Wednesday, March 16, 2011

A little advice needed...

**two posts in one day...wowzers!**

If you are a male you should probably stop reading this post right now. Not because it is inappropriate or anything. I just think you might die of boredom as this has nothing to do with the male species.

I know that baby # 2 will not be here (Lord willing) till August. So this might seem a little premature, but I wanted to go ahead and seek any advice from those mommies out there…while it’s on my mind. You see I am already thinking about doing a half marathon some time after this baby is born. Not immediately! But within the year.

And well you see I plan to nurse this baby (like Eli) as long as I can. With Eli it was definitely a learning experience. It is no secret I am a health nut. As soon as Eli popped out I was looking to Daniel and the doctor begging them to let me run/lift asap. 3 weeks of NO workout was torture for me. As soon as those 3 weeks were up I was off! I also tried to "diet" aka...not eat like I did while pregnant to get those extra lbs I had left from Eli. To sum it up, I wanted to get in shape and feel good about my body pronto.

Little did I know that this (the eating waaaay less because you burn so much while nursing and over exerting myself) would back fire. By 3 months Eli was screaming at me for more milk...I had dried up. And to say that I was devastated wouldn't even be the right word. I was one of those mom's who was going to nurse for AT LEAST a year. Daniel finally shook some sense into me, and Eli quickly became a formula fed baby by 3.5 months (after he ate up all the frozen milk I had stored).

I also want to say here that I was never one of those "over producers" like my cousin who could feed three more babies a day with (I hope you don't mind me sharing that sweet cuz!). I seemed to make just enough for my growing boy and maybe have an extra bottle a day to store.

So where does the advice come in?? I guess I am seeking advice from those mom's who do manage to nurse for 9+ months and do get back in shape and run! I had a mom at church tell me the other day the weight does come off, it just might take 6 months. I am very impatient but willing to do what it takes to be able to nurse this baby as long as I can not just for health reasons, but for $$ reasons too!!!

So fire at me were you able to exercise (especially if there are some hard core runners out there) and keep your milk supply up?? Any advice is welcomed for sure!!

And while we are on the subject...please tell me how you nurse one while chasing around another... :)

I will leave you with three pictures that have NOTHING to do with this post I just wanted to show off my cute kid. These were from our visit down south last week.

Don't be shy, please share your thoughts. I am eager to know!

**new post below**


Valerie said...

I'm definitely not a fitness fanatic, but I managed to nurse Henry for a bit over a year, so I thought I'd chime in. I went to a breastfeeding support group led by a lactation consultant at St. Vincent's, and the advice I heard her repeat over and over to women with supply issues was to quit dieting for awhile. Your body goes into survival mode and cuts off the baby sustenance if it thinks your body is in danger without the calories. I think you could safely exercise if you keep eating like you did when pregnant for awhile longer. The nursing itself burns a lot of calories, so you still need extra. The weight does come off, though possibly more slowly. There are also some ways to build up your supply if you find it dropping off. I had to work on that a bit since Henry was such a sleepy baby, so let me know if I can help at all with advice if you need it later.

paulandjoy said...

I'm not as hard core as you are, but I'll give my 2 cents. I'd say exercise all you want, but eat eat eat! Breastfeeding burns about 500 calories a day in itself. Plus the uterus contracts when you nurse which helps your tummy to return to its flat self. I started running again 4 weeks after Isaiah was born and I was within 5 pounds of my original weight within about 3 months or so? Isaiah is almost 6 months old and my pre-pregnancy jeans are actually a little bit big now and I eat all day long. Make sure you are getting calories! Put yourself on a health food diet(good for you and baby), but not a weight loss kind of diet.
Also, to help increase your milk supply, nurse on demand. Putting baby on a strict schedule can make your milk supply dwindle(I read this in The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding.)

Shelbie and Aaron Rose said...

Hey gorgeous! you look wonderful. I did not lose my weight after Camden, but that was caused by my eating like I was pregnant and starving the entire I nursed AND not being able to leave him in addition to the work I was doing.
This time around I was NOT going to let my weight stick on me again. Now at 9 months post partum I am 20 lbs below pre-pregnancy weight.

-Start slow, exercising changes the taste of your milk. You HAVE to ease into it. I started with Pilates at 4 weeks, then walking, then I started doing cardio at the gym.

-I used just to calculate how many I could eat daily at a rate of losing 1.5lbs per week. I add 350 calories to their recommended calorie count and lost 1.5-2 lbs per week while sticking to that.

-I eat oatmeal each morning for breakfast and take fenugreek when I start feeling less "full".

Try to not rush dropping the weight. I know it is hard, but try to really enjoy the newborn phase (which you now know is over in the blink of an eye) Let your body heal and your milk supply become established before threatening it. Hadley hasn't had any formula AT ALL, while I supplemented with Camden from early on. I am so proud f myself for accomplishingthat and finally accomplishing my weight loss that I wanted soooo badly in between kids. I am down 67lbs since going into the hospital to have her.

