Thursday, December 5, 2013

Starting Over

Before I tell you what's going on with me I'd like to take a minute to give a shoutout to a reader Alex who is running the London Marathon in 2014 and raising money for Asthma UK. It's a great cause so please go visit his site and donate! Thanks Alex for getting out there and raising money for such a great cause! Okay back to the regular blog post...

So I'm one month into life with a newborn and I've come to one conclusion: Mom's are superheros. Seriously I have all the support in the world including an amazing husband that often works from home, both sets of grandparents within 6 miles that often bring us meals, my sister constantly offering to babysit, etc. Somehow this is still the hardest thing I've ever done, but also the most rewarding. I love my little girl to pieces!


Okay so back to running topics: I've been trying to get out and start walking. I'm not really cleared to run yet (in 2 weeks I have my follow up appointment with my dr and hopefully then I can). However even walking has been a little hard on me. Don't want to get into the gory details, but it's not asthma related and I'm still healing. However I have gotten out to walk a mile or so almost every day and I'm hoping that I will start slowly running again by Christmas. My asthma has actually been fabulous despite having to cut back on medications because I'm breastfeeding. 

Here's my rough plan to get back into the swing of things:
  1. Walk a mile or more daily until I'm healed enough to run. I have no idea when this will be, but I'm guessing by Christmas.
  2. Do a couch to 5k program. I started an app right before I found out I was pregnant and had to stop running. The app was called Zombies, Run! It's an 8 week 5k program and it plays your music plus has triggers to tell you when to run/walk. In addition there's a story-line going on about zombies that's fun. I love all things zombies  (The Walking Dead and I are close friends) and thought the app was a cute way to get you interested in running so I think I may try it again. It's extra motivation to run when you hear zombies chasing you!
  3. Sign up for some 5k races. I think the best way to stay motivated is to actually run races. I doubt I'll have time to do intricate costumes like I used to but it's still fun to get out there and run with other people. I plan to do 5ks for a while before I jump back into half marathons. 
  4. Sign up for a half marathon. Once I feel comfortable with 5ks again I'll start training for a half and sign up for a fun one. Right now I'm considering Disney Wine and Dine,  Rock n Roll Vegas, and potentially waiting until 2015 for WDW or Princess. 
I feel optimistic that 2014 will be a good year of running for me and I'm excited to start things off as soon as I'm really able to. However, running with a newborn has lots of challenges (especially as a breastfeeding mom)! Here's some I've already figured out (some are obvious, some were unexpected!) and some ideas I have to overcome them:
  • You can't run with babies. I totally thought that I'd buy a jogging stroller and be running around the neighborhood as soon as I could walk again. WRONG. Apparently it's not safe to jog with a baby until they are at least 6 months old, and a lot of doctors recommend waiting a full year. Who knew? I haven't talked to our pediatrician yet about jogging, but I will soon to find out what she recommends for when we can use a jogging stroller. However, in the mean time I plan to try to do my runs/walks around the neighborhood and have my husband watch the baby while I'm out. By running close to home I'll save some time and could be back quickly if he needed me. 
  • Breastfeeding is a huge time commitment. Breastfeeding is incredibly beneficial to babies, but it's also time consuming! One thing I didn't realize before having a baby was that even if you pump ahead of time and choose to give the baby a bottle, you still have to pump again while they eat. So in other words, every time they eat you have to get milk out whether through directly breastfeeding or pumping or else your milk supply will decrease. So that means you can't take a break to go run while she has a bottle. Again, I plan to run near home to help with this one. That way I can feed her right before I leave and as soon as I get back. Also by choosing to run shorter distances for now until she is going longer between feedings will help. 
  • Having a newborn is exhausting. I'm running on fumes most days because our little girl rarely sleeps more than 2-3 hours at a time. It's totally normal, but hard to motivate yourself to get out the door and run when you can't keep your eyes open. To combat this problem I plan to find little ways to motivate myself, like podcasts, the zombie app, etc to keep me wanting to go back out and run. Races also make me excited to run even on my worst day so I hope to do at least one a month!
  • Your body changes drastically. Obviously I've got some extra weight on me, which is a bummer. That means that most of my workout clothes are tight, but luckily I had a few things that were big before that now fit me. What I didn't expect was that my shoe size changed. You guys, I have giant feet. We are talking monster size! Then after the baby I went up at least a full shoe size ( I haven't been fitted yet). My running shoes no longer fit which is a giant bummer because they were brand new! Lucky for me, my mom has a pair that fits me that she doesn't use. They are no where near ideal, but they work for now! I'm hoping santa brings me a good pair of sneakers for christmas! 
So does any one else have any suggestions for overcoming some of the obstacles that come with a newborn? I'll take all the help I can get! 

