Post-Pregnancy Goal

I am always amazed when I hear stories of how resilient women’s bodies are – Kara Goucher placing 2nd and running a 1:14:02 at the Arizona Half Marathon only 4 months after giving birth to her son…or the story below…

Anna Bretan won the Oakland Marathon in 2011 with a time of 2:53:19.  She wanted to run it again this year and used it as a way to stay in shape during her pregnancy.  She maintained high mileage weeks (40-miles up until delivery) and even ran 5 miles the DAY she gave birth.

The story only gets more amazing.  Within a week after giving birth, she was back to running high mileage and ran the Oakland Marathon again this past weekend – it was only SIX WEEKS after she gave birth.  And not only did she run the distance, she won – again! And her time – 2:57:33. (Source: SF Chronicle)

Source

Crazy?  Many would argue yes.  But aren’t all marathon runners just a little bit crazy?

A much less known story is about a former Army CPT, Jessica Jacobs, now a professional triathlete, who raced the Kona Ironman, only TEN weeks after giving birth to her daughter.  While successfully breastfeeding her daughter, she managed to train for Kona, and completed it in 11:51 – a time many hope to accomplish at some point in their career (Note: her current PR is 8:55:10 – she’s just one of 13 women ever to break 9 hours). (Source: Ironman.com)

So why am I sharing all of this with you?   Even though I had promised my husband I would keep a certain goal private until I knew if it was feasible, I have decided to share it.  I still am not sure if this is completely feasible (for me) but since the story of Anna’s feat occurred just  two days after my conversation with my husband, I took it to be a sign that it’s something I can accomplish.

I plan/hope to run either the NYC or Philadelphia Marathon in November. 

I enjoy running the most when I have something on the horizon – something I can daydream about and visualize.  It allows my workouts/runs to have a purpose.  One of the hardest things for me after my son was born was finding the motivation to be away from him and run – I didn’t want to leave his side for even a moment.  I know that if I had a race I was planning to run, it would have been easier to take that block of time for myself.

My due date is September 27.  While I am cautiously optimistic (stupidly hopeful?) that I will give birth early again, I know I have very little control or ability to predict when pumpkin makes his/her arrival.  Assuming I give birth on or before my due date, my goal will be the NYC Marathon (Nov 4).  If I give birth after my due date, NYC will be too soon (about 4 weeks) so I will turn to the Philadelphia Marathon (Nov 18).

 There are three  pretty big assumptions I am making in order for this all to fall into place:

1. Since I plan to breastfeed exclusively, pumpkin will HAVE TO BE taking a bottle from my husband at least a week before the marathon.  If he/she doesn’t, then there is no way I can be away from him/her for that stretch of time.   These are both very large marathons so my time away will likely be around 6 hours – far too long for a newborn to go without nursing.

2.  I have an easy and comfortable pregnancy that allows me to run upwards of 25-30 miles in the last few weeks of pregnancy.  I did this with my son, so I’m hopeful that I have a similar experience.  If I’m not able to maintain that baseline mileage, I run the risk of injury by trying to do too many miles too soon.

3. I have no complications with delivery / do not require a C-section.  I was back on the treadmill 5 days after my son was born.  If something happens during L&D that precludes me from getting the miles in soon after the baby is born, the window gets too small to get the adequate number of miles and long runs in.

As is the case with all of my running and training, my children, and their health and well-being, come first.  Nursing successfully is my priority, so if I notice that the increase in miles/intensity is affecting my milk supply or my time with pumpkin, the marathon will be cancelled and I will turn my attention to my spring marathon goal!

In case you didn’t know, the 2012 ING NYC Marathon theme is: Run to turn “I can’t” into “I did” – which I think is a fantastic theme – you can do anything you put your  heart and mind to!!

Have you scheduled a race soon after giving birth or an injury to help motivate you and get you back on track? 

