Monday, September 9, 2013

30K of North Amsterdam

For the First time I stand on the start of the 30 km of North Amsterdam. This time not alone but with a little heart beat in my belly.

How do you run a race knowing that?

Running races while pregnant is considerably different than running when you’re not pregnant.  It can be more challenging in some ways and more enjoyable in others. Here’s how I’ve found it is different:

Mindset:The first thing to recognize is that it is NOT a RACE. It’s important to set aside all the competitive instincts that make me want to run faster to beat a PR or another person. I didn't cancel any race since I knew I was pregnant just for the camaraderie and fun of running, it feels good to run with others. It’s important to let go of expectations when running while pregnant and just enjoy the moment: the scenery, the runners around you, the spectators. It can be a lot of fun and a break from competitive running, where my focus is mainly on the clock and my pace and the people I want to beat.

How did it go?
My plan is to run with my running friend @ChristineTanguy whom I have been training with the last few months in preparation for Berlin Marathon. Few days before I learned that @RwShoe and @RunningRonald were also going to run the race. Rene wanted to run close to marathon tempo and Ronald last minute decided to run at 5'/km in training for Eindhoven marathon, which I found it a good pace for me.
The start and finish are located on a track , it reminded me a little bit of Amsterdam Marathon where the start and finish are also on the track of the Olympic stadium. After a warm up run, Ronald, Christine and I found each other at the start. At 11 am we took off the 3 of us for a nice 30 km run.

Not even 100 meters after the start, I was hit by dehydration, I see Ronald running with a bottle of water in his hand so I ask him if I can have a sip. Few meters further, again I am thirsty!! I spend the whole weekend drinking water how can I be so thirsty now?

Having Ronald around is like having a personal pacer around. He took good care of us! He gave us water when needed, a sponge to keep us cool since the weather was getting warmer and warmer and being sure we stayed on the pace wanted since Christine and I kept going faster and faster while enjoying the beautiful scenery and having a pleasant time.
Since Ronald made sure that the pace is consistent few more people joined us. Among them Jantine a girl training for NewYork Marathon. We had a nice chat and time flew by.
Happy 5 :)
Christine, Ronald, Jantine, Me (Running For 2)
Just before reaching the 20 km point I realized that Christine is not around me. Ronald stopped to check on her, her goal was actually to run at 5'15/km so she decided to step a little back from the 5' tempo, while I kept running with Jantine.
Ronald joined us back, refilled the water bottle and knowing that there is only 9 km I felt like running a little faster since everything felt great. Ronald agreed and suggested to catch up to the pacer of the 5'/km who was 500 m in front of us

We left Jantine and I cruised with Ronald the last 9 km at a faster pace and it was just an amazing feeling to pass people even though that was not our goal at all! Still chatting with Ronald and feeling comfortable at the faster pace.  Runners were impressed where we came up with this energy! On the way to the finish we bumped into @RunningGerard who finished with an amazing PR by improving his time by 11 min, Congrats!
The last 100 meters before the finish I tell Ronald : Kleine sprintje? We sprinted to the finish line to finish with a nice time of 2:27:44. Not bad for a 14 weeks pregnant lady!!
RR with the lady running for 2 ;-)
Also just before the finish I see my boys who came to cheer up for me and my little one all enthusiastic I hear him screaming MAMA!!So cuuute!! I love him so much!!
After the finish we waited for the rest to cross the finish line then enjoyed a drink with Ronald to end this beautiful race day!

Races aren’t “off limits” for pregnant women! You can run races while you are pregnant if you’re smart about it and recognize that pregnancy is no time to set PR’s or be a hero. If you choose to run races during pregnancy, use it as a time to get back to the pure enjoyment of running. It can really be fun!

Everything was very well organized, from shower to a beautiful sport hall and most of all the course was just great!!! THANK YOU!! If you haven't yet run the 30k of North Amsterdam set him on your planning for 2014!

Christine, Ronald, Gerard, ME & My little boy!


  1. Great race report and one thing is for sure, you DID enjoy the whole 30KM. So funny how you said hallo to everybody, even the cows, sheeps and goats :) It was fun running the the four of you :)))

  2. Hoi Nesrine, ik hoop dat alle zwangere vrouwen dit lezen en daardoor besluiten toch door te gaan met sporten terwijl ze zwanger zijn. Je verhaal motiveert!! Want zoals je beschrijft, het kan best en er is geen reden om te stoppen met sporten als je je goed voelt! Keep on going!

  3. Nice report this is about a nice race as well; have been there a few times as well.
    And sure, it's good to run non competitive also, and thus enjoying all about the run.
    Nicely done, and congratz on being pregnant!

  4. Nice report this is about a nice race as well; have been there a few times as well.
    And sure, it's good to run non competitive also, and thus enjoying all about the run.
    Nicely done, and congratz on being pregnant!