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

So it's been a while...

Hey guys! I've missed you all! I'm so sorry it's been forever since I last posted. My world has completely changed in just about every way since I last posted. I'll catch you up quickly and maybe I'll do longer posts later about the big life events.

First, I stopped running completely. My OB said I shouldn't be doing anything triggering attacks and EVERYTHING was triggering attacks. This was sooooo not fun for me. That's part of why I fell off the blogging wagon. It was just a bummer to write a running blog when I wasn't allowed to run. Boo!

Second, I got married!!! My husband is absolutely amazing and I couldn't be any happier than I am when I'm with him. Our wedding was August 31st on a rooftop in downtown OKC right around sunset. It was absolutely perfect and I wish I could relive that day over and over again. I am so fortunate to have found him. Here's a few of my favorite pics!




Also in case you didn't notice above, I got freaking gigantic during my pregnancy! haha. I don't like to look at the scale ever, but I gained 60 pounds!! Some of it was water weight (I had massive swelling problems) but some of it was definitely not. Boo! PS: I was 30 weeks at my wedding above and 39 and 2 days when our baby was born.

And finally I had a baby!! Audrey Rei (our beautiful little girl born on November 4th) is finally here! I know everyone thinks their baby is adorable but I'm obsessed with mine, so I apologize in advance for the amount of Audrey pics you will be seeing on the blog. She's 15 days old today and I'm completely attached to her. PS: if you are obsessed with baby pics you should see my instagram. Holy cow I take too many :P


So obviously some big changes in my life huh? Now it's time to get back to running and lose all this baby weight. Any one down for a challenge?? I have to start very slow (I haven't run in months and my asthma is still a little shaky) so I plan to start walking first (we've already done a few) and then start with a couch to 5k program just like I'm brand new to running. If you are thinking about taking up running, now's a great time to do it because we can all be newbies together and stay motivated. If you want to do this with me please comment below! I pinky swear I'll be posting a lot more as I get back into things!

Also I have a daily mile account for tracking my mileage (it's new for my new name/email) that I just started using if you want to follow me or add me as a friend please do!

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Some major life changes


Well the bad news is, I haven't posted in forever. The good news is there's a pretty good reason. Last time I posted I was having a miserable time with my asthma. Constantly short of breath, attacks more often than not, etc. On top of that, I was exhausted all the time. ALL THE TIME. I had absolutely no energy to do anything but lay around. I was also having trouble losing weight. I'd been trying but the extra couple of pounds seemed to be glued to me. I chalked that up to the steroids from all the attacks.

This went on for a couple months and I couldn't understand what was going on. The doctors also weren't being too cooperative in helping, every time I went in to see them I'd get a round of steroids and be sent on my way when I really needed to up my medication.

Fast forward to two weeks ago. I missed my period. (sorry tmi guys!). I miss them often but thought I'd take a pregnancy test just to be sure and it turned out positive. Went to the dr and I did blood work. Also positive. It indicated I was about 5 weeks pregnant. My mind was blown.

Then a week later they did an ultrasound to make sure the baby was okay and to get a more exact due date. Guess what? I wasn't 5 weeks pregnant. I was over FIFTEEN weeks pregnant!! Holy freaking cow.

Around then, Kevin also asked me to marry him. He had been planning on it for a while, but now he didn't want to wait. I couldn't be any luckier than to be marrying my best friend. Throughout this entire experience he's been so sweet and caring, and more importantly level-headed. He's really helped to keep me calm while I was freaking out.

