Miles for Midwives: Training for a 5K Run

This post is written by Emily, our intern here at Massage Williamsburg.  Emily and Rachel originally met at an ALACE/toLabor doula training last July, and Emily has since begun school at Swedish Institute in Massage Therapy. Although I’ve long enjoyed yoga, stretching, walking everywhere, and dancing, I’ve never been into hard-core endurance activities.  I have a lot of admiration for people who commit amazing (at least to me!) physical feats like racing marathons, climbing mountains, or even completing triathlons, but I wrote such things off as things beyond my interest and capabilities.  Two years ago I started a running program and quit as soon as I completed my first 20 minute run.  I had hated every minute of learning how to run, and enough was enough.

But then I started massage school, and it seemed like everyone around me was a committed runner, or had aspirations to be a personal trainer, or attended kettle-bell bootcamp, and I started to wonder what I was missing out on.  It seemed like my classmates weren’t just doing these activities to tick off the exercise box on their to-do lists, but because they actually enjoyed what they were doing.

This summer I started working in a chiropractic office that caters to many world-class athletes, particularly runners.  And the more I heard people talk about how much they enjoyed running, the more I wanted in on it.

That running program I started two years ago floated back up to the front of my thoughts, and I played with the idea for a few weeks, until I got an email from Choices in Childbirth on Monday about the upcoming Miles For Midwives NYC 5K race on Saturday, October 2 in Prospect Park.  Last year I walked in this fun-run race/walk, and raised a little bit of money to support the New York chapter of the American College of Nurse Midwives.  When I looked at the calendar for this year’s race and saw that it was nine weeks away - exactly the length of the training program I had started once before, I immediately decided that this is the time to re-commit to running a 5K.

So now I’m in training, which is probably one of the weirdest things I’ve ever said about myself.  I created a chart that I’m using to check off each of the runs (nothing motivates me more than a checkbox or a gold star!), and I‘ve dug out an old watch with a second hand to track my intervals.  After two more years of yoga, and two semester’s worth of classes on muscles and human anatomy, I find that I’m approaching running in a completely different way than the last time I did this program.  I’m more concerned with exploring to find my best stride and less concerned with how fast I’m going, for example.  Right now in the early part, I’m really enjoying myself, and looking forward to the coming weeks when running intervals get longer and the walking gets shorter.

If you’re interested in being part of the Miles for Midwives 5K race, you can register online at  Never run before?  You have just enough time to train!  You can follow the program I’m doing at, or use Robert Ullrey’s “Podcasts for Running” so you don’t have to keep track of any of the timing yourself.  (Be warned:  Ullrey has timed this out really well, but the music is really cheesy trance-dance stuff.  It can be motivating for some people, but if you are picky or easily irritated by such music, steer clear of this option!)  If you aren’t interested in running a 5K, but you ARE interested in meeting other birth-friendly people in Brooklyn and supporting Choices in Childbirth and the NY Chapter of ACNM, come out and walk with us or even cheer on the runners on October 2.  All participants and the first 100 onlookers get fantastic goody bags, and it’s one of the most laid back “sporting events” I can personally imagine!  Hope to see you there.