Woman gives birth after finishing Chicago Marathon

October 10, 2011 7:28:31 PM PDT
Amber Miller said she "felt" a little something when she crossed the finish line at Sunday's Chicago Marathon.

That something turned out the be one of several contraction's the 27-year-old-suburban Westchester woman had just hours before she gave birth to her daughter. Amber Miller said Sunday was the longest day of her life. The day started when she completed the marathon in 6 hours and 25 minutes while 38 weeks and 5 days pregnant. She usually completes the race in 3 hours and 25 minutes.

She said she got a lot of strange looks as she alternated running and walking the course with her husband. Some people even shouted at her ''baby's first marathon!'' as she ran by.

Miller said she signed up for the marathon in February before she found out that she was pregnant. She said she really had no intention of finishing the race.

"I was having a conversation with my parents the night before, Saturday night, and I was telling them I have no plans of actually finishing," Miller said. "I was kind of planning on running about half and then maybe skipping to the end and walking across finish line."

Under her husband Joe's watchful eye, the nearly 39-week-pregnant avid marathoner set an easy pace, running two miles then walking the next two, all the while ignoring contractions to complete the 26.2 mile race around 3 p.m..

"I just trusted in her judgement and trusted that the lord would see that Amber and the baby were safe," her husband said.

Just a few hours after finishing the marathon, Miller gave birth to a healthy baby girl named June at 10:29 p.m. Sunday.

Central DuPage Hospital neo-natologist Dr. Jeffrey Loughead said the baby is in excellent condition and added the biggest risk Miller faced while running was dehydration, which could have sent her into labor.

"This is obviously an extreme circumstance," Loughead said. "We don't recommend that women routinely run marathons, but obviously mom is a very experienced runner and in excellent shape."

Miller said this is the eighth marathon she has run and the third one pregnant. She ran one when she was 17 weeks pregnant with her son and also when she found out she was pregnant at 17 weeks. She does not know whether she will run any other marathons' coming up.

As of Monday, the entire Miller family -- including their newest addition -- is doing just fine.


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