So, I used to run. A lot. And I thought, when I got pregnant, that I would keep running. Then, along about 8 weeks into the pregnancy, I started to feel very sick. And tired. And running wasn't very fun. I could barely make it through the work day. So I stopped running. After my first trimester I definitely felt better. But I didn't start running again. Because I was lazy.
Since the Bean was born, I kept promising myself I would get back to running. I love running and I missed it. But I didn't. Because starting back at zero with absolutely no lung power? Very discouraging. And spending time away from my precious Bean? Not very desirable.
But I am trying to get myself back into shape, lose those last 5 pounds of "baby weight" and treat myself to some "me" time. So I have been quietly trying to start running again in hopes of doing another half-marathon in June.
It's going pretty good. Husband has been on Bean duty when we get home from work on M-W-F so that I can get out for a quick (as in short, not as in speedy) run, and I've been going out once on the weekends. My 2 mile run is getting easier, and I'm starting to feel better about it. My lungs don't burn quite as much, and I'm not dreadfully sore the way I was after the first couple of runs. All in all, I'm pretty happy with my progress so far, even though my runs are still pitifully short. Once I can get my lungs into shape again, I can start increasing the mileage. My legs and joints are doing well, so I know that won't be a problem.
All of this to tell you about my run last night.
When I used to run, I would often get catcalls from construction workers and honked at by passing cars. It always made me feel really self-conscious about my body, and I detested it. But I was usually running during the day, with people around. So it would piss me off and make me uncomfortable, but I could deal with it.
Last night I went for my (pathetic) run after work. It was rainy and getting close to dark (because I live in the land of no sun and crappy weather). In the first 3 minutes of my run, a car honked at me. It kinda pissed me off, but it wasn't too bad. Well, towards the end of my run, I'm on a side street and there's a group of about 4 male teenagers up ahead. And I start to get really anxious. Eyes down, I forge ahead.
They don't say a word to me, but I can hear them laughing across the street. As I pass, two of them actually turn around to look at me. My cheeks burn and I pick up the pace.
A non-event, perhaps, but it made me really upset. I doubt that male runners experience the same kind of discomfort when they're out training. It's frustrating to feel like I can't just go out for a run without feeling intimidated and harassed by strangers. What in the hell makes men (and boys) feel like they have the right to harass a woman on the street? To at best make her feel self-conscious and at worst make her fear for her safety.
Mamas don't let your babies grow up to be cowboys...
Contest Entry : Rejection Letters, 6
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