cloth diapering baby #2

cloth diapers 1

When we had originally decided to cloth diaper MacKenna, we had hoped and planned on those original 24 diapers surviving through the second child. Especially since we also had hoped and planned on having MacKenna potty trained early. But, you know, you can only hope and plan for so much and since everything I expected with my first child was completely different than reality, well, let’s just say that neither of those things happened.

We definitely got our use out of our first set of cloth diapers. So much so that there are actual holes in them and they no longer can hold what a 3 year old can deposit into them. But, we loved the crap (pun intended) out of them and definitely felt like they were a worthwhile investment, even if they only lasted for one child.

P1290051

So, I began doing my research once I got closer to the end of my pregnancy and while MacKenna was still in diapers full time. (Side note: we’ve made serious progress on the potty training but she still wears diapers for bedtime and sometimes nap time as well.) I absolutely LOVED our Bum Genius Elementals but I was not willing to spend $25 per diaper to restock our stash. (Thankfully, most of MacKenna’s cloth diapers were given as gifts so I didn’t have to shell out too much of my own money for them.) I began looking for other all-in-ones because I absolutely refuse to have to stuff diapers and wanted them to be as easy as possible for everyone to use, not just Matt + me.

P1280915

I started out by buying 2 diapers of a few other all-in-ones: Imagine, Thirsties, and Trend Lab. We only needed a few to get us through bedtime with MacKenna and it was nice to be able to just try them out before deciding on which ones we liked the best. Not only were all 3 brands cheaper (I bought the Trend Lab ones off of Zulily), but they seemed just as durable as well. Plus, 2 more Bum Genius Elementals that were on sale at the time.

The winners? We loved both the Imagine and Thirsties diapers! The Imagine diapers came in really cute patterns and the inner liner actually snaps off so we can clean poop off easier (oh thank goodness for breastfed poop – no diaper sprayer for these parents for at least a few more months!) and they will dry much faster.

cloth diapers 4

The Thirsties also came in really cute colors with the inner liner only attached on one end, again making them dry much faster.

cloth diapers 2

The Trend Lab ones were definitely NOT meant for a toddler. They would twist on MacKenna, causing her to leak at night and that’s just no fun for her or us. But, we’ve found that they work great with Miles, especially as a nighttime diaper. The insert also snaps off like the Imagine diapers, but it is much thicker. The thing I really don’t like about them is the way they snap – one end having to cross over the other to snap them (if that makes sense). Again, great for a baby, not so much for a toddler. We will probably have to stop using them once Miles is a little bigger.

cloth diapers 5

After having the chance to try them out, I ended up buying several more of the Thirsties and Imagine diapers on Diaper Junction, in addition to a few Bum Genius Free Times, which we had a few with MacKenna but didn’t like them as much as the Elementals. However, this time around, I think the Free Times are my favorites! They have 2 inner liners that are only attached on one end and overlap each other, so they too dry very quickly. And I must say, quick drying has been awesome as I sometimes forget that they are in the wash and am scrambling for a diaper at the last minute!

cloth diapers 3

Right now, I think we have about 20 diapers total. MacKenna has 4 that she claimed as her own (of course the dinosaur and elephant ones are hers) but the rest all belong to Miles. He is in cloth diapers full time now, only wearing disposables if Mama forgets to wash and/or dry the diapers before we run out or we will be out and about for the day (it’s just easier to throw away disposables than have to carry around dirty diapers in a purse of diaper bag – and I normally forget they are in there until several days later). We just switched him over to wearing cloth at night with an extra hemp liner in them to keep him from leaking overnight (he is a heavy wetter just like his sissy). I’ve seen a little more diaper rash because of this, but once we rub some cream on it, it clears up pretty quickly (Baby Butz and plain ol’ lanolin are my favorites – and cloth diaper safe).

P1290055

So, that’s it! Yes, I had to shell out another $200 or so for cloth diapers, but that will last him for the next 2+ years (and we have not seen an increase in our water bill at all). I definitely think they are worth the investment, as we probably would have already spent $200 on disposables only 3 months in. If you have any other questions, I would be happy to answer them! I’m definitely NOT an expert and can only speak from our experience but 2 babies in and going strong!

