Baby Yoga: A Review

This past Saturday, my favorite yoga instructor hosted a Baby & Me Yoga workshop over at Prana Studio in Annapolis.

It was an hour long class – which was the perfect length to feel like you got a workout in and kept the babies occupied before any meltdowns happened.

The class itself was super informal as it should be, the music was soft popish and was all about babies (think “Baby, Baby” by Amy Grant, “You’ll Always Be My Baby” by Mariah Carey…) which added a nice background. Duffy’s daughter is about ten months and seeing her enjoy the moves just gave me a lot more confidence that maybe, Ethan will enjoy this. He did. But really, Duffy’s expertise and willingness to share her experiences with pregnancy and parenting is a large reason why I value her so much as a yoga instructor. She taught prenatal yoga after she was pregnant, versus an instructor I took once at 37 weeks – just after I left work – who WAS pregnant (in her early 2nd trimester) and had far too many chattarungas, and other equally uncomfortable poses for a 37 week pregnant lady. She wasn’t helpful in modifications either. Lesson: make sure your prenatal instructor has been pregnant before. It helps. But getting feedback and being able to talk to my prenatal yoga instructor about what was bothering my very pregnant body and my post-cesarean body has been invaluable towards my confidence in getting back to my pre-baby level of fitness.

What types of poses did we do? Stuff we can do at home. Like ….

  • Side stretches
  • Navasana (boat pose) -modified
  • Squats to stand while lifting baby in the air (ethan loves this)
  • Downward dog (keep baby on floor under your face)
  • Planks & side planks with pushups (lots of core work!)
  • Bridge pose & pelvic pulses with baby on tummy.
  • Warrior 1, & crescent lunge to triangle pose making a slide for your baby down your front leg
  • A shoulder opener while laying next to baby

I’m certain there were more but I can’t remember.

All in all, it was an amazing class. Ethan and I had a great time – he wasn’t fussy at all which is kind of miraculous. If there’s a baby & me yoga class near you, I highly recommend giving it a shot! If you’re in Annapolis and know of other baby & me classes that are worth checking out, please let me know! And if they do baby & me yoga again, I will let YOU all know so my local pals can come with!

 

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Recipe: Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies

If you’re a nursing mama, you know that there are number of foods that can assist with any sort of supply issues that may arise. When I saw lactation cookies come up in conversation on my mama group’s facebook page, I knew I had to try them.

What makes them so lactation friendly? This post does a good job explaining the key ingredients and how they help, but it’s all about the oatmeal, brewers yeast and flax seed. I accidentally forgot the brewers yeast but I did have the oatmeal and flax seed. I did still see a slight uptick in my supply (and I mean very slight). Lately I’ve been mildly concerned about whether Ethan is getting enough to eat – he seems to be eating for shorter periods of time, and more frequently. Whether this is a concern or not, I don’t know, since he still seems to be gaining weight. I’m going to make another batch in the next few days after I pick up some brewers yeast. In addition, I’ll start eating more, not that I’m dieting (I don’t believe in diets. I believe in eating healthy and balanced) but I think I often don’t eat enough calories. Because I’ve been working out, I need to make sure that I’m eating enough to compensate for the fact that I’m nursing AND working out. Do I need to worry about my supply? Ehh, probably not according to KellyMom but can you ever be too cautious?

Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Lactation cookies
{via my mama’s group/an LC at AAMC}

Ingredients

1 c. butter/margarine
1 c. sugar
1 c. brown sugar
4 T water
2 T flaxseed meal
2 large eggs
1 t vanilla
2 c. flour
1 t. baking soda
1 t. salt
3 c. oats (thick cut if you have them)
1 c. (or more) chocolate chips
2 T. brewers yeast (be generous)

Directions
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

Mix together flaxseed meal and water and set aside for 3-5 minutes.

Cream butter (or margarine) and sugars. Add eggs one at a time and mix well. Stir flaxseed mixture and add with vanilla to the butter mixture. Beat until blended.

 

Stir together dry ingredients except oats and chips. Add to butter mixture. Stir in oats and chips.

Scoop or drop onto baking sheet, preferably lined with parchment.

The dough is a little crumbly, so it may help to use a scoop.

Bake for 8-12 minutes. Makes about 6 dozen (depending on size of cookie). May be frozen for future use.

