Monday, January 18, 2010

Welcome to My World

Hello everyone! I'm Andi and yes, like many others, I have decided to enter the blogging world. I don't really know if what I have to say will appeal to many people or any people at all. I figure it will make for a great journal in the least!

About me:
Well, I think most people that know me would refer to me as a runner. I ran track in jr. high, high school and college and then dabbled in running and triathlons until 2003. At that point, I gave it all up and focused on school. I was in a very unhappy marriage which was made worse by struggling with severe male factor infertility. Our only hope was IVF but he was a full time student and although I was working full time as an audiologist, I was also in school part time finishing my doctorate. Family was going to have to wait until our financial situation turned around. So move forward 3 years and we still didn't have a family, he still hadn't finished school and there I was with 45 lbs to lose-the heaviest I had ever been in my life. I had finished my doctorate so I had no excuses now. I remembered how happy I had been when I was a runner and wanted to start again but at 5'5" and 170 lbs, it was too hard on my joints. I decided right then I was going to change my life. At the time I thought that meant lose weight and start running again. Little did I know that was only the tip of the iceberg.

I joined Weight Watchers and quickly lost enough weight to start running again. Once I did that, the weight came off even quicker. I joined the Little Rock Roadrunners Club and became a member of their competitive racing team. By the time the 2007 racing season started in January, I was down to my college racing weight! I started attending training runs with the club and became friends with the most wonderful group of people. At the same time, I got a huge raise at work for finishing my doctorate. I was now super healthy, very happy and had the money to go forward with IVF. Unfortunately my husband was no longer on board and we decided to divorce. It was actually a great thing. He still hadn't finished school. He had no idea where his life was going and I suddenly felt like I was in complete control of mine. That year, I trained harder than I ever had and was the third overall female in the state wide running series. In March, I met a guy, Brian, on a training run and we quickly became best friends. He coached me through my marathon training at the end of 2007 which lead to me qualifying for the Boston Marathon. Life was good. I headed into 2008 with more running goals than you could imagine. The season started off kinda slow. I wasn't running like I thought I could and when Boston rolled around in April, I ran much slower, 3 hours and 49 minutes, than I had hoped. When I got back to Arkansas I signed up to run the Chicago Marathon and started some serious training. Within a few months I was running times faster than I had ever imagined. I ran a 19:42 5k in August and I knew things were going to go well at Chicago. Brian and I decided to elope and felt that doing it right after the marathon would be the best timing ever. I ran Chicago on October 12th and finished in 3 hours and 22 minutes which beat my best marathon time by more than 17 minutes. Two days later Brian and I got married in beautiful Key West. Life was perfect.

When we returned home it was a very busy time. I had just accepted the position of Arkansas State Representative to the Road Runners Club of America. That meant that I would be in charge of the Grand Prix Series which is a state wide series of races lasting from January to November of every year. Thankfully, Brian had been deeply involved with the organization for many years so he was able to provide a lot of direction and some much needed help. While we were planning for the 2009 series I found out that I was pregnant. We were TTC but it had only been one cycle so it really did come as a shock-especially after my previous experience with infertility. We were both so happy. For a week I floated on a cloud and was so excited about our little secret. Only 6 days later I woke up and found that I was spotting. A few hours later I was full on bleeding and the happiest week of our lives came to a very sad ending. As bad as it was, I knew that miscarriage was quite common so I tried to be as upbeat as I could. I had gotten pregnant on the first cycle. This was a good sign. Also, the Grand Prix Series was starting and I didn't have time to dwell on it. In February, just days before the second race of the season, I found out that I was pregnant again. Other than a bleeding scare at 8 weeks, the pregnancy was uneventful. I was even able to run until I was 36 weeks!

On October 14th, 2009, our one year wedding anniversary, we welcomed our son, Darwin Beck into this world. Like most first time moms, I was shocked at how much my life changed. Getting a training run in is a real challenge now. We bought a treadmill and this helps a lot. When I went back to work 12 weeks after he was born things got even crazier. I always wonder how I'm going to get everything done between 10 hour shifts at work, spending time with Darwin, being a wife to Brian, organizing the Grand Prix and trying to get some training time for myself. I realize that by trying to make it all happen I may make myself crazy but I've always been an overachieving type A personality so I simply must try. I plan to use this blog to document my running comeback, Darwin's milestones and any pearls of wisdom that I find along the way.


Amy said...

Great job on the blog so far!! I love your little guy!

Kayla said...

oh my your baby is just beautiful!

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