Exercise Post Pregnancy

Before I write anything this morning, I just have to comment on the TRAGIC events in Sandy Hook, CT. I am still completely heart broken & cannot stop thinking about what happened. As a new Mom it has hit me HARD. Every thought I have is encompassed by thoughts of those families who lost their innocent, young children. It literally rips my heart in two. Every time I look at Gabriella I tear up because of HOW lucky I am to have her & how devastated (& that’s an under statement) I would be if ANYTHING happened to her. Last night I could not sleep because I couldn’t stop thinking about the shootings. It just tears me up. G would wake up to feed & I would just hold her tight and cry because of how much this little lady means to me. All I want to say is hold your loved ones tight, tell them how much you love them…not just in light of these events but always. I don’t think anyone will be able to move on from this HORRIBLE event for a very long time. I know that my whole heart, prayers & thoughts are with those families who lost loved ones. I really cannot even imagine.

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Good Morning!

Hope everyone is off to a great start! I cannot believe that it is LESS than a week until Christmas & in a week I will be OLD…just kidding. I will be 26..does that make me out of my mid 20s? It doesn’t right?! 26 is TOTALLY still MID 20s. Yep, I’m sticking with it. πŸ™‚

So yesterday I had my six week appointment with my OB-GYN. Hard to believe it’s been six weeks! This was just the standard appointment that every post pregnancy woman has- to check on how you are doing and to make sure everything is heeled and that your bleeding stopped. The doctor said I was good to go & no need to do anymore follow ups regarding post pregnancy- just have to go back in March for my standard annual woman’s exam. (good times πŸ˜‰ )

When he asked me how I was doing, I replied ‘great! & that I had actually started running (well, more jogging for the first week) 2 weeks after I had Gabriella. At first I thought he might of yelled at me & said it was too soon, since six weeks is typically how long you are supposed to wait, but he just said ‘that’s awesome! & if you were up for it, then good for you.’

Good to know he didn’t think I was crazy πŸ˜‰

The only reason that I did start running so soon was because of the easy labor & delivery that I had. It was really all thanks to G! She is the one who made it all happen. I was able to start my first workout (weights & walking) two days after having her. I started out walking, then after two weeks of just walking I couldn’t take it anymore….running was calling my name πŸ™‚

Throughout my whole pregnancy I worked out & I can tell you now that I believe it had a HUGE effect on how well my labor went.
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Hard to believe that was me just a few short months ago!

I actually worked out (including running, elliptical, stair master, & lifting) up until the day I had her. Craig & I went running the day before we went into the hospital, and it was one of my favorite runs ever. I kept telling him that once we had her he could tell her how the three of us went running when I was 9+ months pregnant πŸ™‚

The first trimester was HARD – I was EXHAUSTED the entire time. It was BAD. I mean I was in bed by 7pm almost every night, the sun was still shining when I would go to sleep, but I couldn’t keep my eyes open for the life of me. (& the smell of coffee made me want to vomit. ew.) But I would just go to the gym on my lunch break, when I actually felt awake….one of the very few times of day πŸ˜‰

Once I got past that first trimester, I was back to my old self- up at 5am to head to the gym for an hour. That hour is always just a time I could clear my head & enjoy my time with my little girl πŸ™‚ It’s funny because she actually came out still on my gym schedule. EVERY day around 4am (because of the time change) she was up & ready to go for the day…we couldn’t get her back to sleep no matter how hard we tried. Craig realized that she must still be on my gym schedule. πŸ™‚

I can honestly tell you that I am SO GLAD I kept up with my workouts. Not only for my own sanity, but also because of baby weight. I gained a total of about 22lbs, and lost it all within the first week after having her. And it wasn’t just ‘luck’- it was because I kept up with the gym.

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(8 months pregnant)

Now that I am 6 weeks post pregnancy I’m back to my old self. I’m honestly amazed that I didn’t lose my strength or speed. You know what else? Running with a stroller has made me even faster. When I go running now without the stroller (when Craig is on Daddy duty πŸ™‚ ) I can rock out some miles! …and my average mile pace has dropped pretty significantly.

Now I’m actually training for a few races coming up- I’m thinking of doing a marathon in February. Still debating a few things, like if it will work out with other plans we have in the upcoming months, but I’m really looking forward to my training runs πŸ™‚ (I’m actually about to head out for one as soon as I finish this post!)