All in all, regardless of whether they really help with milk supply, it’s still a delightful cookie recipe. Next time? I might add peanut butter chips.

Don’t want to make your own cookies? Check out the MilkMakers website to order a pre-made mix subscribe to mail order cookies.

Hey mamas: did you have any supply issues? Any miracle cures that worked to boost your supply? 

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Taking it slow

I didn’t run today in honor of Boston, but I did walk. It was a beautiful night that reminded me of so many spring nights last year when I was in full on training mode. Instead of running, I spent some quality time with a spring time breeze, the husband and sleeping baby in the snap & go as we walked 1.6 miles.

It felt really good to be out and about in the fresh air, which I have not been as great about getting into (outside that is) over the past few days.

But, because I’m trying to set some solid goals, and be mildly aspirational about my fitness goals (though I know that slow and steady wins the race and that I need to listen to my body in regards to my healing) I decided to start from scratch.

I put my miles in Daily Mile again.

I also set up two walking dates for next week (I have a blind mom date next week! Eeep!!!) so I feel good about that. I’m eager to make mom pals that will hopefully really inspire me to get out more and make more friends who are mama’s.

And I’m really hoping that next week I’ll get cleared to start *slowly* working out again. I’m looking forward to starting couch 2 5k to start building up my endurance and getting back to my pre-post natal yoga class again.

training

It’s not much but it’s a start and I’m the type of person who thrives off numbers and seeing progress so it’s a starting point. Two for 2013! Woo! (it’ll be up to 6 by the end of the week!)

As I walked, taking in the spring air, looking at my precious little boy, I thought about last year and the goals I accomplished. I thought about the races I have yet to run, I thought about the streets I’ve ran on – in Boston during college, in Bennington – the town I grew up in, in DC and now in Annapolis. I thought about the trails that I fell in love with running on back in high school and smiled when I thought about the runs I have ahead of me with Ethan, and the races where him and Adam will cheer me on.

I will run again. I will race again. It will happen in due time. I can’t rush it. I won’t rush it but I will get out. And move and enjoy the weather, and keep my body moving not because I’m working towards something, but because it just feels good.

Finally, if you’re in Annapolis, there’s another 5k Run/Walk for Boston at City Dock at 10a on Saturday AM. The facebook invite page is here. Please join if you can! Adam and I will be walking it with Ethan so be sure to say hi!

{via}

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The first workout…walking it off

Yesterday, baby and I walked 1.25 miles around the neighboring town home community.

Later, I noticed my incision area bleeding a little bit around one of the edges…cue nervousness. The nurses at the hospital told me it was common to be a bit more sore around the edges as sometimes it tears a little in that area during the surgery (sorry if that’s TMI) and can be a bit tender during recovery. I attribute my activity today to that.

I also attribute it to the fact that my pre-baby running skirt may not have sat well – I’ve been worried about that a lot of my elastic waist band stuff (looking at you lululemon – and not from right before baby, I’m talking back before I lost the weight I lost last year before baby) is still a little too tight or at least it feels like it.

I’m so hesitant to spend money on new clothes though, if only because I’ve lost about twenty pounds already, and while I haven’t been so brave to try on my pre-baby pants, my maternity pants are a little loose. Hopefully, within the next few weeks, I’ll be able to start running again, and it’s now skirt/dress season (apparently? So the weather man says) so I don’t really need to wear jeans much longer. I think though, I may take Jaclyn’s advice and pick up  a couple of Forever 21’s workout pieces to tide me over .

I should also note, that 1.25 miles took a lot out of me – granted it was a little hotter than I anticipated at 1045 am. Thankfully I kept baby shaded and covered up so he didn’t get super hot, or any sun. But it was incredibly apparent as I rounded the corner back into our air conditioned apartment that my level of fitness is not even close to where it was this time last year, despite my prenatal yoga practice. Stupid injury. Trying not to set lofty racing goals, but I’m really itching to get back at it, I just need to remind myself that running is going to take time, and I can set goals to finish but this summer and fall, I’m not going to set time goals for myself.

Either way, I’ll be following up with my doctor stat, scheduling my 4 week follow-up ASAP. Additionally, because nursing is still a work in progress (thanks to the friends who have sent messages – I owe you all emails!) we’re also heading to a breastfeeding support group at the hospital this AM. Holy productive morning batman (and by productive more productive than we’ve been the past three weeks).

