Manic Monday Training Recap – 09/24/18

Manic Monday

Postpartum Recovery – Week of 09/17/18 – 09/23/18

Monday 09/17/18: Rest
I had hoped to run when Ben got home, but we ended up having dinner with my in-laws instead. They’re about to head off on a month-long trip to Italy, so it was nice to spend some time with them.

Tuesday 09/18/18: 75 minute postnatal yoga class
Once again, Vera was a rock star and let me get most of a workout in without fussing.

Wednesday 09/19/18: 5k run/walk
I was able to sneak in a quick 5k after Ben got home from work. I knew I had a limited amount of time because he wanted to go visit his Grammie, so I picked up the pace a bit from what I’ve been doing. It felt challenging but oh so good to push it a little.

Thursday 09/20/18: Rest
We had a rough night with Vera (thank you, three month growth spurt), and it was all I could do to get through the day.

Friday 09/21/18: Rest
Another rough night = another rest day

Saturday 09/22/18: 5k run/walk
Using 2:1 intervals, this was my fastest post-baby 5k yet. Running more than a minute at a time feels challenging, but I love it!

Sunday 09/23/18: Rest
Vera has really been giving us a run for our money, and after yet another rough night, I couldn’t force myself to do anything other than necessary tasks.

Unfortunately this week didn’t really go the way I wanted it to, but that’s life with an infant. I’m just grateful for what I was able to do.

Going forward in my postpartum fitness journey, I really want to make sure that I’m balancing cardio, strength, and mobility. I once worked with a trainer who said that fitness is like a stool, and cardio, strength, and mobility are the three legs. If you focus on any one area more than the others, you don’t have a very good seat. My intention is to do postpartum core work every day, and a short, focused strength workout each day that I’m not running. And of course, stretching and rolling regularly. But as I said above, life with an infant is challenging and unpredictable, so we’ll see how it goes.

Friday Free-For-All – 09/21/18

Friday Free-For-All

The truck is once again in the shop. The brakes were shot, so Ben and his dad started the job, only to find out that the parts they bought were wrong. It’s been over a week now that the truck has been out of commission, so we’ve been borrowing a car from my in-laws when possible. I’m carless today, which is proving to be challenging because…

Vera is going through a three-month growth spurt and I am in ROUGH shape. She’s been super cranky while she’s awake, eating every 1.5 hours, and waking a lot more often during the night. My typically calm, easy-going baby is basically just screaming the entire time she’s awake. I’m just trying to remember that this is temporary, and will pass. But damn am I tired. And being trapped in the house is making it harder to deal.

Thank goodness for the automated Rock ‘n’ Play my Aunt Beth gifted us. It has a vibrate mode that seems to mimic the motion of a carseat, which helps Vera fall asleep and stay asleep longer. She’s been taking at least one big long nap during the day after being so fussy at night. I’m planning to move it into our bedroom tonight and see if it will help us all sleep better.

Any tips for dealing with a sad, fussy baby?

Manic Monday Training Recap – 09/17/18

Manic Monday

Postpartum Recovery – Week of 09/10/18 – 09/16/18

Monday 09/10/18: Rest
I decided to take a full rest day to give my knees a chance to feel better.

Tuesday 09/11/18: 75 minute postnatal yoga
Vera and I hit up a lovely postnatal yoga class together. She was a champ and I got most of a workout in.

Wednesday 09/12/18: Rest
I wanted to give my knees another day to rest up after the pain I experienced this weekend, so I took a full rest day.

Thursday 09/13/18: 2.5 mile stroller walk
After Ben got home from work, we went for a family walk on the rail trail. It was a lovely evening, and felt great.

Friday 09/14/18: TIU Lift and Tone Booty Workout + 1.5 mile stroller walk
I kind of hate the TIU Girls, but I have to admit that their workouts are short and effective. In the afternoon, Vera and I took a walk on the rail trail and met up at the playground with my friend Nikki and her son Kalamack.

Saturday 09/15/18: 3.15 mile run/walk
I switched to 1:1 run/walk intervals today, and am happy to report zero knee pain and one happy runner!

Sunday 09/16/18: Rest
I was tired and sore after two days of decent workouts, so I took another rest day. Ben and I went to the Grand Point North music festival and left Vera with her grandparents for the firs time. It was hard, but wonderful.

I’m proud of myself for listening to my body and taking the rest I needed after noticing knee pain, rather than trying to push it. My body simply isn’t as fit as it used to be, and I need to give it time. I’m feeling pretty much 100% today other than a bit of DOMS, so I hope to go for a run/walk when Ben gets home from work tonight.

When’s the last time you went to a concert?

Friday Free-For-All – 09/14/18

Friday Free-For-All

Our piano is here! You may remember a while back, I mentioned that we would be acquiring my Great Grammy Katherine’s piano. Well, it’s finally here! It needs some cleaning and a tuning, but we are very happy to have it. I’ve always wanted to learn to play, and Ben took lessons as a kid, so it will be lots of fun to play with. And who knows, maybe Vera will want to learn to play someday!