Overall it's been a crazy few weeks, but I couldn't be happier. I'm so so lucky to have a great fiance, wonderful parents close by (on both sides), and to work with Kevin so that he's always there when I'm freaking out or having a bad day. We weren't even remotely planning on this, but I think I'm pretty darn lucky.

I'm sorry if I've been missing messages here and there. I've been more than a little out of touch and pre-occupied lately but I promise to try to update you at least.

our baby - due november
And to show you how crazy fast things have happened, when i first found out my bump could easily be mistaken for a few extra pounds (that's what i thought) been then just 3 weeks later i look like a whale. lol. Before you go warning me about putting on too much weight while pregnant, the doctor says I'm healthy and so is the baby. The way things are growing(where placenta is) and the way my body is shaped i'm just more noticeable than other people might be. 

13 weeks - the week before I found out (super fun run btw- report later)


15 weeks - one week after i first found out

17 weeks!!


Saturday, March 2, 2013

Staying Positive


Lately I've been having a lot of trouble with asthma. I mean A LOT. Before I started running my asthma was in terrible shape. Since then I was able to give up some of my medication and was doing leaps and bounds better. While my asthma never went away or was "cured", I felt like it was finally manageable for this first time.

Fast forward to now and, although I've been denying it, it's clearly out of control again. This year in Oklahoma (where I'm living) we've had some of the worst weather for people with allergies and asthma. The temperature is constantly drastically changing. One day there will be snow on the ground, the next it will be 72 degrees outside. The allergens (pine and grass etc) are at record highs and have been most of this fall/winter. I'm working downtown in area surrounded by smokers, so I'm not exactly getting the cleanest air. I've been under some stress at work, not like run-find-a-corner-and-hide stress, but still enough to wear on me. I don't say these things to "make excuses", simply to explain what I think some of the contributing factors may be.

I've always heard of the "rule of twos" when it comes to asthma and keep it in the back of the mind (although somehow I always change it to the rule of threes! haha). The rule of twos is:


Think in Two's:
  • Take your "quick-relief inhaler" more than two times a week?
  • Awaken at night with asthma more than two times a month?
  • Refill your "quick-relief inhaler" more than two times a year?
If you answered "Yes" to any of these questions, your (or your child's) asthma is NOT UNDER CONTROL. Talk to your doctor about your (or your child's) asthma! 
source 

My answers to those questions:

  • 1-2 times per day (not including for running)
  • a few times per week
  • I don't count this one because I have to take it a lot for running which my doctor's don't count

So obviously things aren't going so hot for me. Above all else it's been incredibly frustrating. I can't do the things I love (running - missing a 5k tonight in fact), I can't sleep well and I'm always tired, and I can't even think straight because I'm dizzy half the time and shaky from my inhaler the other half. I'm trying to get in to see a specialist soon, but I have run out of my usual "tricks" to fix things. 

Anyways, to make a long sob story short, my asthma has been royally sucking lately and I've been throwing myself a bit of a pity party. Recently however, I've been getting some emails from readers saying the sweetest things about how my blog helped them in some way and it's really encouraged me and helped to lift me out of my funk.  I thought since I could use some of my own advice right now, I'd share some tips on staying positive when you are having a bad day/week/month/year:
  • Take time every day to remember things that you are grateful for (maybe even write them down). I may be struggling with asthma, but I have an amazing family and a great guy supporting me through it and I have the best readers in the world who pick me up when I'm down.
  • Find something else to do. This is one I really suck at. I get so fixated on not being able to run (or even to run like I usually can) that I act like it's my entire life. Find a new way to channel your energy for the time being. I plan on trying to do some weight-lifting (since this is something I NEVER work on and it doesn't affect my asthma the way running does) and catching up on some much-needed reading. 
  • Be proactive. Do whatever you can to help yourself get better. That way you are occupying your time with something useful rather than pouting. I'm working on getting in to see a specialist, starting to try (stress the word "try") to eat better, and work on some things around the house to help with asthma (like new pillows!). 
I've got a few more ideas on the running with asthma 101 page if you haven't read it already. 

Anyways, those are my tips. What are yours? I could use 'em!