This isn’t a post to brag about how well I’m doing post pregnancy. Trust me, it’s NOT that at all. It’s a post to tell those considering getting pregnant to NOT stress about baby weight. I know I did. Before I got pregnant that was one of my fears- that I would gain a ton of weight. I know that sounds selfish, but I’m just being honest. I would NEVER do anything to harm my baby, or not eat enough, I was just worried how my body would react to pregnancy.

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(8 months pregnant)

I know some women have terrible morning sickness, or are not allowed to exercise during pregnancy. But if you can keep up with your workout routine, I would definitely suggest it! Not only did it help me with my labor & delivery, but it help with my sanity πŸ˜‰ …and I know my husband appreciated that πŸ™‚

Now the best part of my runs are when I get to run with Gabriella. As I run I just stare at her & smile…and sometimes I sing to her as I’m running, but I swear she covers her ears. Poor girl has to deal with my terrible singing πŸ˜‰

OH, and I just realized I need to do a post about how my Crohn’s disease was during my pregnancy & now post pregnancy- I’ll have to do that in my next post!

Have a great day…and call your family members and tell them you love them!

Labor Story- Part 2

FINALLY finishing this labor story, sorry about the delay! I actually got a few orders for the items that I made for Craig’s Christmas party & an event on Saturday that I’m bringing samples to…so it’s been busy in this house πŸ™‚

Anyways, back to where I left off. This is long & not many pictures until the end…so I suggest grabbing a snack, or a glass of wine..mmmm how delicious a glass of wine sounds right now πŸ˜‰ Now there are some details that may be a bit TMI, but not too bad, I promise πŸ™‚

…my water broke at 11:45am. Such an odd feeling. I mean it really is like you are peeing yourself, but you can’t stop it. You know when you need to pee, you can hold it, or even mid pee you can stop. Well not when your water breaks. There is no stopping it. It’s not like movies either…there is no huge gush (well, mine wasn’t)- it was a steady stream that lasts until the baby comes out. It’s the weirdest feeling…but I’m glad I got to experience it. I didn’t think I would since I was induced, I thought the doctor would have to break it.

Around 12:15pm the anesthesiologists came in. There was the actual doctor, and she had a medical student who was in his senior year. He was going to be doing my epidural while she watched. I know you may be thinking that I was crazy for allowing a student do the epidural, but honestly I didn’t. Not one bit. I just wanted the drugs πŸ˜‰ Also, he was a senior student about to become a ‘real’ doctor anyways…and I felt very comfortable with both of them. He didn’t seem nervous one bit, and I was NOT his first ‘try’ at an epidural.

As I said in the first post, the epidural was the part that scared me the MOST. So I did EXACTLY what they told me. You have to sit a certain way, and you HAVE to hold very still. Most of the time spent is setting up everything for your epidural (like finding the spot on your back where you will have the needle, cleaning the spot, etc). You kind of sit leaning forward and they give you a pillow to hold. You wrap your hands around that & hold still. They give you a numbing shot before the real needle. The numbing shot hurts worse that the epidural needle & the numbing shot really is NOT that bad…seriously! Once they start the epidural you will feel tingly in your legs- like how it feels when your arm or leg falls asleep. That’s usually a sign that it’s working. Once the epidural is in, they lay you back & you just sit there for 15 minutes while the medicine sets in. After about 2 minutes you notice that you can’t really feel your legs anymore…and let me tell you it’s AMAZING. πŸ˜€

BUT…here’s the thing. My first epidural didn’t take. Yep, you read that right. Epidural #1= no good. :/ Once they had finished everything & told me to lay down, they were like ‘ok, so you should be feeling the medicine now, you should NOT be feeling any contractions.’ I was like ‘umm, I am still feeling EVERYTHING & I really need to pee, so I think I’m just going to walk over to the bathroom right now.’ They started freaking out & said I was not allowed to get up because my legs will be numb. I just said honestly my legs are not numb right now, I am still feeling every freaking contraction & I WILL be getting up to pee. And that was that. I got up, no numbing & in pretty extreme pain. They called the doctor back in and we started the epidural process over again.

