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Marathon Training with an Infant (Week 1 Recap)

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Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Marathon Training with an Infant (Week 1 Recap)

Week 1 of the official training program is in the books. I wanted to start off with low expectations, so I already skipped a workout. (Relax, Jack! I added a new one at the end.) So. Will (aka husband/FORMER training buddy) pulled a hammy at JAG School, so he is under doctor's orders not to "go out and run 5 miles or anything." First day of training? A 5 miler. Luckily, I have another training buddy who is at least equally as cute . . .

My sole running buddy (10 weeks old). I like him.

(Will is doing physical therapy now, so hopefully he can start joining me and little Will on runs within the next couple weeks. At a minimum, he got one of those big foam rollers for free at physical therapy. Holla.)

Anyway, training with an infant has its own set of challenges. I took to the fitness blogs for tips before we ventured out with our beloved companion, Robert (more commonly known as BOB Stroller), so I thought I'd share our routine. Maybe it will be helpful to other running mamas out there.

Our Routine:

(1) Nurse first and double down. This is going to be pretty intuitive for the newly nursing mom. Feeding the baby before a run kills two birds with one stone. You won't have painful, full breasts during your run and your babe won't go hungry or want food right after your workout when you are all sweaty and gross. Also, double down on the sports bras if your chesty is still kind of sensitive. Once your supply regulates, you probably won't feel the need to do this.

(2) Head for the door. When we're home, I just change into my workout clothes while he's napping. I'm still doing the EASY routine, so I'll wait until he wakes up (or wake him up) and nurse him. (I just pull everything right on up. No special nursing sports bras or anything.) When we finish, I stick him right in the infant car seat, into the stroller, and get everything ready.

(3) RUN. Duh. But I've actually found that running with the BOB is more difficult than I initially thought. It's hard to keep a good running form when you are pushing a heavy stroller with one hand, especially against the wind. I have a tendency to lean back, so I really have to focus on leaning forward into the stroller a little.

(4) Cool down = nap time. At least for us, as soon as the stroller stops, baby Will's eyes shoot open. If I want any sort of cool down, I have to keep walking around our culdesac until I'm ready to pull him out of the stroller and go back into mom-mode. If you have one of those super-sweet babies that will, like, sit still for any period of time, then you can disregard this advice.

Some Other Thoughts:

Timing. I like to run in the late afternoon and time it so that Will gets home just as I need to shower. As we head into summer, I will probably need to re-think this and go out first thing in the morning. I am still lobbying Will for a treadmill so I can just keep an eye on Will on the baby monitor.

Lactic Acid. I've read that the lactic acid from exercise can change the taste of breast milk and babies will refuse to eat. This has never been a problem for us.

Milk Supply. No issues at all, but I've been refueling with plenty of water and ice cream.

Weight Loss. My weight loss has plateaued and I still have about 7 pounds (of the 43+ gained during pregnancy) clinging to me that have been sticking around the past few weeks. I'm interested to see if running gets rid of them or if I'll actually have to wait until baby Will weans and diet (i.e., stop eating ice cream for a few days).

Leave me a comment if you have any other tips!

Week 1 Recap:

So here is Phase I of the program, the first 4 weeks: 

And here is what was actually accomplished: 


5 miles, 55:07.90, 11:02/mile (with BOB)


3 miles, 32:15.24, 10:45/mile (with BOB)


5 miles, 56:29.97, 11:18/mile (with BOB)


3 miles, 29:05.78, 9:42/mile (with BOB)


6 miles, my stinking watch ate my run, but it was completed in less than 1 hour. Last mile was sub 9-minutes! (no BOB)


3.1 miles, 25:25, 8:12/mile (no BOB)

Total: 25 miles

Overall, it was a good week. I'm starting to feel like I have my pre-baby legs back. (The entire abdomen area, however, is another story.)

Crazy duckfaced post-run mirror selfie complete with Jesus photobomb.
One week down, 21 to go!

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At April 29, 2014 at 10:50 AM , Blogger Janine @ This Little Piggy Stayed Home said...

I don't know if this is true or not...old wives tale or whatnot...but I've heard that weight loss peaks after 4 months of breastfeeding! So maybe those last few pounds are just holding out until the last possible second ;) Either way you look awesome and are so inspiring and I can't wait to start running again after this baby exits my body.

At April 29, 2014 at 11:23 AM , Blogger Hannah Gokie said...

Your tips are super helpful - and you look great! Are you having any back pain from pushing the stroller? I find that whenever I run weird for whatever reason (holding a water bottle, etc.) my back goes crazy so I'm nervous about that with a baby & stroller.

At April 29, 2014 at 3:44 PM , Blogger Theresa Breslin said...

I will let you know in a couple months whether that's true! I don't want to give up my daily dose of ice cream. Also - The baby is artfully covering my pregnancy pooch. I mean that's kind of what they're for, too, right?

At April 29, 2014 at 3:47 PM , Blogger Theresa Breslin said...

Hmmm, no real back pain, but my back is constantly sore. I think my upper back/shoulders are sore from pushing the stroller. You're always keeping one arm out in front of you and my body is definitely not used to it still, even after over a month of BOB running. I attribute the lower back soreness to constantly leaning over to change diapers, pick up Will, bathe him, etc., but who knows for sure!

At May 5, 2014 at 3:34 PM , Blogger Sarah said...

Love the Jesus photo bomb haha I'm not breast feeding and I haven't had a baby and I don't have to push a stroller but I still hate running. Do you recommend that I quit being a lazy fat ass and suck it up anyways or should I just stick to my other forms of cardio? Soccer and cycling? I think the latter and my knees agree. I'm proud of you! You rock!

At May 14, 2014 at 5:24 PM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is going to sound crazy but I actually shaved 2 minutes off my mile after having my first son. You would be surprised how much stronger your body gets after going through labor! Well, you are awesome for being a running momma; it makes me happy to see other running mommas :)

At May 14, 2014 at 9:37 PM , Blogger Colleen said...

I have a question...when did you start running after he was born? My 6th baby is 6 weeks old today, and I just started running again. The first run was 2 miles and the next two runs were 3 miles each. I am so sore!


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