Posted in baby, parenting | Tagged , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

getting back my speed

Running has been extremely frustrating lately.  Mentally, it’s been trying because I just don’t feel like a runner.  I know… I run, therefore I am a runner.  But, it’s the physical part that’s making me feel, well, not like my normal running self.

When I planned out how I was going to get back in to running shape, I took a very conservative approach.  I waited until 6 weeks postpartum to really get back in to running (I had been running very little before that point) and made sure I was taking my time increasing my mileage.  Some of my runs have been easy, but there have been a lot of discouraging runs as well.

Yesterday, for example, was just not my day.  Because I’m on spring break this week, I’ve been getting up early to get my run in (usually after I feed Miles).  Monday’s run was flawless.  I felt strong and running felt easy.  I ended up running my fastest 3 miles yet, with an average pace of 8:18/mile.  It’s still far from where I was at this point last year, but seeing that pace gave me hope that I was making progress.

IMG_1348

Then yesterday happened.  I planned on running my first 5 miler, but once I started, I knew it just wasn’t going to be my day.  It definitely didn’t help that it was really windy, but I just felt horrible.  It was the first run postpartum where I actually felt like I needed to walk.  But, I told myself that I needed to push through it.  That everyone has a bad run and that it’d be over before I knew it.  I ended up only doing 4 but with close to a 9-minute mile pace.  So frustrating.  Ugh.

My goal in the next few months is to get my speed back.  I miss running sub-8 minute miles on a regular basis – and it feeling EASY.  I specifically chose to wait until April to start incorporating speed work as well as putting off racing until well after then (well, that’s mostly because I HATE racing in the cold) to avoid overtraining and injury.  But, as April is approaching (I’ll be about 14 weeks postpartum then), I’m starting to think more and more about how I can get my speed back.

March last year I ran my 3rd sub-20 5K, which was completely unexpected at the time because I wasn’t really training for it (knowing that we were trying to get pregnant) and had changed up my training, with many weeks doing less speed work than I had in the past.  This time around, I decided to take that same approach with the workouts I am incorporating.

IMG_0650

1.  Leg Speed.  I’m realizing more and more how vital these workouts are, especially coming back after a long time off from doing speed work (or just starting out for beginners).  Leg speed workouts are meant to increase your leg turn over, or how fast your legs move.  These are done in short intervals just to get your legs used to moving fast.  These are definitely going to be key to getting my speed back because my legs certainly don’t know what it feels like to run fast!

2.  Repeats.  These are going to be done in the form of 200- to 800-meter sprints as well as running hills.  My entire pregnancy, I would walk up every hill because my body just couldn’t handle them (I’d be totally out of breath about 2 steps in), and with as hilly as some of my upcoming races are, I know I’m going to need to work on some speedy hills.  But, those repeats are going to be more important come crunch time as I get closer to my bigger races, like Rock ‘n’ Roll Chicago.  And, I can’t believe I’m admitting this, but I’ve actually missed running repeats.  *gasp*

IMG_0921

3.  Tempos.  I’m planning on not only doing some basic tempo runs at close to my current 5K pace (which is much slower than it used to be) but also adding in some tempo intervals, which are more like longer versions of repeats.  These are my favorite runs as they really allow me to see how fast I can run for a long period of time.

4. Easy runs + fueling properly.  While these really won’t help me increase my speed per se, they are going to be vital to each and every run.  I tend to take my easy runs as fast as I possibly can, which is not good for muscles recovering from hard workouts.  So, I am really going to focus on those recovery/easy run paces and make sure I am staying within them.  But, I also need to make sure that I’m eating properly.  Part of the reason my run was so horrible yesterday was because we ate dinner at 6 PM and then I didn’t eat again until after my run, which I finished at 7:30 AM.  So, I had gone more than 12 hours without anything in my system.  Not good.  It’s something I will definitely have to figure out as I go, but I know once I can eat desserts again (after Easter) will help.