I ordered some new nursing clothes from Latched MamaAs I revealed in Wednesday’s post, I’m really struggling to dress myself in this postpartum, breastfeeding phase. Most of my current wardrobe either doesn’t fit, or isn’t nursing friendly. So far I’m really happy with what I got, including two dresses with POCKETS! WOO!

The infant yoga class I signed myself and Vera up for got switched up. The class at the location closer to us didn’t have enough enrollment, so we’ll now have to go to the further away location. I’m bummed, but glad we still have an option. And at least we can still do postnatal yoga at the closer location.

My knees are feeling better after some rest. I haven’t run at all this week, and have generally been taking it easy. I’m very happy my knees are feeling better, and I’m planning to try a walk/run tonight when Ben gets home. Fingers crossed the knee pain doesn’t return!

Do you play piano? Did you do infant yoga with your kid(s)?

Postpartum Rant: How the Hell Do I Dress My Postpartum Body?!

When a woman gets pregnant, she has a reasonable understanding that her body will be different post-baby. Stretch marks, saggy skin, and weight gain are all part of the bargain. While I am endlessly grateful and amazed by what my body has done in growing a tiny human, and providing nourishing breast milk to help her continue to grow, I definitely wasn’t prepared for the specific challenge of trying to dress my postpartum body.

For the first few weeks, it wasn’t really a problem. Unless we were leaving the house or company was coming over, I rarely wore more than underwear and a bathrobe. And when I did bother to leave the house for a doctor appointment or the like, comfort was paramount. I usually wore a stretchy skirt and a nursing tank. I didn’t even bother with a bra most of the time. But now that I’m ready to be out and about more, I’m starting to actually get dressed every day, which is proving to be kind of hard.

First things first, I’d say at least 50% of my wardrobe simply doesn’t fit. I’m about eight pounds above pre-baby weight, which, honestly, isn’t that much. In the grand scheme of things I’m not worried about that weight. It will come off in time. But having so much of my wardrobe out of commission is tough.

Of the 50% that does still fit, about 20% of it is incredibly unflattering because my body is shaped totally differently now. I have a “mum tum,” a pouch of loose skin on my lower belly. I have extra inches all over. Eventually, I will likely be able to wear these clothes again, but they’re out for now.

So let’s say 30% of my wardrobe both fits and looks decent enough that I don’t want to cry when I put it on; only a handful of tops are nursing friendly. Because I am exclusively breastfeeding Vera until she’s at least 5-6 months old, and will continue to nurse (hopefully) through her first year, I need clothes that I can comfortably breastfeed in. I have already spent a couple hundred dollars on nursing tops, dresses, and bras. I have enough that I can go an entire week without repeating, but there’s not a whole lot of variety.

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Pre-pregnancy shorts that are definitely too small, unflattering nursing tank

Also, my breasts are a lot bigger because of breastfeeding, so zero of my sports bras fit. Now that I’m trying to get back to running, this is a problem. I can just barely squeeze into one of them, but the others simply won’t do. I’m reluctant to buy larger bras that I won’t wear long term, but I’m gonna have to if I don’t want to have to do laundry every other day, or irreparably stretch out my existing bras and have to replace them eventually anyway.

I’m trying to just suck it up and buy clothes that fit me right now rather than feeling bad about what I have, but that’s expensive. Now that Ben and I are on a single income, I can’t exactly run out and buy a whole new wardrobe. I’m pretty much focused on items that are nursing-friendly, but it can be hard to find inexpensive, well-made, flattering nursing clothes. Much of what’s available is only available online, so it’s a gamble ordering things that may or may not work, and a lot of specialty breast feeding-friendly companies are kind of expensive.

Latched Mama Ruffle Sleeve Nursing Tee

$28 – Cute, but how will it look on me?

I know this is totally a first-world problem, but it feels really big and important to me. Dealing with postpartum body image is hard enough without having to buy a whole new wardrobe just to feel like I don’t look terrible.

Mamas, how did you deal with your wardrobe during the postpartum period? Did you buy a whole bunch of new clothes? What were your go-tos for breastfeeding tops?

 

Manic Monday Training Recap – 09/10/18

Manic Monday

Postpartum Recovery: Week of 09/03/18 – 09/09/18

Monday 09/03/18: 3 mile walk/run
This was another 3:1 walk/run outing, and despite my stomach being a little dodgy due to running too close to breakfast, it felt great!

Tuesday 09/04/18: Postnatal Core
Vera slept through the time we needed to leave for yoga class, so I did a quick postnatal core workout at home while she was napping.

