My Biggest Challenges

My Biggest Challenges

With my big 20 mile run just 2 days away I have been trying to prepare myself mentally and physically for what’s in store. Training for a marathon with a 9 week-old has definitely had its share of challenges. I thought I would share a few of these and also mention how I’m working through them…

1.) Lack of sleep
This one is huge. I have always been the kind of person who NEEDS 8 hours of sleep. Even back in college when it seemed like everyone else survived off 4 hours a night and then crashed on weekends- not me. We had races on weekends and early morning runs so I went to bed early! Now skipping ahead to having kids, I am obviously waking up several times a night to nurse. With my first three, it was not too difficult because I would just nurse and then sleep in later. I didn’t have any children in school so we could all sleep in/ nap- whatever. With baby #4, I need to get up first so I can run, get older kids ready for school and I do try to make time for a little nap when I can. I am finding myself going to bed earlier and in many cases- as soon as the kids are asleep.

Right now Ashton has a 5 hour stretch, nurses, has a 3 hour stretch, nurses, 2 hour stretch, nurses, and one hour more stretch of sleep. So… timing my early morning runs is a little difficult. This leads into my 2nd biggest challenge right now:

2.) Nursing a newborn and running long distance
First let me say, that it CAN be done but the timing can be a little tricky! I’ve tried the waking up to nurse which hasn’t always worked out. It worked for my third because she was older (9 mos.) when I started early morning running. It’s been a little more challenging with Ashton but I think it is just because he is so young. A 9 week-old is A LOT different than a 9 month-old! Their schedule is so much less predictable! I’ve tried pumping then running which has also had mixed results. I have not found one sure fire way that works but I just keep trying. My main goal is that he eats right before I run so that he is full and satisfied. This makes it easier on whoever is brave enough to watch 4 kids while I run! (Typically my husband or mother-in-law.) My other main goal is that he will eat or I will pump enough so that I am comfortable for my long run. I am getting used to my milk coming in while I’m running. During the LR Half Marathon it was around mile 6. During my 17 mile run last week it was at mile 12. I am still not quite sure how I will handle this at Boston. (Which is 4 weeks from today!) I am considering using a hand pump right before or during?? I need to see how my 20 mile run this week goes…

Today I was supposed to go 4 miles. I went to bed WAY too late last night so I just couldn’t make myself get out of bed for 4 on my own. So now I am waiting until John gets home. 5:00 is NOT an ideal time for me to run but it’s what I must do today. So now I need to work out dinner for everyone…

~Runner Mom

2 thoughts on “My Biggest Challenges

  1. I pumped at the start of Boston in ’09 and I’ll be doing it again this year 🙂 Will your family be there with you? Hubby & baby met me at the finish last time so I could nurse right away! Though like you said it’s easier with an older baby rather than a new baby.

  2. Yes, my husband and son will be at the finish. I’ve decided to just pump right before. I think I will be able to handle the time away ok without stopping during the race. We’ll see how it goes… 🙂

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

CommentLuv badge