5. Squats, squats, and more squats.  I haven’t always been as fast as I am now even.  When I was in college, 9 and 10 minute miles were my norm.  It wasn’t until I really started building my legs and glutes up that I saw my paces really start to drop.  It’s not just squats though.  One of the things that really helped was actually the spinning classes I was taking 3-4x each week (I was actually teaching them at the time).  I’ve noticed that my butt is really lacking muscles, which I also know is affecting my paces.  I plan on doing heavy deadlifts and squats each week as a norm, as well as CrossFit workouts to help get back my strength.  (Unfortunately, time is not on my side and spinning classes aren’t an option.)

IMG_1309

I know I need to have patience (which I totally lack – ask my daughter) and that my speed will come back with time.  I’ll get there.  I just have to be prepared for some bumps along the way.  I’m attempting a do-over today for that 5-miler I missed yesterday.  Hopefully it goes much better!

Posted in running, strength training, training plan, workouts | Tagged , , , , , , | 3 Comments

st. patty’s weekend + workouts

Another busy, crazy week last week.  I didn’t intend to fall off the face of the earth the past two weeks, but our evenings have been busy, with a basketball game to attend, parent-teacher conferences, closing on our refinance (yes, we just bought our house), and just plain being exhausted.  So, yeah, blogging took a backseat.  But, the good news is that I’m on Spring Break!  And even with only being back at work for 2 weeks, I was in need of a week off of work.  I just need a chance to recharge and spend some time with my kiddos.

IMG_1344

I kicked off my Spring Break spending it with family and friends.  On Saturday, we headed down the road to the one of the big St. Patrick’s Day parades in the area.  I had been looking forward to it all week and thankfully, my brother and SIL decided to join us.  We ended up with several handfuls of candy and a ton of beads!  Kenna was definitely one happy girl!

IMG_1345

IMG_1346

We spent Saturday evening with our neighbors, celebrating Kory’s 30th birthday and getting excited about summer at the new house.  Our neighbors lit up the firepit and pulled out the projector screen for some late night entertainment of Blues hockey and Step Brothers after the kids went to bed (thankfully, our monitor reaches to the firepit next door).  Can’t wait until Cardinals baseball starts – it’s going to be a fun summer!

firepit

Plus, another great week of workouts – including my first 4-miler…

Monday:  2 mile easy run (8:26/mile) + 1.5 miles w/ CrossFit
Pre-WOD:  Thrusters 3×10, 55#
3 RFT:
Run 800m
Deadlifts 7x, 75#
Pullups 10x
1-Arm Thrusters 14x, 20#
Box Jumps 20x
(20:44)

Tuesday:  4 mile easy run (8:34/mile)
Pre-WOD:  Good Mornings 3×10, 45#
21-15-9 reps for time:
Pushups
Hang Cleans, 55#
Burpees
Situps
(10:44)

Wednesday:  Pre-WOD:  Front Squats 3×10, 45-55-65#
10 RFT:
Front Squats 10x, 45#
HSPUs 5x
(11:44)

Thursday:  2 mile easy run (8:49/mile) + 1 mile time trial (7:26) + 800m time trial (3:39)
Pre-WOD:  Push-Press 3×10, 55#
EMOM for 8 minutes:
Even = Push-Press 8x, 55#
Odd = Pullups 6x

Friday:  rest day

Saturday:  3 mile easy run (8:50/mile)

Sunday:  4 mile easy run (8:24/mile)

Total:  18 miles

For as busy as this week was, I am so happy I was able to get all my planned runs in.  Miles is starting to become a little more predictable, so I ended up waking up at 6 AM both days this weekend to get my run in, and I’m so happy I did!  I enjoy running in the afternoons, but I love getting my run done first thing in the morning.  Plus, the crisp, fall-like air on Sunday morning was just what I needed!

IMG_1348

Posted in running, training plan, workouts | Tagged , , , , , | 2 Comments