Wednesday 09/05/18: Postnatal Core & Postnatal Full Body Workout
It was too hot to leave the house, so I did some workouts I found on YouTube: two postnatal core workouts (about 20 minutes total) and about 75% of a full body workout (Vera woke up from her nap and I didn’t get to finish).

Thursday 09/06/18: Rest
Vera had a doctor appointment, and after her shots she was VERY sad and sleepy, so we just did lots of snuggling.

Friday 09/07/18: Rest
Between Vera being extra sleepy and fussy from her shots, and a last-minute visit from my parents, I wasn’t able to get a workout in.

Saturday 09/08/18: 5k walk/run
My first walk/run with 2:1 intervals. I had my fastest post-baby 5k and my fastest post-baby mile!

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Before baby, I would have been ashamed of this “slow” pace. I probably would have beat myself up over it. But guess what? This was my fastest after-baby 5k, with my fastest after-baby mile. 2:1 walk/run intervals. • It’s so easy to worry that I’ll never hit my before-baby paces again, but here’s the thing: I truly believe that my strongest, fastest running days are AHEAD of me, not behind. After all, I was only a runner for six years before baby. I have the rest of my life to see what my after-baby body can do! • #runnergirl #vtrunner #motherrunner #womensrunningcommunity #postpartumfitness #postpartumjourney #returntorunning #instarunners #momswhorun #runnermom #nineweekspostpartum #lvrt #hokaahari2

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Sunday 09/09/18: 3 mile walk/run
Unfortunately, some knee pain surface during this run. Both knees. Which is new and different for me. I tried really hard to just focus on using good form and taking it nice and slow, but the soreness continued even after I was done. Boo.

So. Knee pain. I’m not sure if it’s due to the new shoes, lingering hormonal weirdness post-pregnancy, or maybe just irritation because I’m heavier than usual. Whatever the cause, I plan to take a few days off from my new walk/run schedule and focus on mobility and strength. Time to bust out the foam roller!

Any tips for dealing with knee pain?

My First Week As a Stay At Home Mom

I knew that being a stay at home mom would be challenging. Everything I’d read in magazines and online, every friend or acquaintance I’d talked to, indicated that being a full time mom was no walk in the park. As with so many things, however, knowing a thing and understanding a thing are very different.

My first seven weeks as a mom were a walk in the park compared to what many women go through. I had a husband who was able to be home with me, and we could divide and conquer. If I was fed up or having a tough day, it was no trouble to just hand Vera off to Ben and escape for an hour or an afternoon. If I really needed to use the bathroom or make a snack, there was another pair of hands to help out.

Now, though, it’s all me. From the time Ben leaves at 6:45 am until he arrives home around 4 pm, I’m on Vera duty. And it’s HARD. Don’t get me wrong; I love my daughter with my entire being. And I CHOSE this. I chose it before I knew what I was up against and I continue to choose every day now that I know what it really means. And I’m SO lucky and SO grateful that this is a possibility for our family. But that doesn’t change the fact that catering to the needs of a tiny person is challenging.

I won’t lie, I had a couple of tough days last week. It was super hot Tuesday and Wednesday, so I was reluctant to take Vera out in the stroller; folks, I didn’t leave the house at all for two days. Cabin fever is REAL. I’m an extroverted introvert, meaning I require equal parts quiet down time and socialization, but being home all day with an infant is the worst of both worlds; I’m neither alone nor getting adult socialization.

So then why not get out of the house and go places? Well, we love country living, but that presents its own set of challenges. Living an hour away from the closest city means that getting us out the door takes TONS of work. I have to time feeding just right so that she’ll sleep in the car. I have to make sure that I have the diaper bag stocked, my water bottle, snacks for me, the Boppy, and all the other attendant crap. And no matter how well-behaved your infant is, being outside of your house for long periods of time is taxing. Finding a comfortable place to breastfeed is hard. Being in a store with a crying baby is hard. Lugging the stroller in and out of the trunk at every stop is hard.

In order to stave off the cabin fever and keep myself sane, I’m planning to seek out at least one thing per day that Vera and I can do together outside the house. I’ve signed us up for an Infant Yoga and Massage class, plus I have my weekly postnatal yoga class. There’s story time at the library once a week, and I’m sure I can come up with a few other things. I’ve learned that I NEED to get out of the house every day, even if it’s just a stroll around the yard.

Aside from extreme cabin fever, I’m still delighted with my decision not to return to work. Vera is AWESOME. I don’t know how we got so lucky. Other than occasional gassy-ness she’s the happiest, calmest baby. Even at her most upset, she’s not even that loud. Sure, I wish I were getting more sleep, but her smiles and coos make everything worth it. I just remind myself that these challenging newborn days are temporary, and will give way to challenging baby days, which will give way to challenging toddler days, and so on until I have an adult on my hands (woah!). I’m determined to enjoy each phase as much as possible.

Stay at home parent friends, what are your favorite “stay sane” activities?