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    51 thoughts on “Post-Pregnancy Goal

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    2. Such an exciting post! I loved reading about the runner you mentioned and her accomplishments!! That is awesome – God gave us such amazing bodies!! I signed up the day the signups opened – for the Marine Corps Marathon 2012 which will be my first marathon, Lord willing! I knew I had to get a spot before they sold out, and this would be a really special race for me because I will run with “Run to Honor,” a group of fellow Naval Academy Alumni running to honor our fallen and their families. I am due July 14 and will hopefully start training about two weeks later which will give me about 3 months. Heck, I don’t even know where I’ll be living since we’re in the UK right now, and my husband finishes up July 15, and we still don’t have orders. Let’s just hope I’m at least on the mainland somewhere!! :) I wanted to encourage you about the nursing aspect since you expressed (pun intended) some concern about it. I’ve nursed my previous five – exclusively to 1 year (as in no solids until they were one). It wasn’t until my third that I really started pumping and doing bottles in earnest to be able to have the freedom to lead a ladies’ Bible study in the area (I had pumped a few times with number 2 to play a couple concerts with a wind ensemble, but I wasn’t too serious about it.) By number 4 I was playing the bagpipes a lot and needed to have successful pumping to be able to make piping gigs and such where I was often away quite a while. Pumping has ALWAYS been hard for me — I have always had barely enough milk to nurse, and then pumping – getting a let-down would be a challenge sometimes. It wasn’t until my 5th (when I added running to the equation, and was piping even more) that I finally had all the pieces to put together (from my previous 4 experiences) of HOW TO MAXIMIZE MY MILK PRODUCTION TO BE ABLE TO SUCCESSFULLY PUMP. There are SO many factors involved, and I don’t think you would have been concerned about it if you’d had a ton of milk the first pregnancy – like so many other people I know. So here’s a little advice based on what I would consider to be vast experience (perhaps not as vast as someone who’s nursed 10 or 20 kids, but hey, five is still a lot :)) — Running in the morning is the best because your milk supply is NATURALLY highest first thing in the morning. Often in the morning you may have more than your baby can even successfully take (except for during the 3, 6, and 8 week growth spurts when the baby tries to up your supply – or whenever those growth spurts kick in for your baby). If you want to run before baby’s up then pump, and don’t worry about having enough when you get back. Whoever’s home with baby can feed the baby the bottle if you’re not back when he/she wakes up. If you get home and baby is still sleeping, you can wake the baby up and nurse then. You probably won’t have enough to really satiate the baby at that point, but if this is the scenario for me, then I nurse again before the next nap to “top him off” and to stimulate more milk production. If the baby’s had the bottle while I’ve been running then I immediately pump when I get home and then baby will take a nap without any additional feeding because it’s had that normal superhuge first-thing in the morning feeding, but from a bottle. If you HAVE to run later in the day, you’re going to be fighting the naturally-occurring lower milk supply of late afternoon. It took me all these babies to learn this, but even though I normally do a roughly 3-hour nursing schedule where I feed the baby, keep it up til about 90 minutes after it first woke, and then have it nap about 90 minutes (then repeat) I have discovered that for my low-milk-producing body, that I need to add extra nursings in the afternoon/even in order to stimulate my milk production, not for the baby. This may sound backwards to most people, but my number one goal after delivery is establishing and maintaining my milk supply. Baby will get enough IF I TAKE CARE OF MYSELF FIRST. So in the afternoon maybe by 4 or so I switch to nursing every 2 hours where the baby is fed right after a nap, and ‘topped off’ again right before the next nap (even if it’s only been 1 1/2, and not quite 2 hours.) Also, with this last baby I maintained the extra late night feeding until she was about 1 year old — meaning that I’d do that last 9pm-ish feeding and put the baby down for bed (I know that’s later than most people but we don’t start the baby’s day til between 8 and 9, rather than the normal early rising of 6-7 like most of the people I know) but then I’d stay up another few hours and wake her up for another feeding, putting her straight back down to sleep til I got her up again around 9am. This kept my cycle away longer than any time so far (I never even had a period and became pregnant when she was 13 1/2 months.) It also kept my milk supply up high enough to be able to pump the whole time (in the past I’d only been able to pump til around 8 months then could never get a let-down) and to never struggle when she had growth spurts. Normally when a growth spurt would hit (especially the 6 month one) the baby would wake up in the night for about a three days straight before I could get the supply back up enough to have it sleep through again — this last time, though, she just nursed a little longer during each one during the day and never woke at night. Okay that’s all of my two cents for now :) I am sure you are tired of it by now :) I will be following you and cheering you on for your marathon!!
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      • OMG. This is so helpful! I definitely am a morning runner! The problem I ran into with my son was that he refused to take a bottle until he was 5 months old! I would get up, pump, head out for my run and inevitably get called from my husband that my son was up, crying, hungry, and not taking the bottle. Looking back, we probably should have stuck with it a bit more – I know that me jumping in when he first refused each time was probably not the smartest thing to do. But, I couldn’t stand the sound of him crying – at all – and wanted to stop the crying as soon as it started. So I would run home and nurse him. 95% of the time, I would already be cooled down after the nursing and wouldn’t be in the mood to run again. When did you first introduce the bottle to your children? I think we waited a bit long (8 mo) – but I just felt that I am a SAHM and so there was no reason to worry about bottles or anything like that until it was necessary. I am going to try much earlier this time around for many reasons – one of which is running high mileage soon after he is born…

