I’ve never had patience for the line “I don’t have time to exercise.” I’ve always felt like it was a matter of prioritization. If exercise were a priority, then time would be found for it to happen.
I may be changing my tune.
I used to run marathons.
Then I had a baby. Okay, I no longer felt like marathon training fit in, but my husband and I invested in a BOB single stroller that could handle New Orleans streets, and my baby and I did our jogging together.
Then I had a second baby. Okay, even with a double stroller, jogging was possible but kind of a beast, so we switched to walking. I felt like it was worth the cost to invest in barre classes, and I found prepaying for exercise was highly motivating to get me to attend! I attended once or twice a week and really enjoyed the solo time. My husband handled the two kids. We got into a routine.
Then I got pregnant with my third child. Okay, no more pushing 100+ lbs in the double stroller. Solo walks were now my gig. I fit in walks when I could and prioritized a weekly barre class to help me feel strong.
Then I had my third baby. While on maternity leave, the K’tan carrier and my older kids’ school schedules allowed us lots of mommy-baby walks.
Then I went back to work. And that was the final straw for me. I’m breastfeeding and can’t predict my morning schedule. Even if I got up before I expected my baby to, the downside to a baby that sleeps through the night is the equivalent of two large bottles of milk strapped to my chest when I wake up. Not the greatest recipe for exercising. In the afternoons, when I’m not working, I want to be with my kids and I also try to occasionally contribute to a meal on the table or some folded laundry.
Three kids and a job has led, for the first time this century, to exercise not happening.
In the past, the solution for me was either:
- Equipment: the single BOB Revolution stroller, the double BOB Revolution stroller, the ERGO carrier, and the K’tan carrier
- Financial motivation (i.e. if I paid for it, I’d make it happen)
I’ve not yet seen the equipment that makes exercising work with 3 kids and a crazy work-life schedule. So that left option two. I jumped at the chance to run the New Orleans Jazz Half Marathon. A discount because of my blog connection? That’s the type of financial motivation I needed.
But at this point in my life, I also needed something more … a clear goal.
I had signed up to run a half marathon and I wanted to prove to myself and my kids that I could do it. It has helped me prioritize exercise back into my busier-than-ever life.
So how’s half-marathon training going you ask? Somewhere between horribly and great. I’m running at least once a week, sometimes twice! (That is supposed to sound good.) And I recently ran 8 miles! That feat makes me feel like a half marathon in one month is doable.
I’m at peace that this is a season in my life where exercise has to take a backseat for a while. What I’m not okay with is developing unhealthy habits in the meantime or giving up entirely on finding time to take care of me.