Sunday, November 22, 2009

Below Average Athlete

Many people have heard me say that I am a below average athlete just trying to be average. I love working out and pushing my body. I love being outside especially on a cold, rainy windy Seattle day exercising. It makes me feel like I did something for myself and I didn’t let the weather or anything else stop me. I have decided that I really don’t like gyms, but like being outside to workout. It brings me back to glorious days of spending all day outside running, biking, swimming, kicking or throwing a ball and hanging out with my friends as a child. However, I do face many challenges as an athlete. Remember I said I am a BELOW average one. My challenges are as follows:

Horrible genes: Both of my parents are not athletic in the least bit, and would be the first to admit it. My mother has no coordination. She has sprained her ankle several times, broken wrists and even managed to break both of her feet at the same time. My father has the nickname Jet because while playing softball with his friends in college, he hit a homerun yet only made it to second base. He has no speed whatsoever. My dilemma is clear here. The only things I have going for me are endurance, strength and a desire to keep doing it.

Lungs: I was born 7 weeks premature 36 years ago. Lungs are one of the last things to develop. Also, I grew up with two smokers. In this day and age, it is amazing to think that parents would smoke with the windows rolled up in the car with their children as passengers. (Especially my parents, who love both my sister and I to pieces and would never intentionally hurt us.) Common sense would say that is a bad idea, but this was 30 years ago and things were different. Admittedly, my parents did not have the best role models with this. Three out of four of my grandparents also smoked, and did the same things to them. To prove that smoking is bad for you, the three smoking grandparents died much sooner than the one that did not. The good news is that neither of my parents smoke now. I don’t hold it against them, as I have said before s*#t happens.

The Twins: Yes, I have rather large breasts. . . DD. I have to be really careful with those things or I might poke an eye out. Exercising with large boobs can hurt. It is not comfortable, but after many years of trial and error I have learned that the right sports bra or bras can make all the difference. I don’t just wear one, but two. The bottom layer bra provides the most support. I usually go to the running store and ask them for the biggest, most supportive and best bra they have. Then I put a regular sports bra over that usually from Target. I MUST have two sports bras!!!! When I see other large breasted women running with them flying all around about to knock them out, I want yell out, “I don’t know you but you really need two maybe three sports bras, and for god sakes do not wear just a plain old bra to run. It does not work; you are going to injure yourself or someone else." That is my advice from a Below Average Athlete.

While I face these challenges, I still do it because I love the endorphins and it is my version of Prozac. Just like a crack head, I am addicted to the high that accompanies working out. It makes me feel good and eases my nerves.

After a month and half of concentrating on IVF and not being able to work out, I got out for the first time yesterday to run. I only ran 2 miles, but it was worth it! Immediately, I was aware of my challenges again. I started very slow and my lungs burned as I took in the crisp air. I could feel the tightness around my chest as my bras held me in place and my lungs worked hard. I relied on my strength and endurance to get past the burn and keep going. As I ran along the lake, it lightly misted and the cold air made me feel alive again. I wasn’t worried about ovarian torsion, raising my body temperature or whether or not I would catch a cold from running in the rain. I wasn’t thinking about the number of follicles, the quality of the embryos or the reason why it didn’t work. All I was thinking about was pushing through and using my body to make me feel good again.

It turns out that I am not only a Below Average Athlete, but also a Below Average Procreator. I am not totally aware of my challenges, so it makes them harder to overcome. However, I know I have the endurance and strength to get through them and keep pushing forward. Hopefully, after consulting with the doctors, we will learn more and try again. But not before we take a break for me to get my body back and heal emotionally. GHuman and I have spent the weekend talking, planning and supporting each other. It has been a hard weekend, but I am thankful for having the best husband in the world by my side


  1. Hello. Here from LFCA. I think its great that you pursue your love of exercising. I too hate gyms and always walk outside (if I exercise). I learned this from my mother. Stop by my blog. I am founder of the non profit Parenthood for Erica

  2. Man, I could have written this post. I'm planning on running a half marathon in February after our failed IVF in October. I've been procrastinating on getting out there and back into running though. This post has encouraged me to just get back into it!