        • Sounds like from reading about your last post-pregnancy runs that you really did an awesome job figuring out how you could successfully nurse and train for your awesome goals! With our first I never introduced a bottle, and with the second only once or twice foisted it on him for some concerts I was playing in – he refused it the few other times we tried (and besides, pumping itself was a real challenge to me!) WIth the third I needed to pump to be able to make some outside commitments, but I wasn’t super concerned about making it happen or making plenty of milk and keeping it up, etc. I think we introduced the bottle around 2 weeks that time. By the time I had numbers 4 and 5, I was an avid bagpiper and then a committed runner as well (with #5) and my little time away from the children to pursue my own health and sanity became a high priority to me! I don’t remember when I introduced it with #4 but definitely with #5 it was right away – like maybe 5 days old? We tried to do it once a day since we had some live-in help at the time, which was helpful in getting some pumping done and making the time to give the bottle and still pump to take care of my need to nurse, etc (it’s a lot to juggle!) So by about week 2/3, we were able to really do a bottle, whether it was from me or from someone else. We made it work those first few weeks by doing it with me there to coach the person feeding the bottle (just like learning to nurse, learning to bottle-feed takes time unless you have a voracious eater who doesn’t care how the bottle goes in his mouth), sometimes having me doing it, and sometimes the other person. I think really establishing the habit without having it just be “when necessary” because you’re already gone really helped. It took the pressure off because I was right there if the baby wouldn’t take it and I needed to nurse. (and in those first days I was more able to produce again so soon after pumping, which later on would have been impossible, so it was always possible to feed the baby SOMETHING.) I hadn’t read your post on running and nursing yet when I wrote my first comment and can see now that you had already said a lot of things I wrote in my first comment :) Sorry about that! :) Now if it would stop raining I would really love to go out for a run! It’s been raining for 6 days now…great British weather!
          Coreyanne Armstrong recently posted..When getting dressed to run takes as long as the run…My Profile

    3. You are amazing! I love your goal but what I love more is that you are very realistic and you have already thought of the things that could possibly be an issue and you’re ok if you need to change your goal. You commented on my DM post regarding pregnant runners, etc, and sent a FR so that’s how I found your blog. I’m starting week 35 today and have been lucky (determined?) that I’ve felt well enough to still run and workout. I’m having a lot of pain that is only painful to me and not harmful to baby girl. So I’m working through it because I know continuing and being healthy is the best thing for us. I’ve never run a marathon, although had planned to train for a spring one but didn’t one to push while prego. lol! However, as much as I knew I wanted to start running again right away and workout, early on in the pregnancy I started to feel guilty that I would want to be away from baby girl to that. Love the husband for encouraging me. I’m already signed up for a fall half marathon. The same one I did last year while pregnant. It’s just the goal I need to make sure I get in my workouts and train. Something I know will make me happier and in turn a better Mom. I also plan to breast freed exclusively so I have already been worried/thinking about how to make that work with the long runs. Hearing that you were back on the TM 5 days after giving birth to your first is a huge encouragement for me! Fingers crossed I feel well enough that I can bounce back fast! I’m signed up to walk a 5k 1.5 weeks after my due date.

