Training for my third half-marathon

This morning I completed an 11-mile run to prepare to run the inaugural Rock ‘n’ Roll Seattle Half-Marathon in 3 weeks. This evening it dawned on me it has been about nearly 5 months since I blogged about running. My blog was taken over by some guy who likes writing about his kid.

This race marks my third half-marathon in 9 months and my first since Owen arrived so it is a pretty big deal. I finally got serious about my training last month since TB and I were getting a handle on the whole new parent thing. She has been very supportive. My training requires lots of juggling and sacrifices on her part to allow me the time to go out for 1/2-2 hour runs several times a week when that time could be directed to giving her a break or us doing something together. As a runner herself—TB is the real runner in our family—she understands how being outdoors on the road helps keep my mind and body from turning to mush.

So, dear readers, do not fret. While I took an extended break from running after the Rock ‘n’ Roll Arizona in January, I am still on the wagon, in the saddle, racking up the miles with Nike+. I am looking forward to my wife and son cheering me on.

Speaking of cheering, here is a picture of our little guy in a custom Dallas Cowboys jersey from his Uncle Chuku. Team Smith will be cheering for the Cowboys this fall despite the many boneheaded front office decisions over the past year. Yeah, T.O. is no longer on the roster but you already know what I think about that.

Owen in Cowboys jersey - front  Owen in Cowboys jersey - back

Getting prepared for fatherhood

[This post includes a Baby Stats contest. Remember, you have to play to win.]

Stork and baby The baby countdown has resulted in a new form of March Madness now that we are near the final week.

It is all—ok, more like 99.99999%—excitement for me at this point but there is still a smidgen of fear in the deepest recesses of my brain. I know we will be fine on the things we can control but it is those things we outside our control that give me pause. It certainly has not been all roses for TB during the past couple weeks as the baby’s descent has made it harder for her to sleep and sit. Amazingly, she still doesn’t complain. In fact, she seems to want the baby to stay in there and gets mad at me when I try to coax the kid to come on out. I think she’s just trying to buy more time to decide on names.

Here is an ultrasound picture from week 29 (ten weeks ago!)

20090116_TBaby_04
29 weeks

I initially considered entitling this post “Getting ready for fatherhood” but I am convinced one is never ready. All I can do is work on my skills, gather advice and hope fortune favors the prepared. Once the baby arrives, I want TB to be able to focus on her wellbeing and the baby and not be concerned about anything else.

Keith Football 10In terms of my skills, I know how to take care of myself and my household. There is not a chore I haven’t done—I can thank my mom for that—but I’m a bit rusty on some things like ironing and washing clothes. I also know how to swaddle, change diapers, burp and perform other baby-related grunt and wet work thanks to having a couple much-younger siblings. I will need to be more efficient and tireless. Luckily, when I focus on something I really focus and I have my game face on as far as this baby is concerned. See picture to the right for my game face at age 10. You don’t want to mess with me. (Don’t hate on the ‘fro. 🙂 )

New skills I will have to acquire?

  1. Coping with our Ashford & Simpson dynamic duo becoming a Batman & Robin where I play Alfred Pennyworth.
  2. Monitoring my world through cries and dirty diapers instead of email and the Web.
  3. Trading in Dr. Dre for Dr. Seuss.
  4. Bathing a newborn. I hear Dustin Hoffman’s character screaming, “Hot water burn baby!” in the scene from Rain Man and imagine TB kicking me out the house.
  5. Celebrating holidays. TB and I are really bad about holidays and very grateful we have wonderful friends who do them brilliantly.

Those are the first things that popped into my head. There are lots of others. We are bringing in the big guns from the start in the form of grandmas and aunts starting with my MIL Rhon arriving tomorrow a full week before the baby is due and not a moment too soon.

As we head into the final week let’s have a Baby Stats contest.

Here is how points will be awarded:

  • Gender = 3 points
  • Syllables in first name = 5 points
  • Syllables in middle name = 7 points
  • Date of delivery = 9 points
  • Length = 11 points
  • Weight = 13 points
  • Time of birth = 15 points
  • Length of labor = 17 points

Rules:

  1. Closest numeric values win whether under or over
  2. Full points for every correct (or nearest) answer
  3. Labor starts at the point contractions have been at least 1 minute long, 5 minutes apart, for an hour and ends with delivery
  4. Entries must be submitted as a comment before labor begins
  5. One entry per person (adults only)

Prizes awarded for top 3 totals. In the event there are more than 3 ties at the top, we will award more prizes.