Breastfeeding while training became an issue for me. I could get up and run my short runs before my baby woke up to nurse, but it was a lot harder when I had my long runs. I don't make enough milk to pump. I eventually decided to supplement formula on the few days I would be gone for more than 3 hours on a long run. Thankfully this option worked for me and my son.
I completed the Rock n' Roll San Antonio Full Marathon with a time of 5:08:59 after four months of training. Here are five lessons I learned about training and running a full marathon.
1. You absolutely need the support your spouse, family, and friends.
My husband agreed to take the time to watch the kids to support me in my life goal. Also, I absolutely could not have done it without the virtual support of my friends who were also running on race day. Four of us decided to blog all the details of our training on a common blog called, All These Things That I've Done. We even wore matching "Team A.T.T.T.I.D" running shirts on race day. I also loved making new friends with other runners on Twitter using the #momsrunning hashtag.
2. Training with a group is best.
Unless you are blessed with wonderful running trails with loads of water fountains or you like carrying gallons of water while running. I only ran my long weekend runs with a group, but I loved the camaraderie and tips from the running coach. My group had water stations every 2 miles and arrows on the road made of flour. It was great not to have to worry about the course.
3. Great socks, shoes, and Body Glide are your best friends!
I spent $10 on a pair of Balega socks and my feet thanked me every time I wore them. When I got fitted for my shoes they told me to get a 1/2 size larger than I normally wear. Body Glide comes in a deodorant-like tube and keeps your skin from chaffing. I used it under my sports bra straps, everywhere the sun doesn't shine, and under my iPhone armband. Love that stuff!
4. Training for a marathon & breastfeeding at the same time doesn't mean you'll lose weight. In fact it tricks you into thinking that you can eat more and a large nightly dessert is nothing. While training your body is hungry all the time, but unfortunately you still have to watch what you eat. A celebratory dinner and dessert after a long run is probably okay if you want to splurge.
5. Always be able to answer the question, "Why am I running a marathon?"
Training for a marathon is almost as mentally exhausting as the physical part. You have to be mentally strong to tell your body to keep moving. At some point your body will hurt and your mind will wonder, "Why am I doing this? That bench over there looks great!" I found that having an answer ready ahead of time helps. The answer for me is very prideful, but I don't care because it kept me moving. My answer was, "I want to tell people that 8 months after having a baby I ran a marathon!" I couldn't not wait to put that in my Facebook status.
It was an amazing experience! I will definitely be doing another one in my lifetime. If you are considering running a marathon - YOU CAN DO IT! Keep up with the training schedule and will do great!
Blogpost by Guest Blogger:
Amanda is a stay at home mom of a 2.5 year old girl and a 10 month old boy. You can find Amanda blogging at TeamEspinoza.com and TheMomCrowd.com and on Twitter @AmandaEspi.
All These Things That I've Done Blog
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