      • Hey Kris! I agree about not pushing too much while your pregnant. Not sure if you’ve read any of my other posts, but I limit myself to half marathons while I’m pregnant and won’t do them past the 6 month mark – it’s just too much stress on my body (for me). I run during pregnancy to stay healthy for myself and the baby and don’t see a reason to go to extremes to do anything.
        Speaking from personal experience, it was tough for me to leave my son for even moments at a time. The only time when I felt comfortable to do that was when he was asleep – so my runs were ALL centered around his naps and bedtime. I will tell you that I still struggle with it at times – and he’s 15 mo! It’s this little feeling like I am being selfish for doing something for myself and “leaving him” at home. But, as I’ve learned, I am a better mom when I take that 45-90 min (or however long it is) and get outside and run. You’ll figure it out on your own and learn what works best for you and your little one! The same with learning to bf and get in those long runs. The biggest thing for me was learning that my long runs are based on my son’s schedule – no longer can I just say I’m heading out at 7am. It depends on what type of night he’s had, when he has eaten last, etc. But again, you’ll fall into a routine fairly quickly. Congrats on having the perseverance to keep running!! And for signing up for a race after the baby is born!! I hope the next few weeks go by quickly and easily for you!! =)

    4. Hi! I just found your blog and being a running mom of 2 i love what i am reading! I am currently nursing my youngest who is 6 months and for the most part, running is going great. I definitely rely on the treadmill more than I use to, and I am the queen of splitting up long runs. This weekend I’ll run my first race post baby – a half marathon. I ran a half when my first daughter was about th same age, but this time I am actually quite a bit stronger and faster and I attribute it all to being dedicated to core work from day one.
      Good luck on your goals and I’m so excited to keep reading!

      • Hey Grace! Glad you found my blog!! Congrats on training for a half while nursing! In my book it is a huge accomplishment! And GOOD LUCK on your half this weekend – let me know how it goes! I never thought I would get comfortable logging my miles on the treadmill, but when that’s the only option, you learn to accept and appreciate it. Most of my runs during the winter months have been on the treadmill when my son naps. I am itching for it to get lighter, sooner, so that I can run before my husband has to leave for work (5am). I agree about the core work – I’ve also learned to make every run, every mile count – no more wasted time just logging long, slow miles!!

    5. I just read your blog for the first time a couple of weeks ago. I am 32 wks preg. with my first baby and due to deep ligament pain in my groin and hip I had to stop running at 28 wks. I tried to run again 2 wks ago and it was miserable and extremely painful. I was maintaining 40 mpw up until the end of February too! (I was doing 80+ in the summer before I was preg). As I am reading your post I am hopeful for you, and other preg. runners, that if anything derails your training (as the ligament issues did with me) you don’t get as emotional as I have! My poor husband has been awesome about my crummy mood sometimes. I am going to all sorts of classes at my gym and lifting to maintain as much fitness as I can, but I fear it is going to be a long road back to my pre-preg levels of fitness. I am hoping to be at Philly, so in a way I am hoping you end up there too! It seems like you seem pretty even keeled about how to approach all aspects of being a running mom – I ll be following along and maybe we’ll both be out there in November listening to Eye of the Tiger playing over and over and over again at the start 😀

      • Oh gosh, Liz, I am sorry to hear about that. I am going to have my husband read what you wrote b/c at least then he’ll know that I’m not the only one that becomes SO miserable when something (other than myself) prevents me from running for a stretch of time. Part of me is thinking about just scraping NYC and signing up for Philly, but I know that it will be easier if I do NYC (my mom lives right by start and sis lives 2 blocks from finish). We shall see! I hope that the next ~8 weeks (maybe a week or two less!) go by quickly for you…and I look forward to hearing about your training post-baby. I’d be interested to hear how soon you get your miles up and how you are feeling!!!
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    6. I love all these stories, so inspiring! I think the fact that you already went through one pregnancy running makes it much more likely that this will go smoothly as well. It’s great to shoot high and have something on the horizon! I got back to running about a week after delivery as well, and ran my first race 8 weeks later (10k) with one of my fastest times. I’ll be cheering you on! By the way, I am only an hour from Galveston and would love to meet up and cheer on the Ironman with you… however, my family will be visiting from PA so it’s probably not very likely. Have a great time!

