Friday, February 28, 2014

The Ultimate Goal

After losing 160lbs and being in the best shape of my life,  it doesn't feel so great to have gained some of that back. Though, it was for a good reason.

On New Years, while I was still pregnant. I wrote the following goals for 2014:

At the end of 2014, I would like to look back and have a happy 11 month old baby, be back at my pre-pregnancy weight of 145lbs, and be able to run a 5k in under 30 minutes.

My eating has been on track since I had the baby. I'm surprised how easily I fell back into my old pre-pregnancy healthy eating habits. I've been eating lots of spinach since I'm iron deficient. I've been eating oatmeal mixed with chia seeds and fruit for breakfast. I've been eating a lot of salads or turkey for lunch. Dinner has been ground turkey, salmon or steak with a side of vegetables. I've been allowing myself some dark chocolate but am trying to limit that more now. I'm treating myself to one glass of wine per week, and that's quickly becoming a happy ritual.

I have not had pizza or ice cream since I had the baby!

Also, yesterday, I ran for the first time. Just small intervals, but I ran, and I feel great today. I think my body is ready!

I'm being very careful to listen to my body and stop when anything in my abdominal area feels sore. That's been at 25 minutes for my past 2 workouts, so that's when I stopped. I also found this article from Runner's World, which has good advice for how to starting running again after having a baby. 

The plan for today is to do 50 push ups (on knees, I can no longer do them on my toes), some yoga poses, and to walk on the treadmill for 45 minutes at 1.0 incline and 3.3 speed. 

Saturday, February 22, 2014

A Taste of Spring

Every year when Spring comes it's the greatest feeling. Today was a tease of what is to come. It was 50 degrees and sunny. It was still cold enough to wear a hat and gloves, but I got outside - twice! 

First we bundled Harper up and went to Castle Island. 

We only walked for about 10 or 15 minutes because I was worried it was too cold for her. I wish I had brought a better hat because the hood on the snow suit was very big. I'm a very nervous new mom... She didn't seem to mind though, she slept the whole time. 

I decided to go back out when we got home because I wanted a better "workout". I took Jaxson with me. It has been a rough few weeks for the poor guy, even though he does get to go to doggy daycare three times a week.

I definitely got my heart rate up for at least 30 minutes, especially on the long hill back to our house. Jaxson won't allow me to walk slowly. It may have been a little too much too soon though, which is disappointing. 

Thursday, February 20, 2014

It feels so good!

It's been quite the adjustment getting used to taking care of the baby. A good night's sleep is a thing of past. Her eating and sleeping patterns are completely unpredictable, which the doctor says is normal at this age. She can go 4 hours between a feeding but then want to eat every hour for four hours in a row. We'll have a great night (6 hours of sleep) and then an awful night where she cries all night long. Last night was the latter, and we we concerned something was wrong. Hearing her cry for more than a few minutes stresses me out, especially when I feel like I can't fix for her what is wrong.

She cried enough last night that we were concerned enough to go to the doctor today to have her weight and diaper rash checked. She is doing great and has gained 1.4 pounds since birth! And the crying all night is because she was likely still hungry. The doctor said to just feed her more until she stops complaining.

On top of the new baby responsibilities, I'm also working on some career related stuff that had me out of the house a couple of times this week. So, right now there is no way that I could find time to go to the gym. There's getting ready and driving there on top of actual workout time. While I used to love going to the gym for the social aspect, having a treadmill is at home is great right now. Tonight I even wore my pajamas for my workout as opposed to workout clothes.

It's a far cry from the 9 mile runs I used to be capable of, but hey, I had a baby less than 3 weeks ago. I haven't had a workout comparable to this in probably almost 2 months. And guess what? It felt amazing! Tonight I actually broke a small sweat and felt my heart rate get up there. Even this, which was just walking, helps reduce stress.

Tonight was also Harper's first real bath and first time meeting big brother Jaxson up close and personal. These are the fun parts of parenting so far!

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Resuming Exercise Postpartum

When I chose an OB, I specifically looked for a practice that would support lots of exercise during pregnancy. One of the doctors in the practice ran a marathon while pregnant and my OB is a triathlete. The guidance from my doctors all along was simply to listen to my body and stop when something did not feel right or hurt.

I actually stopped most exercise when I was about 7.5 months pregnant because I was having a lot of groin pain, even just walking.

After the birth, my doctors cleared me for walking the day I left the hospital. 2-3 mile walks with the stroller I asked? The answer was yes and I was excited. Since then though, there has not been a single day conducive to a walk outside. It's either been snowing or extremely cold. So, last week we decided to buy a treadmill and it is coming today!

I went to Sports Authority because I wanted to try them out. I immediately liked the nicest model there - the FreeMotion T6.0 - because it has a wider belt and quiet motor.

Turns out it was my lucky day. They offered me the floor model for 30% off - a savings of over $600. We were fine with it being the floor model, but the next day they called and said they had a new one, but would honor the floor model price.

Little things like this give me confidence that 2014 will be a much better year than 2013!

Anyway, everything I have read about resuming exercise postpartum stresses the importance of taking it slow. This is something I am not good at! I'm writing out a plan for the first week of walking, to make sure that I don't over-do it.

Here is my plan:

  • Tuesday - 20 minutes at a pace that feels comfortable/enjoyable, just see where I'm at and enjoy my new playlist
  • Wednesday - 5 minute warm up, 20 minutes at 65% of maximum heart rate (~130), 5 minute cool down, pelvic tilts and light stretching
  • Thursday - walk outside with stroller at comfortable pace! says is supposed to be sunny and 44 degrees. We'll see if that actually comes true.
  • Friday - rest and see how my body is responding to the increased activity
  • Saturday - walk outside again since the weather looks good

Now, the challenge for me is not going to be doing these workouts. It's going to be not doing more than I have outlined here. Too much too fast will just be harmful in the long run, but it's going to be tempting since I haven't really worked out for so long and I'm craving some great workouts.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Baby Harper

Harper was born on 2/1/14 at 41 weeks and 1 day. Her birth weight was 8lbs and 1oz. She has red hair, which was a big surprise to me.

Labor and delivery went better than I imagined it would (I am a pessimist). I was very anxious leading up to the day I went to the hospital for my induction. I guess that's why you should never google medical procedures - you're bound to find the one in a million horror stories. I went to the hospital on a Thursday night and it took about 24 hours for me to go into active labor.

Once I was in active labor though, I had an amazing epidural. I felt no pain, but was able to feel my contractions so I knew when to push. The nurses were so surprised by how fast everything moved after they broke my water, especially since the initial stages of the induction took a while.  Harper arrived 8 hours after they broke my water, with 45 minutes of pushing.

Recovery has been pretty easy so far, and 2 weeks later, I'm ready to start a walking routine for the next few weeks. The hard part is feeding her every 2-3 hours, especially when she takes an hour to eat!

We're in love, but also very tired.