Thursday, October 23, 2014

The breastfeeding post....while training for a marathon

I am currently breastfeeding Harper. She has been exclusively breastfed the entire time. She is almost 7 months old.

No one told me how hard it was going to be.Well, maybe they did, but I guess I didn't want to hear it. I mean I read blogs about running, breastfeeding and training for races so I thought if they can do it I can.

WOW! It is work. I assumed that I would have a great supply and I guess looking back I should have taken fenugreek earlier, pumped a little differently and started earlier. I started around 3 weeks. I also didn't have a good pump until 2.5 months. That helped a ton. I was using a medela swing that was handed down to me and it didn't work well at all.

Currently I take 2  5.5oz. bottles to daycare and since I am lucky to usually be able to go over there on my lunch break and nurse her. They have a nice breastfeeding room.  Daycare uses 1-2 a day plus a jar of purees.

We give her a 6oz. bottle at night. My production dips in the evening and I just want to make sure she gets enough. My husband usually feed her. She really does seem to sleep better too on a full tummy. When I pump that night session I have lots and sometimes not....I like knowing she gets the same amount every night.

So everyday I need to pump around 12oz. or more to keep up on bottles. I usually pump 12-16oz. a day. That's pumping in the morning before I leave for work at 6AM  if Harper ate earlier otherwise I nurse her. I usually feed her around 4am.

9AM and 3 PM at work and usually around 8:30PM after she has gone to bed.

This seems to work for me.

I feel such pressure to have this huge freezer stash as well. I started freezing when I was on maternity leave. I just pumped one or two extra times in between  nursing. I still am freezing but maybe a bag every five days or so.

I have about 100 4oz. frozen bags so enough. I know other women have a ton more, but again this is what I have.

At times my production dipped and I was so scared I was not going to continue. I feel such pressure to "go a year". I am almost to 7 months and am so happy I just try to get through each month. It is getting easier and becoming a habit.

Pumping at work is actually going really well. I bought a wall sticker at Lowe's and that covers my window door and then I close the blinds. It's very private and my secretary is awesome and lets me know if anyone stopped by. I was nervous about being behind closed doors so long, but it is working out well. I am glad I have such a supportive team and co-workers.

The only stressful part is when I have a meeting or need to be out of the building at a conference or something, but I just call and see if they have a room that I can  pump in or I don't go. I pump early or late depending.

Another stressful part for me was coming home after work with Harper around 4:00pm and unloading the car, cleaning all the empty bottles transferring all the pumped milk into the bottles. My husband doesn't get home most evenings until 8:00pm so that time has been challenging, but is getting much better and I am so enjoying spending quality time with Harper.

Onto running....

I have run several marathons with a lifetime PR of 3:19. For this training cycle I have been running Wednesday mornings, a four mile progressive run.  Thursday a three mile easy run. Long runs on Saturdays, alternating Saturdays between trail and road. 19 miles was my longest run.  I will have put in a 10 week cycle. Not great. I have a hip injury so this is what my body can handle. I am masking the pain with Advil on my runs. I hope to run a 4 hour marathon.

When I get back from my long runs I immediately pump or feed her if needed. She has never minded my sweaty boobs! I also have not had any issues with running and my production. I dip in the evenings and when my first period came back.

Would I have ever registered for a marathon 7 months postpartum? Probably not knowing what I now know.

- I thought for sure we would all be sleeping through the night by now.
- I miss out on Saturday morning sleep.
- I miss out on a pumping session for my freezer stash.
+ I have lost quite a bit of weight  and am almost back to my pre baby weight.
+ I have enjoyed my girl time on these early morning runs.
+ I have enjoyed the peace and quiet and ME time.

 If the marathon wasn't NYC then I wouldn't have, but in the end I think it will all be worth it.

Not sure where to insert this but, I will say even though she doesn't sleep through the night I love the precious night feeding time. It is awesome.

6 Month Photo Shoot