Shelbie and Aaron Rose said...

This website has TONS of information of breastfeeding. I might have already given it to you. It has answered nearly every question I have come across. Plus, you know you can ask me anything at all!

Dana said...

Great answers above. I am by no means a fitness fanatic, but I can tell you that frequent nursing burns lots of calories! By the end of the first year, I get to a point where I am so hungry and really probably need to gain some weight. It is the only time in my life where I can basically eat however much I want and still lose weight.

I also think what Joy said was very important- nursing on demand and not trying to schedule feedings. I aim for 2-3 hour feedings and if it goes beyond 3 hours during the day, I do whatever I can to feed the baby right then. I know that some people go up to 4 hours or maybe more, but I have seen people wait that long and lose their milk supply. I like the assurance of knowing that they are getting plenty to eat and that my body knows it needs to continue producing milk. I like to think that it burns more calories too, but that's just my own little mind game.

Now that you've had your experience with Eli, I bet you will do just fine. I had a friend with a situation similar to yours and she did lots of research and is now a breastfeeding guru. :)I can't wait till April 1st!


Lindsey said...

I am definitely not a runner..haha! But I am still nursing Brayden and he is 11 months old and have just recently started to wean him. I gained WAYYY more weight than you did while pregnant (45 lbs to be exact) and didn't diet or exercise after he was born and was back to my prepregnancy weight by 6 months and then lost another 10 pounds by 9 months. That was all due to nursing. I say that to tell you that with how healthy you are and how good of shape you already are in, you should have no problem at all losing the weight even if you back off of your exercise a bit to keep up your milk supply. Maybe you could just slow down how much running you are doing and you may have to eat like a body builder to keep up! My guess is you'll be so busy with 2 little ones that you will have to ease your running schedule anyways. As for how to nurse 1 and chase idea...I'm sure I'll be asking you that question when I have my next one!
Good luck!

Ashley said...

Coming from that sweet cousin ;), I'd have to say Valerie very well described what my lactation consultant said over and over, lol.. and Joy described the weight loss very well.
I didn't go out running, but would take Ella Kate on a leisurely stroll around the neighborhood probably 3 times a week.
I ate anything I wanted (more so than when I was pregnant, because I was starving from all the calories burned from nursing).
I was told by my lactation consultant that it was VERY important for me not to diet at all (until I was finished nursing) and to be sure to keep fatty foods (i.e. cheese, beef, not so much cake, lol...) on my menu. She said that if I wanted to work out to do so in moderation, but no matter what, do not to diet. She swore that the weight would come off if I was nursing.
I was back down to my pre-pregnancy weight by 5 or 6 weeks postpartum and I actually was down 15 pounds from my pre-pregnancy weight by the time she was 6 months! All while eating anything that sounded yummy. I didn't eat any more sweets than normal, just a lot more cheese and meat than normal. In fact I credit the abundance of milk to my mom & dad feeding us like royalty with home cooked meals daily for 3 weeks after Ella Kate came. Had it not been for them, I am POSITIVE my supply wouldn't have been near what it was, which was a little overkill, lol...
All that said towards the end (12 months or so), when I did decide to start being more cautious of what I was eating fat wise (not a whole lot, just a little!), my milk supply decreased enough that I thought I was going to quit producing within a week AND I gained 5 pounds?! (Proud to say that I'm still 10 under pre-pregnancy weight post-nursing!) I went back to not being cautious and my milk supply was fine until we decided to wean completely.
She nursed like clockwork (every 2.5-3 hours) on a Babywise schedule (MANY thanks to you!) for the first couple months. I decided I was done nursing (she pretty much was too) when she was 16+ months.
Sorry that was so long, but it is something I feel as strongly about it as you do! ;)
If I had to quickly sum it up: Do not diet at all (add at least 350 calories to your normal daily intake) and exercise in moderation very gradually (you'll know when you need to slow down ;).
As for help with nursing while having another little one, I want notes!!! =D That is something I'm most nervous about for whenever the next little one blesses our lives!
Love you! And you can do all things through Christ who strengthens you ;)

Shelbie and Aaron Rose said...

I meant to come back and post about nursing with a toddler. My only advice is to try to get him occupied and sit with him and nurse. I nurse Hadley most of the time in the chair in Camden's room while he played. In the very beginning he would curl up on my other side (still does sometimes) and it is just a big snuggle fest. :) I have sat on the floor and nursed her a lot too, but try to avoid that ;) You will find that over time it only gets exponentially easier on both ends. Growing from 2-3 brings about a LOT of independence and, as you know, as time goes by with nursing it continually gets easier as well!