March 3, 2010
In the past week I've gotten three or four emails asking about the very same topic: running while nursing. It's not the most fascinating of things, and I'm by no means an expert on the subject matter, so I'll keep my tips and advice brief:
1. If you're a nursing mother, and you decide to go for a run, please, please, please double up on the sports bras. Otherwise you'll become a spectacle, and I know from previous personal experience that SPECTACLE + INSANE HORMONES = INVOLVEMENT FROM THE COPS. Every single time.
2. If you increase your mileage and you find that your milk supply takes a sudden, drastic drop, then you're probably not eating enough. I've found--and I'm 100% serious here--that eating three Hostess Golden Cupcakes every day (one after each meal), keeps my weight steady and my milk supply abundant.
3. No, number 2 was definitely not a joke.
4. Personally, running and nursing both tire me out. When you add them together, I'm extra, crazy worn out. And then, if you sprinkle in an almost 5-year-old son, a job with lots of night meetings, and a husband who spilled a 20-pound bag of bird seed on our kitchen floor at 7:35 this morning, it can only mean one thing: I'M SO TIRED THAT I MIGHT PUNCH YOU IN THE FACE FOR FUN.
So. Go easy on yourself. Take lots of rest days, incorporate lots of short runs into your schedule, and if you absolutely must, stop in the middle of your workout, climb up on a park bench, and proclaim the following message to your entire neighborhood: I'M TRYING TO DO IT ALL AND NOT A SINGLE ONE OF YOU APPRECIATES ME! You'll feel so renewed.
5. I don't know about you, but nursing makes me unbelievably stupid, so pay attention to your surroundings, look both ways before you cross the street, don't accidentally fall off a cliff like some dumb-butted cartoon coyote.
6. Always carry you cell phone if you're a nursing mom who's running. That way you can call your husband at the start of the third mile and be like, "Do you have any idea how lucky you are to be married to me? Do you really appreciate the fact that I'm not letting myself go? I feel like you don't love me lately."
7. Drink lots of water--maybe two or three liters a day. Coffee doesn't count, Diet Coke doesn't count, and red wine probably shouldn't count, but it does. If you're Mormon like me, the red wine thing will do you no good--so if you absolutely need a buzz, I suggest taking three multi-vitamins, two Benadryl, and smacking yourself over the head with a medium-sized frying pan five or six times in a row. You'll be stealing stops signs and whizzing in your neighbors' bushes before you know it.
8. You should probably carry pepper spray if you're a nursing mom who's running--after all, there are many innocent people in the world who could use an occasional burst of fire in the eyes. It's an easy way to help them remember that you're under appreciated by every single person on the face of this hope-forsaken planet.
9. Get some good shoes. Every runner should have good shoes, whether you're nursing or not.
10. Put some Britney on your iPod--always a good reminder that you've got your mothering shiz in better order than at least one woman in the world.
So, there you have it. Ten tips for nursing moms who run. No go get 'em, ladies!