What’s the first thing to go with you have children? ?
Besides the obvious physical things that I won’t even mention as to not scare the non-moms (yet) reading this post; it’s TIME TO YOURSELF. All of a sudden, it’s not about you anymore. You have this precious gift that now consumes all your time and body. And that’s really cute for awhile until you realize you haven’t taken a shower in a few days, gotten your eyebrows done or even stepped out of the house. Well for me, let’s fast forward 6 years, I STILL struggle to have adequate time to myself. I’m sure you do too.
Before kids, I worked out all the time. I could usually be found only two places: at work or the gym. My old roommates can attest – I was a borderline gym rat. ? I used to play competitive sports and learned to love how exercise assists in a more balanced and healthier life. But for years after my first child, I didn’t work out. With only 16 months between my first and second child, I hardly gave myself any time. ? And when I say “work out”, I don’t mean the strolls through Central Park looking cute. I’m referring to the ‘get in the gym’ with a trainer, feeling like you ‘belong on a NFL team’ type of workouts. I remember years after my second daughter, all I could do was manifest having enough time to go to yoga class because I missed it so. I was sad about it too. But I pumped my double stroller down the streets for as far as I could just to get a good sweat in. I would rent a bike with a trailer in the back and go for weekend rides as a way to figure out how to exercise and watch my kids at the same time.
Well, of course, the universe supplied a way for me to start practicing yoga again. And even now, years later, I have a couple options during the week, to fit in a 45-minute run or two after work and before the time I have to pick up the girls. I’ve come a long way but I still have more work to do. ?
And the struggle is real. During our toughest time, we waver. We can make poor decisions and stray from the eating and exercise plans that are best for us. That’s ME for the past two weeks. You already know how my last Thursday was….I won’t even go into my 5-week cold last month that left me crying to myself in the bathroom at work. Yup, for real. One of those moments. But don’t worry, after 10 days of antibiotics, I was restored. ? I was able to run again last week without coughing once. What a great feeling! ?
Today, I laced up my running shoes again, being greatly inspired by the runners yesterday at the NYC Marathon. I pushed myself out of the ‘food cheating zone’ and forced myself to go for a run. It shouldn’t be so hard but we are human, right? We fall out of habits and have to crawl our way back. As I strived for a greater me today, I wondered what other people, moms, do to push themselves to their greater lives….exercise-wise. Below are some tactics that worked for me today:
- Remember your goals. — What is your vision? Without one, failure is closer than you think. Cut out a picture of an image that motivates you. Post it on a wall that you see everyday. Or simply write down your goals for December 31, 2015. Is it to run 26 miles? Or get into a pair of jeans one size smaller? Talk with a girlfriend about your goals, make yourself accountable to someone. But have a goal and remember it as you get sluggish.
- Prepare yourself. — Get your clothes ready the night before. Don’t ever let “leaving your sneakers at home” be your excuse for not working out. Have everything in a bag ready to go; make it second nature.
- Play JAMS. — Get a playlist together that gets you pumped. Music is a powerful tool. It changes your mood and can inspire your body to do greater things. So figure out the playlist or station that will get you where you want to go.
- Just Do It. — Just like Nike says: Just do it. That means, don’t allow yourself to think. Don’t allow yourself to feel. You made the vision, set the plan, now you have to do it. Sitting in your thoughts and feelings can just lead to more distractions and easy ways out of you getting to your better self.
How do you stay motivated moms? What helps you to pull yourself out of a slump and stay the course? I’d love to hear from you on your best practices.