Now I can’t say that it was in any way fun getting the second epidural, but it wasn’t bad only because I was already numb from the first time. But the doctor told me that things like that (where it didn’t take the first time) happen randomly. I wasn’t mad one bit, I just wanted the drugs because the pain was kicking my butt & I was getting to be a little bit of a you- know -what πŸ˜‰

The second epidural took, and boy let me tell you…WONDERFUL πŸ˜€ I couldn’t wipe the smile off my face. Haha! It does make you a little loopy in the beginning- like a little buzz from alcohol- but I was having fun! (having fun while in labor, sounds like an oxymoron! lol!)

My parents & Craig’s parents came in to say hi after I got my epidural to see how things were going, and we talked for a bit. It was then just a matter of time!

Around 2pm the nurses came in & said ‘try to get some rest before pushing happens.’ I just looked at them like they were crazy…sleep?!! Seriously!? I’m about to push a baby out, there is no way I was getting sleep! πŸ™‚ Instead I turned on the tv & we were watching Everybody Loves Raymond, then the Ellen show. <- LOVE her…great for some laughs before pushing!

Then at 3pm my Mom came in for the final time just to see me & give me a hug. She wanted to ‘see how her baby was.’ πŸ™‚ I told her as she was walking out to tell the nurses that I was getting that feeling that I felt like I needed to poop. (sorry, tmi, but just telling you the truth!) That’s what they say- is that when it feels like you need to poop, that’s typically when it means it’s time to push!

At 3:15pm the nurse came in to see how I was doing, and she took a look down there & said ‘yep! it’s time to go!’ They were going to call the doctor in, (he was across the street at my OB GYN’s office) & in the mean time we were going to do a ‘practice push’ so that I knew what to expect. My main nurse was going to let me know when I was having a contraction & then I would be instructed to push through the contraction. Well, as we were about to start the practice push, she looked ‘down there’ again & said ‘STOP!’ Immediately I freaked out & was like OH MY GOSH, what is going on with my child?! But I had to stop because her head was literally RIGHT THERE! No practice push for me, instead it was go time as soon as the doctor arrived.

My doctor walked in around 3:40pm & at 3:45pm it was the REAL DEAL. Time to push. So I won’t go into a bunch of detail here, but I watched the entire birth. It was the COOLEST thing ever. I know, it sounds gross…if you have never experienced it…and if someone were to tell me that they watched their child’s birth BEFORE I had G, I would of thought they were insane. But now I can tell you…best experience EVER. Now I truly know why they say ‘the miracle of birth.’ Because every birth really is a miracle!

The whole birth took about 10 pushes, if that. She was ready to go, and I was ready to push!

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Meeting my girl ❀

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Our first family photo ❀

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After her first bath πŸ™‚

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Both families after her birth ❀

Hope this wasn’t too long, I’m just glad I finally finished it! πŸ™‚

Labor- Part 1

So about that little thing called labor……

The first thing I want to say is that no matter HOW much you read, hear stories, and Google different subjects, I can almost guarantee you that labor will be nothing like what you expect.

I’m sure you have heard the common saying, that you can never ‘plan’ your delivery…and to make sure you are open to the idea that it will NOT go according to your ‘plan.’

Of course the whole experience is a WONDERFUL experience because you are welcoming a new little LIFE into the world!

Here is how my labor went….

I knew from the beginning of my pregnancy that I would be induced. The reason for this is because I have Crohn’s disease and apparently if you go past your due date it can effect the disease.

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(that’s me at 39 weeks- almost time to go in to be induced…please ignore the toilet paper in the back ground..ha!)

Now I had heard MANY stories of women being induced- the good & the horror stories. To be honest, I feel like I’m a bit odd because I never got nervous about labor/ delivery. I really don’t know WHY, since it’s kind of a big deal…& something that you have never experiencedΒ  before, but I just never got those nervous feelings.Β I think I was just SO excited to meet little G that I really didn’t care how she got here, I just wanted to meet her ASAP!

Craig & I went in on November 4th to start the whole process. Lucky for us we were able to watch the Ravens game at 1pm, and then we had to be at the hospital at 5pm. It was a win-win πŸ˜‰ (& yep, the Ravens did win that game…we figured that was a good sign of things to come)

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(yep, Ravens fan from the start!)