      • Hey Laura! I’m bummed that your family is in town (for selfish reasons) but i know how imp family time is! This is my 2nd time to Galveston (was here 8 years ago!) – such a fun place to vacation! When the time comes for me, I’d love to chat with you about how you felt post-delivery. I have read several stories of females injuring themselves and am definitely concerned with ramping things up too fast. Congrats btw on the awesome race post baby =) I’ve heard so many great stories from the females that commented on this blog post!! It’s so awesome to know it’s been done before!

    7. I can’t wait to follow along on your pregnancy and post-pregnancy plans of the NYC marathon! I am due in just 2.5 weeks and am already signed up for the 2012 NYC Marathon as well. I can’t wait to run it!
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    8. I think it’s great to have a plan, especially when you go into it knowing that there could be set-backs that mean you won’t actually get to participate in the event. I’m waiting until after my half-marathon in May to figure out my plan of attack for after the baby is born but I’m thinking about a 10K on October 6, which would be two months after my due date.
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      • I think one of the reasons I have this all planned out is that I have to sign up early!! LOL. So I’m basically being forced to! You’ll have to keep me posted on how training is going after you deliver this summer! Learning from other females who went through the same thing is the best way to learn!

    9. I love that you have such ambitious goals, I think it’s great and that all too often we are much more likely to sell ourself short. As long as you listen to your body and train smart, then you’ll do great.

      After my first pregnancy (born in april) I ran 5k, 10k, 10mi races for the first 4 mos (in that order), each of them slow, but finishing the distance. At 6 most pp, I ran a half, and pr’ed it! My next LO is due early Sept, so the racing schedule is a bit harder to squeeze things in. I’m hoping to run more and keep my mileage higher during this pregnancy but don’t think that I’ll be ready for the last half of the season (November), so will probably just work through the winter at getting a good base built and aim for a Spring half, and maybe a Fall full.

      On the pumping discussion – I had a friend race a mara when her baby was pretty young, she pumped and dumped in a porta potty w/ a cheapo manual pump and then checked it, if you found a super cheapo pump you could always dump the pump also.

    10. I had planned to run the boston marathon @21wks pregnant but due some back problems i couldnt(also ob was very against) so I signed up for the philidelphia marathon in June 2011 asphoto action. I was due 8/25 with my first… I ran my entire pregnancy but into my second trimester developed back pain, my daughter was on my siatic nerve… Did PT and saw a chiro… It slowed down my training for a while, very difficult mentally. I ran 5 miles 7 days after giving birth- easy delivery hardest thing for me was these new GIANT engorged breast. They hurt, had to wear two bras but I managed to get in my training for Philly and then the wk before I got mastitis- it was an awful feeling so again I had to make the choice to run a crappy Mara just to say I did it or skip, get stronger and train for Boston 2012. I skipped and feel ready to run boston, strong with my 7m old who finally takes a bottle watching me finish. My advice is to not pur too much pressure on yourself to bounce back. You can prob get your race in if all the stars are aligned but for me they weren’t… I don’t think I was being realistic, I never expected these new hurdles to overcome. Best of luck!! Sounds like you have a supportive husband, that’s huge.

      • Oh gosh. I got mastitis with my son – it is NO joke. I thought I had the flu before I realized what it was. I think that was a smart decision not to run! I could not agree more with what you said. The stars all need to align for me to run the race…but I feel like I want a goal to aim for – something to keep me motivated. The running after pregnancy part was fine for me too – I found it so much easier than the previous few months – esp considering I was carrying 20 pounds less =) Thanks for your honest comment – I really appreciate hearing from other women who ran post pregnancy to see how they felt!!!
        GOOD LUCK at Boston in a few weeks! Let me know how it goes for you =)

    11. Great post! I had heard a few of those inspiring women stories but the Ironman one was new to me. I think having a goal (like a marathon) is a great way to stay motivated while you are pregnant and running. While I was pregnant with my last baby I had the Boston Marathon motivating me. I think knowing that was coming up just a few months after giving birth was the only thing that kept me running during my last trimester when it just got so hard.

