Friday, July 24, 2015

4 Months Postpartum

Last month running was going so well and I felt so strong. This month has been a bit off. I haven't gotten a long run in at all. I seriously have not run over 6 miles in 4 weeks! So much for getting up to 10-12 miles this month! The first week of the month I was miserable and thought I was sick before I realized I was having terrible issues with allergies. When I thought I was sick I skipped my long run and a couple weekly runs in an attempt to feel better. With the help of my mom I came to the realization I wasn't sick, it was allergies. I got the go-ahead from our pediatrician to take allergy medication while breastfeeding and started to feel better within hours. The next week we were visiting Ty's family and I didn't get a chance to get a long run in. Then the next 2 weeks we had 5k races and I didn't want to overdo it by running a long run the day after a race and a long run on a week day just isn't feasible with Carter in the stroller.
My sweet, little 4 month old!
Although I didn't get a long run in, I did get a speed work out in each week except this past one. I added in a half mile repeat and then a second one later. Now my speed workouts look like this: 0.25-1 mile warm up depending on how much time I have, 3x0.25 at 7:20 pace as a goal (with the stroller it's slower, without it I'm often faster), 2x0.5 at same pace, 3x0.25 at same pace, 0.25-1 mile cool down depending on time. All repeats are run with 1/10 of a mile recovery between. My goal for the quarters is 1:50. I had one work out where I hit 1:38 for one of them which I was pumped about! I did add a tempo run in during the first week. My goal was to run a mile warm up, one mile tempo at 7:30 pace, and a mile cool down. I was pumped when I ran my tempo mile in 7:12 and felt great! The next 2 weeks my 5ks counted as my tempo run as I wanted to have plenty of recovery time between speed work and my races so I didn't want to add in a tempo run as well.
The stroller fan I got has come in so handy this month!
We ran the Firecracker 5k and I felt great about my race, finishing in 23:21 and hitting super consistent miles at 7:30, 7:30, and 7:27! Then I couldn't help but compare my time to my time from after Carter was born and was bummed I had run a 22:50 after Carter. I know I was almost 7 months postpartum then compared to almost 4 months postpartum this time which gives me 3 fewer months of recovery/training, but I still wished I'd run a bit faster. I went into my next race hoping to better my time and despite a terrible race where I consistently slowed down each mile, I ran a 22:35. I should have been pleased with my time but the way I ran the race left me unimpressed. My legs felt terrible after about the half way point and I gave up, letting my pace falter.

Taking off at the start of the Midsummer's Night 5k.
The entire week after that second race my legs felt trashed and I struggled to hit paces without the stroller that I can normally run with it. I would compare how my legs felt and how my recovery went to post half-marathon. My legs actually felt worse and it was taking me longer to recover than it typically does for a half. I got up early to run while Ty got ready for work so I could run without the stroller and hopefully recover quicker. I also wanted more time at home with Carter in the mornings to work on potty training rather than taking him on a run with no access to a potty. I also kept adding another easy recovery run in hopes my legs would shake out and feel better the next day. Each day I was bummed when I got out there and felt terrible again. I ended up skipping my speed workout, tempo run, and long run for the week in hopes the next week I could start fresh with recovered legs. I didn't want to run those hard workouts on worn out legs and worsen my issues.
Sweetest running buddies you'll ever see!
That last week of this month was so disappointing and got me down. I was bummed about my training going downhill and missing out on all of my hard workouts for the week. I hated running so slow and coming home from a run exhausted. It was really hard for me mentally. I think the problem was that running 5ks back to back weekends was too much for my body right now. I didn't think anything of it when we signed up because it was the type of thing I would have done with no problems before, but I forget that I just had a baby a few months ago and don't give myself enough of a break. I mean, I've only been running consistently with no walk breaks for about 2.5 months. When I think of it like that it helps me put things in perspective. Now I have a better understanding of what my body can handle right now and back to back races isn't something I'll do again for a while. Maybe I could've done it had I not run speed work 4 days after the first 5k/3 days before the second race which gave me shorter recovery after the race and left my legs tired going into the next one. Whatever the case I am optimistic that my training will get back on track this week and I'll have a better month since I'm just running one race. I need a bit of a confidence builder after this past week!
Carter loves to take care of his sister while we run!
I stopped having continuous bleeding at 9 weeks postpartum. Since then I would randomly bleed about 1-2 days a week, some weeks not at all. I finally called my doctor's office because I was starting to worry something might be wrong with me. They had me come in for an ultrasound and blood work. The ultrasound looked good and showed the lining of my uterus was super thin with no placenta materials left behind. The blood work also came back normal. The doctor wasn't concerned and said my options were to just deal with the bleeding, have a D&C, or stop breastfeeding and go on a birth control with estrogen to stop the bleeding. The obvious choice for me was to just deal with the bleeding. I know every pregnancy, labor and delivery, and recovery is different but I can't help but think I jumped back into running too quickly and too strenuously after Elise's birth and am now paying the price. Although that could be completely unrelated, who knows! Hopefully I'll have something better to report next month!
No matter what, she's so worth it!


  1. My doctor described the bleeding like a scab. She said the spot where the placenta was is a scab and running too much/hard too soon reopens the scab, which causes the bleeding to continue. I had to wait a good 6 weeks before the bleeding stopped even without running. It is so annoying! I feel your pain! You'll get back into your running groove soon!

    1. That's what my doctor said at my 6 week check-up. I guess I should've backed off a bit then. Oops!