Many pregnant women do like to keep up with exercise while expecting, but it’s doubtful that many would think about doing an 800m race. However, a five-time U.S. national champion did just that and ran it in just over two minutes – all while she was 34-weeks pregnant. Olympian Alysia Montano may have finished last in the race yesterday at the Hornet Stadium in Sacramento, California, but she said she enjoyed it and felt ‘really good’.
The 28-year-old runner, who received a standing ovation after completing the race in 2 minutes, 32.13 seconds, said: ‘I’ve been running throughout my pregnancy and I felt really, really good during the whole process.’
Her finishing time was 35 seconds slower than her personal best of1:57.34, which she smashed back in 2010 in a race in Monaco, but is still a time many recreational runners wouldn’t be able to achieve.
Nicknamed the flying flower thanks to always racing with one in her hair, she joked her biggest fear was being lapped in USATF Outdoor Championships race.
‘I just didn’t want to get lapped and be the first person to get lapped in the 800,’ said Montano.
The 28-year-old is expecting her first baby with her husband Louis, who she married in 2011.
Doctors gave Montano the OK to take part in the race and she hopes it dispels misconceptions over exercise and pregnancy.
‘That took away any fear of what the outside world might think about a woman running during her pregnancy,’ Montano said of getting her doctor’s approval.
Montano has been training and competing since she was a child and was glad to find there was no reason why she shouldn’t continue while expecting.
‘What I found out mostly was that exercising during pregnancy is actually much better for the mom and the baby…I did all the things I normally do…I just happened to be pregnant. This is my normal this year,’ she said.