Mothers are super women and they can multitask like champions, simultaneously being parents to their children and accomplishing anything they can set their minds to. Completing one of the toughest triathlons in the nation while having a young child is just one example of this. Like this mom, who pumped while competing in an Ironman competition, proving that women have some serious powers.
The mom, Katrina Bolduc, took to the Facebook page, Breastfeeding Mama Talk, to share her story about her decision to breastfeed before competing in the incredibly tough and physically strenuous race. Bolduc said of her experience in a Facebook post:
Here's me nursing my 19 month old son at Ironman village this weekend. This was my first full Ironman — 140.6 miles! I was nervous about nursing/pumping and worried about how my pump would get to and from two transitions without me getting disqualified from taking something from my husband.
While this might not seem like a big deal to some, it's a pretty huge accomplishment. A full Ironman competition, like Bolduc said in her Facebook post, is a triathlon with a total of 140.6 miles. Competitors (both men and women, despite what the title says) swim for 2.4 miles, bike for 112 miles, and finish off the race with a 26.2 mile run. Completing one of these races (and training for them) is a big enough accomplishment — breastfeeding while racing is huge.
Bolduc continued in the Facebook post, commending the Ironman staff for being so accommodating to her needs (especially since Ironman rules state that competitors can't take any items from the crowds once the race has started):
I talked with the IM staff and they were amazing! Not only did they help me find a solution, but they were supportive and even took responsibility for my pump and brought it from T1 to T2 and made sure it was in my run gear bag for when I arrived! Keep up the good fight mamas!! #normalizebreastfeeding #ironmommy
Bolduc's feat has garnered her a lot of attention for a good reason — her photo and story shows that moms can do so much. The Facebook post on Breastfeeding Mama Talk, posted on Sunday, has over 6,000 reactions, more than 200 comments, and 100 shares. Bolduc told Scary Mommy that the milk never made it to her son, (it had to sit out in the sun all day, which could cause the breast milk to spoil) but her story can serve as inspiration for breastfeeding moms with any kind of goals, everywhere.
"I want other moms to know that the sky is not the limit," Bolduc told Scary Mommy. "We are capable of so much and we can still be amazing moms AND follow our dreams."
Bolduc is not the first woman to breastfeed or pump during a competition. Last September, one mom gained national attention for pumping while running a half marathon, using a handheld pump attached to a backpack. Both of these moms have the right idea; studies have found that exercise doesn't have any significant impacts on milk quantity or taste for children. Studies have also shown, however, that both exercise and breastfeeding are beneficial for postpartum wellbeing.
Running (and breastfeeding) both have their benefits, and Bolduc is just one mom who knows how to take advantage of both.