On that note… have a cute baby picture. He really likes to touch his face.

Also, it’s quite possible that picture was taken at 3am.

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Baby’s First Easter

Ethan celebrated his first Easter today with Nana (my mom), Auntie Shannon (my sister), Adam and myself – we had a glorious but easy to prepare dinner of Ham, Sweet Potatoes, Green Beans, Risotto, salad and an almond pastry from Trader Joes. He even wore a cute Easter onesie (the one from Carters above) from his Great Godmother (Adam’s Godmother – Aunt Mary) which he looked adorable in (but was not pleased when we put him in it – I’m pretty sure he’d rather be naked and wouldn’t be dressed at all if he had things his way). And many of those goodies were in his first Easter basket from Grandma & Grumpa (Adam’s parents) – a lovely, lovely treat.

Happy Easter everyone! (Or Happy Passover if that’s your jam!)

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Post baby goal setting

A key component to my weight loss success when Adam was away at training last year was setting goals for myself. Goals such as my first sub 30 minute 5k (check), my first sub one hour 10k (so close!), sub 2 hour half marathon (not as close as I wanted but closer!), complete my first triathlon (check). Madeline from Food, Fitness and Family gave me some great words of advice via twitter and I really got to thinking about goals and setting my post baby fitness goals.

So what are my post baby fitness goals? (You know, to get back on topic and to NOT make this an entirely momariffic blog…)

1. Compete in first post baby 5k by July 2013
Assuming I can get back to working out by my 4 week post-op follow up at the end of April, I’ll be able to slowly start running. My plan to get back at it is two fold, start small with the couch to 5k program and pick a small race – mine will likely be the Women’s Distance Running Festival 5k here in Annapolis. Last year I ran it just before my triathlon and it was the last road race before baby. It’s middle of July so even if I don’t start running til mid May, I’ll have plenty of time to train.

2. Compete in first post baby Half marathon by October 2013
I’d love to run the Baltimore Half this year, and assuming I’m successful with goal number 1, I’ll register for the Baltimore and Annapolis Half Marathon’s for October and December respectively. I’m not going in with any time goals specifically, at least not for Baltimore, will reevaluate for Annapolis.

3. Run the Army 10 miler with Adam by October 2013
We were supposed to run it together last year and because I was sidelined through most of last fall, I ended up selling my registration to a friend of ours. This year, I really want to complete it with Adam. I’m certain family or friends would come out to cheer us on with baby Schmidt. We both really want to set a good example for him as he gets bigger about being happy with himself and enjoying the outdoors as much as we do.

4. Get back to pre-baby weight and continue pre-baby weight loss goals by working out regularly and taking time for me.
I was about 10 lbs away from my weight loss goal of 125 from 157 when Adam went off to do his army training. I was at 138 when I got pregnant, and could not for the life of me figure out why the scale was stuck and kept going up. Alas, about five weeks later we figured out the issue. I gained about 26 lbs total during my pregnancy, and a week post partum, I’m already down from 164 to 153. While the weight loss is less important than just getting into shape and I’m trying not to focus on the number, I’m kind of amazed how quickly breast feeding is assisting the efforts. Once I’m cleared by my doctor, I’ll focus on toning and getting my overall fitness level back but if I can get back to my pre-baby weight by the time I can workout again, I’ll be much happier. How will I do this? My goal is to run 3 days per week and practice yoga once/week. This may be unrealistic some weeks but it’s best to have a goal to shoot for and adjust once I’m actually able to see how it works, but we have a jogging stroller and Adam and I loved running together last spring when he got home… and mommy and me yoga is starting soon over at Prana I heard, sooo what’s my excuse once I can get moving again? Until then? I want to start going for short walks – hopefully I’ll be able to start this week with my mom and sister since I know they both enjoy walking as well.

5. Eat healthier and post 1 baby friendly recipe each week
I was NOT a poster child for healthy eating during pregnancy, granted it wasn’t all crap, but I did enjoy my fair share of Taco Bell black bean burritos over the past 40 weeks. But because I enjoy focusing my blog on healthy living, I want to showcase here that you can eat healthy without a whole lot of extra effort because lets face it, when you’re feeding a newborn in 2-3 hour intervals, it doesn’t leave time for much else.


How do you set goals for yourself? What are you working towards now?

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