Thursday, September 15, 2011

8-wks post-partum: Falling Off the Bandwagon

In case you're new to reading my postpartum posts or you forgot the original plan, here it is:

Nutrition-wise I am slowly working my way back to The Endo Diet. I will be sticking only with my stevia & agave nectar. I'm still avoiding all soy & corn. I will, of course, be re-tested for all foods, once my hormone levels start to return back to normal. The reality is: I still have endometriosis, PCOS & an increased risk for Type 2 Diabetes. Eating this way is a lifestyle for me, not a diet.

Fitness-wise I will be slowly working up to a regular workout routine. For now, breast-feeding is my main form of burning calories!

1 Week Post-Partum: slow to moderate walking everyday (or most days) as I feel up to it strength-wise

4 Weeks Post-Partum: begin doing pelvic tilts & leg slides and gradually increasing to crunches and/or sit-ups, as my abdominal gap starts to close.

6 Weeks Post-Partum: start introducing cardio classes again (such as Zumba/Kickboxing/etc) and begin the C25K running program (as my midwife allows).

3 months Post-Partum: start introducing toning/stretching classes again (such as Yoga)

5 months Post-Partum: start Jillian Michaels' circuit training


Now, here's reality at 8-wks postpartum, LOL...

Nutrition-wise No more elimination diet! Woot Woot! I am back on dairy & gluten. And sugar. Oy. 

Between weeks 6 & 7, I weaned completely. I had tried everything and Baby A would not latch, despite trying every single week. Pumping had become an issue as well, as I wasn't producing enough. 

Here's a recap: Baby A didn't latch right from the beginning. Then when she did latch right, she wouldn't stay on for very long without crying and screaming. My production had always been really low, despite trying everything to amp it up. After 4 weeks of both of us being frustrated & it causing bonding issues, I decided to primarily pump & feed her breastmilk via bottles. Everyone was soooo much happier! Then, I got Vertigo & couldn't pump for almost 24 hrs. I went from producing just enough for her to eat, to producing half of what she needed. Again, I tried everything to amp up my production. Nothing work. Eventually, it started taking me 45 minutes of pumping just to get 1 oz of breastmilk (baby A was eating 3oz per feeding!) To top it off, my electric pump broke. That was the final straw for me.

Not-to-mention, I had/have many strikes against me. 

  1. Baby A came out not breathing, so I didn't get to hold her for the first hour. So, she obviously didn't nurse. So, I missed out on the hormonal surge.
  2. She didn't latch right for the first 2 weeks, which frustrated her & caused her to eventually not want to latch at all (and she still won't... I just tried again last week).
  3. I have PCOS, which messes with your hormonal makeup and causes milk production issues, as I had experienced the entire 6-7 weeks.
  4. I got the Vertigo, which decreased my milk production even more.
  5. I had part of the placenta still inside me & it didn't exit my body until Baby A was 3 weeks old. That also messed me up hormonally & affected my milk production.
Anyway, all of that was to say, I was sad & frustrated (and pretty much experienced all 5 stage of grief) that breast-feeding didn't work for me this time. But, it didn't. And I can honestly say I tried just about everything (hyper-pumping, talking with 2 lactation consultants, seeing my midwife, seeing my Kinesiologist, seeing my Chiropractor, drinking Mother's Milk Tea, trying supplements, etc). It just didn't work.

So, how does that play a role into nutrition? 

Well, as most of you seasoned readers know, I was a compulsive overeater and sugar addict for many many years. What does that mean? I used food as a drug to numb myself. And once sugar is in my body, it's very very hard to get the cravings and mental "fat talk" to go away. Dealing with depression from not being able to nurse (the 4th of 5 stages of grief), I turned once again to sugar. I'm not proud of it. But it is what it is. 

I'm currently in the stage of finding a healthy balance for healthy sweeteners that work with my body (stevia & agave nectar only) and cutting out processed sugars that don't work with my body (white sugar, brown sugar, honey, maple syrup, etc). I'm also dealing with the mental game that a sugar addict deals with when they aren't treating their body right. When I'm putting healthy things into my body, the "voices" are minimal or not at all. When I'm putting unhealthy things in my body, the "voices" run rampant and the cravings are killer. I am confident, though, that prayers and support will get me back to my healthy ways. And the guilty & grief from not breast-feeding are finally gone, making it easier to get back who I am truly am... Healed, Healthy & Whole.

And for those of you wondering how Baby A's colic and reflux are doing... colic is pretty much gone! Hallelujah! We will experience it here and there, but she's usually consolable in some form or another and it's no longer in the middle of the night. We get lots of smiles during her waketimes! (Now if we could just get her to stop being so wide awake and happy as a clam after her 3am feeding!) The reflux, however, has taken a turn for the worst. She's frequently refluxing after almost every single bottle and is often times visibly uncomfortable and fussy during her feedings. We've had her medication switched from Zantac to Prevacid, but I'm not sure it's helping. Please keep Baby A & the reflux in your prayers.


Fitness-wise I am right on track & have been slowly working up to a regular workout routine!

1 Week Post-Partum: slow to moderate walking everyday (or most days) as I felt up to it strength-wise

4 Weeks Post-Partum: began doing 3 sets of 15 crunches 3 times per week, as my abdominal gap began to close

6 Weeks Post-Partum: introduced the  C25K running program & have yet to introduce group fitness classes, due to scheduling conflicts. I also signed up for a 5K schedule for October 29th!

Here is the C25K progress (my latest run):

Ran w/@Sarah. Did NOT want to run. Wasn't as bad as I thought! 3 mins run were easy peasy. First 5-min run was death, but hit my "runners high" in the last minute or two of my 2nd 5-min run! Woo-Hoo!

Duration 0:21:30 | Calories Burned 158
Average Pace 13:36 / mi | Average Speed 4.41 mph


And now for some post-baby visual progress.

From beginning to now...

5 Days Post-Baby
Wt Lost since delivery: 14 lbs
8 Weeks Post-Baby
Wt Lost since delivery: 21 lbs

And from last month to now...

4 Weeks Post-Baby
Wt Lost since delivery: 26 lbs
8 Weeks Post-Baby
Wt Lost since delivery: 21 lbs

4 Weeks Post-Baby
Wt Lost since delivery: 26 lbs
8 Weeks Post-Baby
Wt Lost since delivery: 21 lbs

So, as you can see, I've gained 5 lbs since last month. There are a few factors that have contributed to that:

  1. My Diet. I haven't been eating every 2-3 hours. I haven't been eating complete meals. And I've added sugar on an almost daily basis. All of these things have contributed to my 5 lbs in 1 month weight gain. 
  2. PCOS. Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome is hormonal and contributes to rapid weight gain. Though, I refuse to let that stop me and be an excuse! I will continue to fight this!
  3. Breast-feeding. Or the lack thereof. Breast-feeding, on average, burns about 500 calories per day. Though I have adding in running 3 days a week, it is not burning anywhere near 500 calories per day. (More like, 1/5th of that!)
And this is why I love having a blog and doing progress posts! I am able to look back and make sense of a weight gain. It takes the guilt factor (and vicious self-hatred cycle) out of it. So, now I have goals for the next month...
  1. Eat every 2-3 hours consistently.
  2. Eat complete, whole food, healthy meals.
  3. Remove processed sugar & stick to the sugars that work for my body, in moderation.
  4. Keep moving my body!

And now, for where my little peanut...

Adelyn Anna, 8-weeks old
98th %ile for length
29th %ile for weight