      All that being said, I jumped back into running (more miles) too quickly. I pushed my body too hard too fast when it needed to rest. All women are different. Some can handle more than others. It sounds like you have the right attitude about it all. You are just going to do the best you can re-evaluate as the date approaches. In my case, I had a very condensed training schedule. I knew it was a little risky but I wanted to run Boston so bad. Unfortunately, I found out the week before Boston that I had a sacral stress fracture (on my pelvic bone). I was not able to run Boston at all and HAD to rest my body so it could heal. I am NOT trying to be a downer at all. I would just advise any new mom to be careful and to not increase miles by more than 10-15% per week. Looking back I know the off time was good for me. I was forced to take a break and enjoy time with my new baby. I knew that when I started back again I would work hard and train smart.

      Again, I am not trying to say you shouldn’t run NYC or Philly. I hope you can! Keep running and use the race as a motivation. The key is listening to your body and knowing what is realistic. Once your baby is born if you felt overwhelmed at the thought of doing a full in November maybe you could do a half… My first race post baby was a half and it was so much fun!
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      • OMG. Tia, Thank you so much for this honest, awesome response. I agree with everything you said…I really think it is based on the woman…with that said, I have NO idea if I will physically and emotionally be able one of the races to run so soon after. My plan is to not increase more than 10% each week – that’s why the mileage at the end is so important. If I am not running close to 25-30 miles at the end of pregnancy, it becomes a risky (and dumb) goal – there will be no way that I can safely get up to necessary miles in time.
        I’m also not taking into account how STRESSED out I could feel with 2 little ones – I may be getting NO sleep and may not have the energy to run much the first 6-8 weeks…If that happens, the marathon will get bumped a bit.
        I think the problem happens when someone is SO determined on a goal that they run through the warning signs of injury or stress. My husband does a pretty good job at keeping me level with things and he will be the first to tell me to stop training and cancel the marathon.
        Thank you for this – it is nice to hear stories of women who ran so soon post pregnancy (regardless of the result). xoxox

    12. I love when people dream big.. it is so completely inspiring. If you can dream it it can be! I am such a fan of yours.. I believe you CAN do this, but if God has a different plan I know you will handle that with style and grace too. You are one tough running Momma! <3
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    13. Wow! We totally hope this us when we pregnant! So love that you have put all of this out there!! Love your goals and can’t wait to see just how they play out! Just one question – what will you do in terms of registering for the race you end up doing? Register for both? Defer if you need to with one?
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      • Thank YOU!! The registration is the only part I still am working out. I have to do a little research to find out when Philly closed out last year. I’m hoping that it didn’t fill up until pretty close before the race – in which case I can hold off on registering until I see if NYC is a go or no go. While I won’t get my $ back for NYC, I can defer my registration for next year. =)

        • Great post btw! last yr The marathon was still open into early October. Maybe later…but the 1/2 sold out early and you couldn’t downgrade from the Mara to the 1/2, but you could upgrade from 1/2 to Mara since it wasn’t full. I wanted to just do the 1/2 but would have had a DNF since it was full.

    14. I’m being induced in one week (April 3) and am signed up for the Baltimore Half in October. This will be my 3rd half. I ran my first half 3 months after my first son was born. I can’t wait to get back out there! Good luck to you!

      • That’s awesome!!! Congrats on the (almost) arrival of your little one!! And that’s awesome that you already have a post pregnancy race to train for!!! You’ll have to let me know how you feel during training after the baby is born =) Hope you have an easy L&D!

    15. Michele, that’s awesome! I am seriously in awe of you. I think you know best your body and you absolutely won’t do anything that’s above and beyond your reach. I’ve been so caught up in my race plans for the next few months that I hadn’t considered a goal for the fall – thanks for the inspiration!