Once we got checked in, the nurse went over the whole process & what we should expect. Now this could be a REALLY long post about my labor, but I’m going to try to just cut to the main points.

Around 6pm she said I would be starting the miso pill (misoprostol) to induce labor. This is a little tiny pill (about the size of aspirin) that is inserted UNDER your cervix. All I’m going to say about this pill is OW! Not that the pill itself hurt, but the process of putting it in my body hurt like HELL. Once it was in though there were no side effects, and I would not of even known it was there.

After the pill is inserted they check you every hour to see if you are dialated. I went into the hospital not dialted at all, and about 80% effaced. After three hours if my contractions were not too close together then they would insert another pill. (lucky me πŸ˜‰ )

Really the time was just a waiting process, so Craig & I were just going to watch the Sunday night game. Welllllll we had some surprise visitors….Craig’s parents!!!! My parents were already down in Orlando just waiting to head to the hospital & Craig’s parents had planned a trip later in November to come & meet her. But as I was speaking to the nurse, they came in to surprise us. πŸ™‚ They didn’t want to miss G’s big entrance into the world! It was an awesome surprise & I’m truly so happy they were there!

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(both of our families)

We actually had the BEST pre-delivery experience. It was AWESOME having both of our parents there, we all just sat around in my labor room & watched football, caught up on life, and laughed & laughed. I would not of changed a thing!

Now the fun part, I’m REALLY going to sum this up…because I doubt you want to hear hour by hour details πŸ˜‰ So I wasn’t dialating AT ALL, but I was having contractions apart 2-3 minutes apart- so I couldn’t have another miso pill & they didn’t want to start the pitocin if I wasn’t dialated.

My doctor decided to go ahead and start the pitocin around 1am November 5th. So that’s what we did….and still NOTHING.

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(that would be me…just waiting…and waiting for SOMETHING to happen)

At 9am a new nurse came in to see how things were ‘progressing.’ ….and NOTHING. Not dialated at all. :/ At this point I was looking for anything that could help push this labor along- they sat I could try bouncing on a birthing ball. (I just used a regular exercise ball) So I sat there bouncing away & I also did a TON of squats. I swear I got the biggest leg workout in the day of delivery πŸ˜‰

Around 10am the doctors that were going to do my epidural came into talk to me because that was the part that I was the MOST nervous about. I had heard HORROR stories of epidurals gone wrong…and I kept thinking ‘oh gosh, I’m going to be paralyzed after all of this.’Β  The doctors were AWESOME & very calming….I knew there was no way in heck I was NOT getting an epidural, I just needed to calm down about it.

Around 10:30am I started getting SUPER painful contractions. I called the nurse in & talked to her…asked if it was too soon for an epidural. She wanted to check me first, and said I was about 1cm. So I was progressing, but they don’t recommend an epidural until about 4-5cm. I just said ok, and figured I would tough out the pain.

At this point I thought I was a HUGE chicken because I was complaining about this pain & I was only 1cm?! Well at 11:30am, we called the nurse in again because I didn’t care I wanted the epidural. I was IN PAIN. & this wasn’t ‘normal pain’…this was real.

The nurse was kind of hesitant about it, only because she was like…you are BARELY dialated & you want to go ahead with the epidural?! (again…felt like a huge chicken) I asked what other options we had…and she mentioned that we could just call it a day & HEAD HOME since there was no progressing & WAIT FOR THINGS TO HAPPEN NATURALLY. I looked up at Craig & he was about to LOSE it.

I calmly asked the nurse to please give us a few minutes to talk alone. Craig & I were both in the same boat….I mean we had already come so far & the thought of ‘packing it up & heading home’ after all of this made me want to cry.

AS we were talking at 11:45am MY WATER BROKE! Naturally!!!!!!!!!

I immediately starting crying because I was somewhat overwhelmed with thoughts- SO excited, but also just overwhelming. Craig was running around the room, kissing me on my head & just saying “Babe, this is what we wanted! This is what we wanted!!”

She was telling us that she was coming out today & there was NO ‘heading home & waiting it out….’ This girl had other plans…

…..I will continue this story in another post as it’s getting pretty long πŸ™‚

I want to leave you with a cute picture, here is a sneak peak at our newborn pictures:

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