This past Saturday marked 8 weeks since T entered the world. Eight weeks since labor and birth and I can’t imagine not having this little man in our lives. He’s amazing. E’s amazing as a big sister. I just love watching them together and we’re loving being a family of four. I could go on and on but I’m not writing this post to gush about the kiddos.
I wanted to write a little bit about my post-partum experience with baby #2, how everything has been this time around. Really I want to skip ahead to getting the okay from my midwives to workout and how that has been going but I figure I should hit on the whole healing thing before I get to that. First, a little bit about my labors and births for comparison. With both babies I was on heparin, was Group B Strep positive, and was seeing midwives for my primary prenatal care. With E my water broke before contractions started, labor last for 29 hours, two doses of antibiotics (with a reaction called Red Man Syndrome to the first), epidural at 24 hours of labor, pushed for an hour and 15 minutes or so, and I had a small tear that required a stitch or two. With T the midwife broke my water while I was pushing, labor was three hours and 20 minutes, did not received any antibiotics or an epidural, pushed for maybe 15 minutes, and did not tear at all. Quite a bit different but both very positive birth experiences, for which I am extremely grateful!
I was very lucky and healed quickly after both deliveries. I was never in extreme pain and my bleeding tapered off to a normal period-like amount by the next day in both cases. Speaking of which, the post-partum bleeding after T last for about five weeks (spotting until that point, not consistent bleeding). I think I only bled for about two weeks after E. I actually felt pretty physically normal within days of both deliveries, though I do think that happened more quickly after T because I didn’t have any tears. This time around I did have some soreness deep in my lower abdomen (not constant, just when I moved now and then) that I don’t recall having after E. I guess I am just one of the lucky mamas that physically bounces back very fast after having a baby. Then, of course, you have to consider the emotional hurricane that comes along with the flood of post-partum hormones. The post-partum period can be a tough time emotionally and there were definitely times where my emotions got the best of me. I was up and down for the first couple weeks following both babies – there were tears over things that were probably not tear-worthy – but since I knew what to expect the second time around it seemed a little easier if only because I knew what was happening and that it was normal so I was able to just accept it.
Now, onto what I really want to talk about! I went in for a follow-up visit with my midwives and got the go ahead to start working out at six weeks post-partum (two weeks ago). I was pumped! Though life with two kiddos is pretty active, I was missing being purposefully active and working out. It’s good to get that sweat flowing! It is so nice to be back to it and I have been getting in some kind of workout, even if it’s just a couple of sets of squats and push ups in the evening, at least five times a week for the past two weeks.
Now I worked out until quite close to the end of my pregnancy but, man, I feel like I have lost so much strength and power in the last 2.1/2-3 months that I haven’t really been exercising. I feel almost like I am starting from scratch again. I suppose I am in a way with my core! Since getting the go-ahead to workout I have been working on rebuilding my core from the inside out (see this set of exercises).and focusing on strength training and stretching. I really want to get my power and flexibility back! Since I have not yet been back to the gym (babies have to be three months old to go to kids klub, so my membership is on hold), I have been working out at home, mainly doing HIIT workouts or Jillian Michaels’ videos from the BeFit YouTube channel . Both are great at home workouts because they usually require very little equipment and since we got a new TV for Christmas I can actually access YouTube from my TV using the remote, making it super convenient. This Thursday I will be starting a Body Rock 30 Day Challenge with a friend. I did this challenge in the summer of 2013 and had good results in regards to improved strength and muscle tone, so I wanted to do it again. Luckily I have a friend who is doing it along with me and that I can report back to, keeping my accountable. I’m pretty excited because PB is building me a Lebert Equalizer out of PVC! I can’t wait to use it! I want to build more muscle so my body can amp up the calorie torch-age and I can, hopefully, get closer to my pre-pregnancy weight.
Right now, I’m still 14 pounds above my pre-pregnancy weight and I would be lying if I said I was happy with that. It’s kind of disappointing to have so far to go when the weight came off so quickly and easily after E. Granted after E I still had work to do to get toned up and my post-pregnancy body was different than my pre-pregnancy body even at the same weight but I was back down to my pre-baby weight quickly. Heck, eight days after E was born I was only four pounds from my pre-pregnancy weight. Not the case the second time around! While I am concerned about my weight, the shape of my body (jiggly belly is jiggly), and how my clothes fit, I am trying to be kind to myself and I am sure to never say anything negative about my body in front of E. For her sake, and my own, I accept my body at every stage and will embrace it – after all it created these two beautiful little people that I love so incredibly much. So, while it would certainly be nice to lose the rest of this baby weight, my goals have less to do with my pants size and much more to do with feeling strong, fit, and healthy.
And of course, I have to mention running… While I can’t wait to get back to it, I have yet to go out on a run. Running during the week with no gym access and two little ones just isn’t happening and the weather lately has made me less than excited about getting out on the weekends. I really am looking forward to getting back to running again but I’m okay with waiting for now; I’ll ease back into it soon! On a day when it wasn’t too cold, I did manage to bundle up both kids and load them into the double-stroller for a hilly three mile walk. It’s a start!
So, there you have it! My post partum experience with baby #2, from healing to HIIT!