Four Weeks Post Baby

Wells is 4 weeks old! (He turned 4 weeks on Friday, which is when I started this post!)

My little cutie after bath time!

My most exciting news is: I STARTED RUNNING! The first thing I thought was, “wow! I feel 20lbs lighter than the last time I ran!” Of course I immediately realized that’s because I AM 20lbs lighter than the last time I ran! :) I’m just doing easy runs right now, and my pace is nothing to brag about, but my-oh-my does it feel good to be back at it! I was actually sore (mostly calves and some hamstring) after my first 2 runs! Feeling good now.

First run, 3.5 weeks after having Wells.

The first run was a 3 mile run, 3.5 weeks after giving birth to Wells. I waited exactly 4 weeks with Currie. I had a mental checklist of things that needed to happen before I started running:

  • Have desire to run: The first week, I really didn’t think about running. Then Twin Cities Marathon happened and so many buddies ran awesome times that weekend and I started itching to run. Check!
  • Get rid of stomach pains: After giving birth, you have stomach pains and cramping as your uterus shrinks back down to normal size. They were more intense this time than with my first. I also had soreness when pushing on my stomach. I wanted to wait until all pain in my body was gone before adding the stress of running. Check!
  • Get some sleep: I’m definitely an exhausted mama, but got some decent sleep the night before my first run. When Currie was a baby, I really did sleep when she slept. I wasn’t a tired new mom (until she stopped sleeping around 16-18 months). This time, I’m feeling the pain but am determined to start figuring out my sleep situation so I can train at the level I need to reach my goals! So sort of… check!
  • Start working on Diastasis Recti: With both pregnancies, I had a separation of my abdominal muscles. Two weeks after having Wells, when my stomach was feeling more normal, I checked the status of my abs and noticed I had a good 3.5 finger widths separation between them. I started doing 2 really basic exercises to bring them back together. First one, simply contracting abs, pulling towards spine. Second one, pelvic tilts, not even bringing bottom off the ground, just a slight tilt and flattening the arch in my back while pulling abs toward spine again. I feel like I’m making progress. Check!
  • Good weather day: Ok, this is silly, but I wanted my first run to be on a sunny, cool day-my favorite running weather. (My second run was on a rainy, cold day and I enjoyed it just as much!) Check!

Run #2, the next day. Super excited to get out there, even in the first cold rain of the season.

AND NOW FOR THE TMI PARTS OF MY CHECKLIST. Feel free to scroll down and not read the next few points, but these were things no one told me about before my first child and they came as a big surprise to me so here they are:
  • Wait for bleeding to stop: After you have a baby, you bleed for 2-6 weeks! It starts super heavy after birth, then becomes period-like, and gradually tapers down to nothing. I bled for exactly 4 weeks with Currie and started running the second it was over. I felt like that was a good indication my body was ready for activity. Check!
  • Boob pain-Get the milk supply under control: About 3 days after giving birth, your milk supply comes in, and assuming you don’t have any problems, it comes in full force. Then it slows down when your body realizes how much your child needs. I’m lucky to be a super milk producer, I always have a lot, but it causes a lot of breast tenderness and leaking. I feel like it stabilized around 2 weeks postpartum with Currie (where I wasn’t in as much pain). This time, it took 3.5 weeks. In fact, many days, I only have about an hour after each feeding before I’m full, tender, and leaking again. This doesn’t make for the most comfortable run. I’ve spaced my runs during that sweet spot, sometime within an hour after feeding Wells. Check!
I’ll wrap things up with my 4 weeks racing kit pic:

4 weeks!

 Questions for you:

Anything on your “checklist” before starting to run again either after baby or injury?

What’s your favorite running weather?


15 thoughts on “Four Weeks Post Baby

  1. Hey tell it like it is:) Omg!
    Can not wait to see you dominating again. With you, your husband and family having super running knowledge to lean on–your well on your way!!!!!

  2. CONGRATULATIONS on your beautiful baby! I’m so happy for you! You are definitely an inspiration for future runner/mothers:) I’ve heard of diastasis recti before but never from a runner. How does it affect you? You sound pretty casual about it so maybe it’s not as big of a concern as I thought it was. Congrats again on everything:)

    • Thanks Brittany! How are you feeling? Are you back to running? The diastasis recti doesn’t really affect me other than cosmetically… I want my abs looking good and tight when the baby weight comes off! 😉

  3. I’m glad you are running again. On my injury check list is wanting to run too. Why would you force yourself to run when you truly don’t want too?

    I love how casual and nonstressful your approach is to coming back to running. I know it’s going to make for a great 2014.

  4. I didn’t make a check list, I just tried to wait as long as humanely possible. I was really thankful that your TMI #1 for me only lasted about 2.5 weeks. I also worried about the abdominal separation, and like you, started doing work about 2ish weeks in, with planks. I basically just jumped out there when I could, which was right at 3.5 weeks. I made myself feel better about it because I started by run/walking 3-4 miles, then built up to a 3 mile run over a week!

    Wells is so adorable, I can’t even get over him!!!!!

    • Thanks Crystal! I think I’m starting planks this week! I bet they will feel really hard after not doing anything like that for at least 10 months! :)

  5. Oh my goodness, Wells is just the cutest! And you are already looking fabulous, and sounds like feeling pretty fabulous too, which is the most important. So happy for you!

    And my favorite running weather is the first day or two of 50-55* and sunshine after a long winter … where it feels so warm, and so amazing, and you bust out short sleeves for the first time in months. Nothing beats that feeling!

  6. I suffered from diastasis recti after having my kids (4 yr old twins, 2 yr old) and still feel the seperation. I’ve heard traditional crunches are not good. Were you able to get your muscles back together with the 2 exercises you listed? I’d really like to make more progress. Thx!

    • You are right, Jennifer! Everything I’ve read says traditional crunches are not good! My muscles seemed to move back together after my first child after a few months. I didn’t do any regular crunches, I really never do! I did the ones mentioned plus planks and thought those all helped! This time around, I don’t know what the end result will be, but I’m hoping for the same. Good luck to you!

  7. It’s nearly impossible to NOT run in the fall… best season for running in my opinion. Must be the scent of the leaves that brings back old cross country memories! I love checking twitter for race results around this time of year, so exciting! Hopefully I can get my butt in shape by this time next year. You’re looking great Jen!

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