I hope you start feeling better soon!

    April 4, 2015 at 2:11 pm
  • Reply Shannan

    I am a long-time reader and first-time commenter.:)
    I have a six-month-old baby. And my pregnancy, recovery (emergency c-section)and getting back into running has caused me to miss two of the most important races of my short running life. I cried and cried. And reading your story caused me to well up again. I am no where close to where I was but I am getting back slowly. The important thing is that I am working on it and realizing that while running will never be the same, my Spring and Summer running plans include a beautiful little boy being propelled by me in one of my fantastic baby shower gifts – a jogging stroller.
    Thank you so very much for sharing! Congratulations!

    April 6, 2015 at 1:31 pm
  • Reply Bonnie Dewkett

    I logged on to wish you well in Boston, but this is even better news! Congratulations!!!!

    April 12, 2015 at 1:21 pm
  • Reply Dana

    Congratulations on your pregnancy! I totally understand how hard it was to make the decision not to run Boston this year; as runners, one of the hardest things to accept is limitations on our physical ability. But really, coming back to running after having a baby is THE BEST! I found a whole new motivation and drive after my first baby, and dropped over 8 minutes from my marathon PR within 9 months of delivering. I’m certain that you will get to that starting line in Hopkinton when the time is right. Hang in there, and best of luck with the rest of your pregnancy!

    May 11, 2015 at 8:07 am
  • Reply Sachie

    Hi Danica,
    I have not visited your blog for quite a while… so congrats. You made a good decision.
    Just fyi, since I am going through it now…for a while running won’t be the same post partum. I don’t know how some women “seem” to pick up and run. But… my first run after birth was super exciting for me because I missed it so much.

    June 19, 2015 at 1:37 pm
  • Reply Sachie

    Sorry I want to emphasize “CONGRATS”!!!!! YAY! Baby Chicrunner!

    June 19, 2015 at 1:38 pm
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