Time management

Finding the Time

26 August, 2020 Steph's diary

Those who know me well, know that I am someone who loves a schedule. I get antsy when my routine is messed with…. Typical A type personality! And let's be honest, there is nothing that affects your schedule more than a tiny human, especially when that human is breastfeeding every 2 hours.

Every two hours might not sound too bad. Surely 2 hours in between each feeding session is enough time to get things done? Not quite… It's 2 hours from the start of one feeding session to the start of the next. In the early days, a feeding session could take close to an hour. Once you have burped the baby and got him settled, it's almost time to feed again!

So you see how little time there actually is in a day to do anything non-baby related, like some house work, some cooking or even cleaning one's own body! I can totally see how exercise would be the last thing on a new mom’s list.

In saying that, I have still been determined to try. I know that doing some exercise makes me feel better about myself and about life in general and therefore puts me in a better frame of mind for baby rearing!

But what I have realised is how important it is to let go of that schedule...any parent will tell you trying to get a baby to fit your schedule is like trying to draw blood from a stone. Gone are the days (for now) where I can say "I will run between this time and that time". Instead, I must play it by ear…. Just typing that shoots my anxiety right through the roof!

I generally like to exercise first thing in the morning, with enough time to have a cup of coffee and a think first. Now I have had to learn to use gaps in the day and to be creative. Baby happily lying looking at his mobile? Try and squeeze in ten minutes of pilates or core exercises.

I have also learnt the best way (for now) to get a run in.This works for two reasons: Firstly, I have never had a problem with waking up early and secondly because Jackson is sleeping in our bed. For his early morning feed, I feed him lying down, make sure he has fallen asleep again and then get up, have a cup of coffee and head out. This works much better than waking him up properly by getting up and feeding him in the chair. That would risk leaving a grumpy baby with an even grumpier husband.

For the last six years at least, I have run with a group of people. That has changed and I have had to accept running on my own as the new normal. If I do get to join a group it's pure luck. This comes with the territory of breastfeeding on demand. You have a rough idea of what time your baby will feed but nothing is set in stone.

Obviously, as your baby gets older and does develop more of a routine, it gets a little easier. I found the biggest help to be when feeding sessions became a lot quicker and I wasn’t tied down to the same spot for an hour or more!

We are now nearly14 weeks post birth and I feel I need a goal to focus on for my running. I was so happy when our club decided to do a ten km personal best (PB) challenge, along with a training programme. Realistically, I'm not able to follow the programme 100% as some of the runs are more than an hour and that's all I can fit in at the moment but it's great to have some structure! I have decided mine will not be a personal best but a post baby ten km! Next time I'll let you know how it went!

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