Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Slowing it Down

I hate Slow Walkers.

For me, getting from Point A to Point B is a sport, and I've prided myself on being an Olympian in this event.  I look beyond the slow walker, scoping out the available spots, and planning my sling-shot navigation of the busy sidewalks.  I quickly gauge my speed and size and complete complex mathematical equations to quickly determine if I can dodge Fat Man with Suitcase and scoot in front of Foreign Tourist with Map, before slamming into Mountain of UPS Packages Sitting in the Sidewalk.

It is My Thing, and I'm great at it.  At least, I used to be- before I was pregnant.

Now, I have become the very thing I despise.  One of the most startling discoveries I've made in recent weeks is that my stamina has gone out the window.  While most people may not even notice I'm pregnant (though I do- none of my regular clothes fit anymore), my body sure as Hell knows, and reminds me when I get a little too full of myself.

After a few blocks of hustling and dodging, I get light headed and overheated, and I am forced to walk at the same pace as our elderly neighbor, Irene.  Actually, Irene is faster.  I can't lie.  I find myself keeping to the right on the sidewalk, out of respect for the fast walkers who are likely cursing me.  My timing is all off now, too- what used to take me 10 minutes now takes significantly longer.  And the stairs coming out of the subway?  Puh-leeze.  No more jogging up those bad boys.  I make good use of the handrail, and try to keep moving.

I started going back to the gym this morning, and have to slow it down there, too.  When some hardbody gets on the elliptical next to me, I can't secretly race her anymore.  I am forced to focus on my own workout- and on Kathie Lee and Hoda- and not compete with those around me.

Maybe that's the problem I'm having.  I'm no longer a contender.  I've had to pull out of the race, a race I was mastering, and now I'm an amateur.  A hobbyist.  A sideline commentator.

But I'm also Making a Human Inside of Me.  And that's a pretty good reason to slow things down.  At least the other contenders have a fighting chance now.