Wednesday, December 03, 2008

a HUGE question

Hello all! This is my first post and I have a huge question that I hope you can help me out with. I am the mother of 4 boys. (In this picture, my 3 month old baby is nestled snugly in a babysling under my husband's coat.) I ran my first marathon last year and am addicted to running, but I think I might have started doing too much too soon with this last baby. I am a nursing mom and am afraid I might be losing my milk, which completely terrifies me.
I have cut back on running and have started to drink an herbal tea for nursing mothers, but running is my "sanity" and I am really missing it.

**Have any of you successfully nursed while training?**
Any tips or suggestions would be greatly appreciated!


Steffany said...

I have just one baby so far, but I had a similar experience. I waited until my son was five months old to begin running again (three to four times a week). I did everything I could to sustain my milk supply, such as running right after I fed him so that I would have plenty of time to recover before the next feeding--but to no avail. Once my body began adapting to meet my running needs, it seemed to automatically begin shutting down on the lactation end of things. I too drank plenty of Mother's Milk tea, and I wasn't running strenuously (I couldn't, being at minimum 7 months out of shape at that point!). But I can definitely identify that specific time as the tipping point in my nursing.

I tried my best to stick it out, but ultimately my son was completely weaned by 7 months--a full 5 months before I ever thought I would wean him. My husband helped me work through the emotional issues, and our boy is very healthy and a terrific eater, so I was able to let go of any residual guilt. Still, I'd love to hear from other women who have had a different experience in this endeavor. It's just what happened to me, and I don't see what I could have done to prevent it--short of not exercising until he was a year old, I mean.

Anonymous said...

I exercised while nursing and suffered from low supply issues, and worked with a lactation consultant to get my supply up. Try taking 3 fenugreek pills along with 3 blessed thistle pills 3 times a day. It's the same thing that is in Mother's Milk tea, and my lactation consultant recommended it to me to help increase my milk supply. You can buy it at a GNC or a Vitamin Shoppe. There is also a prescription, Reglan, that will increase your milk supply, which I took also. Since I had PPD, the Reglan made it worse, but it did great things to get my milk supply up. Try calling your OB or a lactation consultant they might be able to help you out.

Courtney said...

I've had three kids and three different experiences with it. With my first, I didn't have any problems, lost weight really quickly and was running more than I had ever run in my life.

With my second I also didn't have any problems nursing, I ran even more than before, but didn't loose any weight until after I stopped nursing and had to do WW.

My third, I kept trying to get back into running but couldn't find my stride, had issues with my milk until I stopped worry about how much I ate. It got better after a while, but I lost my milk when he was 6 months. I had postpartum depression and the hormone imbalance was throwing me off.

My first suggestion would be to make sure you are eating enough, including enough fat and drinking enough water. Try for 1/2 gallon a day at least.

Every person and every pregnancy is different. You can't predict what will happen.

You look AWESOME for someone who has a 3 month old in the pic btw!

Alicia said...

I don't have anything to add, it seems like it changes from baby to baby. I started training for a marathon when by baby was 5 months old and trained until I ran the marathon in October. My milk supply was fine. I lost a lot of weight too even though I didn't worry about what I ate (with my first child I didn't lose any weight until after I stopped nursing). I tried to drink a lot of water. I did worry about losing my milk, and for one week it seemed like it diminished a little, but then it came back. I fed my baby before running, and usually after as well. It did help, however, that she was starting to eat more solids at the time I was in the high mileage training.

Good luck!!

Run Mommy said...

Wow! First of all - well done for both running marathons and looking fantastic when you have four children! Excellent work. Also, I had a hard time nursing while running. My doctor also said it was because the lactic acid in your body can make the milk taste funny so the little man might not like it. I also had supply issues so it got to be challanging to make sure I didn't run too close to a feeding. Eventually I gave up at around 7 or 8 months. (both times). It is tought but better than your are sane and strong to chase down four little people! Well done.

rebecca said...

I don't have a suggestion, just wanted to say "Hello, Jamie!"

Jamie said...

Thank you, thank you, thank you for all the great suggestions!! All of your suggestions have been really helpful. I've been really downing the tea, drinking more water, and I bought some Fenugreek. I have already noticed a difference.
It is so nice to know there are women out there who are going through/have gone through the same thing as I am.

Nikkei said...

I started training for my first marathon when my third child was 6 months old. She refused to take any bottles, so I was nervous about it at first, but I didn't have any problems. She nursed during all of my weeks of training. I finally weaned her about 6 months after the marathon because I was several weeks pregnant with my fourth child. I didn't drink much fluid while training in the beginning, but when I started running longer than 10 miles, I would liberally use sport drinks like Gatorade right before and right after my runs-and I'd drink water during the runs. The biggest impact that nursing while training seemed to have was on my body mass. I can never lose that last 10 pounds until after I stop producing milk, so I had an extra 10 pounds to carry during the marathon. My fourth baby is 2 months old now, and I hope to start running again in a week or two or three (it's hard to find time). I don't know how my milk production will fare this time, but since I've been either pregnant or nursing or both for almost three years now, I wouldn't mind weaning this baby sooner rather than later as long as he tolerates formula and the bottle. I hope you'll be able to nurse your baby as long as you'd like. Good luck!