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Old 01-14-2010, 08:42 AM   #1
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? For runners who breastfeed

I posted this in the bf forum but there isn't a lot of traffic over there like here to find the runners

Do you do anything special to keep your supply up or does running not affect you? Seems that every time I go back to running I start to struggle with my supply and I'm one who usually makes tons of milk. I still eat and drink lots of water to make up for the extra workout but it doesn't really help.
Weight loss I make sure isn't fast and I eat more to make up for the lost calories. (My reasons for running is pleasure, stress relief and I just enjoy it.. not really for weight loss.)

Right now I'm eating the lactation cookies but I'm growing a tad tired of them after 4 batches.

So any successful runners and breastfeeders?
Running now is only a few miles a day but will be about 4-5 a day soon. Think I'll be ok with that much? I'm trying to get back on track for a 1/2 marathon in 2 months or so.

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Old 01-14-2010, 10:29 AM   #2
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Re: ? For runners who breastfeed

I never had issues as long as I stayed hydrated before, during, and after. But I don't run everyday. I run every third one.
Dunno. It might be your body's natural way of telling you it's too much to run & BF at the same time? Like it can't do that much at the same time?
Dunno. I run for recreation. For alone time. I don't have a set distance or time or goal. Just run for fun.
Maybe others who run more than me would know more.
I usually run 2-3 miles every third day or so. I do walk daily tho. Not as far, would take too long!
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Old 01-17-2010, 08:15 AM   #3
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Re: ? For runners who breastfeed

I run a lot and have BF my baby for 11 months now. I know that if I didn't drink a lot of water my supply went way down- it still does even now that I make very little milk. If I pumped before one day and then after the next (or a week later) the amounts that I got before and after we totally different! I asked a lactation consultant about this and she said that it wasn't that my body was reabsorbing the milk or anything, but that it was using all of my water to hydrate my body. On any run over 4 miles I would bring a water bottle and drink the entire thing while running and then have water before and after as well. I am not nearly as good at this as I was when my LO was tiny, but still try to do my best. I try to run 5 days a week, some days if I pumped before and didn't get anything and if I was tired, I just took the day off as a sign that my body needed it and went for a walk or something less stressful instead. I have heard that momma's who lose weight too quickly also can have a reduction in milk, maybe this is a part of it as well. At 5 months pp I probably weighed less than when I was 3 months preggo.

It can be done! I have done a few half marathons, triathlons and did the majority of my friend's training for a marathon with her- listen to your body, eat lots of healthy, fiber filled foods and DRINK DRINK DRINK!
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Old 01-17-2010, 08:20 AM   #4
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Re: ? For runners who breastfeed

Hey mama! Congrats on wanting to really get back to running. That is awesome. I started running again when my LO was 4 weeks old. I was running 3 miles at that point, usually 3-4 times a week. I BF her until she was 14 mo old. I ran a half marathon when she was 10 mo old and my supply never suffered even when I was doing a 10 mile run. I hydrated like crazy while I was running and afterwards. I stopped BF'ing in August and then ran a full marathon in October. Hopefully you can get it figured out. I didn't do anything different really just making sure I drank tons of water and ate healthy. Good luck!
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Old 01-17-2010, 09:42 AM   #5
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Re: ? For runners who breastfeed

I just drank INSANE amounts of water! And I drank some Emergen-C mixed with water occasionally, that helped too.
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Old 01-17-2010, 12:34 PM   #6
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Re: ? For runners who breastfeed

I ran a full marathon when DS was 10 mos old. I started training when he was 4 mos old and ran 20+ miles a week. The longer my runs became the more i saw a decrease of my milk supply. At 10 mos old my son weaned himself. He REFUSED to breastfeed and would scream if i tried. Then i realized i basically had no milk left. But that was around the time i was running an INSANE amount of miles because the marathon was like a week away. I drank A TON of water and lactating tea and ate a ton of oatmeal but i think once you get up to that many miles theres really nothing you can do. I was just thankful i made it to 10 mos successfully breastfeeding him. You should be fine as long as you drink a ton and dont get down on yourself if you're up 20+ miles a day and see a little decrease. Keep it up Mama! Running is great. It helped so much with my post partum and just makes me a happier person overall. I love it.
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Old 01-17-2010, 12:46 PM   #7
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Re: ? For runners who breastfeed

I was just talking to my friend about this. I am not running right now, but she is, and fenugreek seemed to help (it's an herb). I think you can get it in capsules? I don't know much about it, but a health food store might be able to help. or just google it.
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Old 01-17-2010, 02:38 PM   #8
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Re: ? For runners who breastfeed

Thanks a bunch mamas! It's reassuring to know some of you have run as much as I used to and want to again, and done it successfully with breastfeeding. I'm so excited to be back at it but it's tough when I worry about my supply and can feel myself holding back. Kwim?
I'll be sure to drink a lot before and after my runs and continue with the cookies if need be.
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Old 01-18-2010, 06:34 AM   #9
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Re: ? For runners who breastfeed

How old is your baby? I think having a firmly established supply is key.

I trained for two races pretty seriously in my BF life... and my 21 month old DS is still nursing away. I never did more than 45 miles a week, though, and that was training for the Army 10-Miler... I'm a "run smarter, not longer" sort of girl I get bored. If you see a drop in your supply, try to limit yourself to only one really long run a week?

Good luck! Running, especially by myself after having a little one, is such a pleasure.
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