Back to It

When I found out I was pregnant and due early November, I realized I would be in my postpartum period over all the holiday goodness. Thankfully, Isla’s birthday was close enough to the holidays that it’s still acceptable to rock stretchy maternity jeans.

I told myself that I wouldn’t start worrying about trying to lose baby weight until after the holidays and until Isla had established a good eating schedule. Since this is the last maternity leave that I’ll ever get, I also promised myself that I wouldn’t do anything but cuddle my new baby for two weeks after she was born. Done and done. For two weeks, I didn’t lift a finger. It was amazing.

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Even though I didn’t really contribute to any household chores during that time, I still couldn’t sit still. The weather has been wonderful for this time of year here in Wisconsin, so we managed a few family walks those first few weeks. Once the weather got cooler, I was on my own. The cool temps felt so refreshing after being inside all day. For the first few weeks I kept the mileage to about two miles or thirty minutes of fast walking. At about four weeks postpartum, I was feeling pretty good and started to add some running in there. Talk about humbling. I stayed pretty active my whole pregnancy, so for that reason I wasn’t expecting it to be so difficult. My legs itched like crazy and my lungs hated me. Not to mention my lower abdominal strength being completely gone. I have some work ahead of me.

I’ve been getting out as often as I can and running the treadmill during nap time and it is getting a little easier than that first time a few weeks ago.

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On Sunday, my sister and I laced up our running shoes and headed out for a run by my mom’s house. It was my first “real” run. We had a distance goal and got it done! We set out to run 3 miles and it felt really good. We ran around Humbolt Park…

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and by the time we got back to my mom’s we were at 2.3 miles. So we ran around a few blocks and during that last stretch of distance, I was running close enough to my old pace again that I was hopeful it won’t be much longer to be back to where I was.

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And I celebrated my first glorious postpartum run with grandma’s 75th birthday cake…

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My first “race” will be a 5k in January. I’m excited to see how I do and where I am as far as speed goes by then. Now that I’ve added cardio back into my life, I’m looking forward to take a barre class next week! My sister and I are doing the last blast of 2015 (75 minute cardio class), but I’m hoping to sneak in a regular barre class before then.

How do you celebrate a really great run?

Any advice on returning back to running after pregnancy or an injury?

What’s on your schedule as far as races go in 2016?

Merry Christmas from my family to yours!

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The Past 6 Weeks…

We are alive! In case you were worried 😉

Life with a brand new baby & a very active 3 year old tends to be highly exhausting, but I now feel like we are on the upswing and settling into our new life.

Sleep. So apparently we got lucky with Madelyn who was sleeping through the night at 6 weeks old. At Isla’s one month appointment, her pediatrician asked if I had any concerns. I said, “She’s still waking up every hour and a half to 2 hours to eat.” He informed me that it was completely normal and when I told him about Madelyn’s sleeping patterns as a newborn, he told me to consider myself lucky. Her sleeping has definitely gotten better since the first two weeks of her life. We used to have staring contests in the middle of the night during which I would sit and ask her why she wasn’t sleeping. Now, I put her to sleep around 7:30pm, feed her again around 10, last night she slept until 3:45am, I fed her and then she slept until 7am. I’ve noticed that my diet also affects her sleep (gassiness). I’ve pretty much cut out dairy and last week, while I was indulging in Christmas cookies, her sleep was really off as well. When I decided to spend one day eating “clean” she actually slept better, waking up only once. If that’s not motivation to eat well, I don’t know what is.

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Madelyn.  Overall, big sister is very happy to have Isla in her life. Whenever Isla cries, Madelyn tells her that it’s going to be okay and that mommy’s here. I love it when she calls Isla sweetie or honey. Within in the past few weeks, she has been acting a little naughty when she sees me feeding Isla. I don’t know if she’s jealous or if she’s bored because I’m not entertaining her at that moment. Probably a little bit of both. We’ve been making sure that if one of us is with Isla, the other parent is spending time with Madelyn. For the first 6 weeks after Isla was born, we sent Madelyn to daycare. I didn’t want to interrupt her life too much, she likes going there and I was still adjusting to being up during the night and resting when Isla slept. Now she’s home with me until the rest of my maternity leave and we’ve been able to get some fun stuff done this week-like gingerbread houses and Santa visits.

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Life. Life with two littles changes in every aspect possible. I have yet to go out in public with just the two of them by myself. I’m still getting used to having one in the car seat carrier again. I did run into the mall the other night after the three of us left my mom’s, but we were in and out of one store…10 minutes tops so I don’t really count that. Some days, I feel really onto of things and that I’ve got the hang of this, and then there are the days when I don’t get out of my pajamas until after noon. Those are the days when I have to look around and realize everyone’s alive and happy and that’s all that matters today. A new baby can also put stress on a marriage. Larry helps out a lot (Thanks babe!!), but with his schedule I can’t help but sometimes feel like a single parent and that I’m doing a lot of the hard stuff by myself. I get that right now this is my “job”, but soon I will be going back to work as well and probably still getting up in the middle of the night to feed this little milk monster. It’s hard not to feel a little resentment when you’re up all night and your spouse gets to sleep 4+ hours uninterrupted. I just keep reminding myself that this is just a phase and that “I can do hard things.” I look at Madelyn on the floor playing dress up with her dolls and then I look at Isla sleeping away on my chest and it feels like it was just yesterday that Madelyn was the little baby sleeping on me. It makes me want to cry sometimes when you realize how fast time goes.

As far as anymore babies go, we both are in agreement that Isla is the last chapter in our baby book. I love my kids to the end of the Earth and back, but I’m done. As much as I enjoy being pregnant, this last labor pretty much sealed the deal that I don’t want to do it again. We are perfectly happy with our two little girls and are looking forward to what the years ahead of us will bring.

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