      • Thanks, Veronika!!! I find that I need to have a race on the horizon otherwise my runs are just boring and no fun! LOL. Have you thought about maybe the SI Half in Oct?? Might be a good 1st race for you!!! Then I can come cheer too!!! =)

    16. Oh this post gives me hope!! Doing all of this for the first time has been such a learning experience and I’m still unsure of what I can/should/will be able to do once my little one is born! But I love love love stories like yours and the ones you have shared. I don’t mind taking a break from running after my baby is born if my body says I need to or if my little one has needs I must meet, but I do look forward to RACING and TRAINING and new PRs and new marathon states and all the goals that I have set aside for now. I love to day dream and visualize them, like you said and I spend many leisurely runs these days doing just that (when I’m not day dreaming and visualizing my little one, that is). :) GREAT post and SUCH an encouragement for this running mama!
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    17. Hi Michelle-WOW! Such huge ambitions! If you are running in Philadelphia-I live nearby. I will look into starting and ending points to see what I am near/ I have a 5k in November but don’t have a date for it yet. I’m sure it’s before the marathon. Let me know how or if I can do anything for you. Even if you don’t need my help, let me know if you are running here, I would love to be at the Finish Line for you! Best of luck to you -you are awesome!

      Sue

    18. U WILL DO IT!! i nursed both my kiddies and hubby gave them breastmilk bottles from 1st week home…it was never an issue of giving the bottle too soon…everyone has their own opinion, but both children were comfortable with bottle and boob, they just wanted to eat! haaaa!!! u go mama!!! u r an inspiration. xo

    19. What’s your plan for pumping before the race? That would be my major concern with breast feeding. If you can’t pump right before the race (which would will be more of a challenge with bigger races) you could end up being VERY uncomfortable in those final miles if not in pain.

      • Hey Sarah, I probably should have put a part in there about that…For NYC, I’m pretty lucky – my mom lives 10 min from the start, so I don’t plan on getting to the staging area hours beforehand. I will feed him/her right before I leave (or in the car at the drop off point). If necessary, I may manually express in one of the port-o-potties as close to the start time as I can. I realize that if I take a pump, I’ll have to check it which could take up a lot of time. My sister lives less than 2 blocks from the finish line, so my husband will be there with the baby. I’ll have to look into logistics for Philadelphia but I’m sure it will be something similar!!!

    20. You are such an amazing and strong runner. I know you will have no problem achieving your goal!

    21. You know I love your enthusiasm and positivity about running! But I won’t be recommending this to the moms I coach anytime soon. Current research shows this is just not a good idea (writing a post on this now that is not quite done). As a runner, i do understand the heart and enthusiasm of running though.
      Andrea recently posted..Running Research: Running and NursingMy Profile

      • Andrea, I am working to receive my certification to be a pre and post-natal exercise specialist so have read several books on exercise during and after pregnancy. Based on several sources (including Exercising Through Pregnancy by Dr. Clapp), the whole notion of taking six weeks to resume full daily activities is not factual based on his studies. Dr Clapp calls the two weeks after birth a “spontaneous pattern of exercise” (for most females who remained active throughout their pregnancy) in which they returned to exercise and there are no signs or studies that show harm or injury. (He does mention that it still is the recommendation by the American College of OB/GYN). It IS true that most active women don’t reach their predelivery level for 2-3 months. And I agree 100% with this. I don’t expect to be running my pre-pregnancy goal of 3:10 in Nov. If I can safely run 30 miles/week before my child is born, slowly building to 45-50 over a period of 5 weeks is not a huge change – for me. Now if I can’t get those miles in, then it becomes dangerous for me to jump back into the high mileage. But at the end of the day, I will base everything off of how I feel and how the baby is progressing. I have run long enough to know when something “doesn’t feel right” and am confident in my ability to slow down and let go of my goals at that time.

    22. This is such an inspiring post.

      So many people I know say you “can’t do…” about all sorts of things through pregnancy and life after baby arrives, this scares me if I am honest. This post and your attitude, however, counterbalances off of that nay-saying and makes me feel positive an excited! Both about my own future but also about yours and your family’s! I am so excited for you that have all these on your horizon, pumpkin AND a marathon! 2012 is going to be such a great year for you.

    23. I am so excited for you–and I love to hear about women maintaining running (successfully) throughout a pregnancy and getting right back in it after delivery.

    24. I love this post. It is not crazy to think you can accomplish this with the base you have now and the previous experience you have as pregnant runner!