Snow Day And Fitness Freedom

 

 

We had another snow day yesterday.

snow day

I must admit, I was actually happy that the schools were closed.

My son was with his dad all weekend, up late with the Super Bowl Sunday night and lately he enjoys sleeping which is the complete opposite of how he used to be when he was younger.

I loved not having to drag him out of bed yesterday and I loved even more not having to drag him to Hebrew School in the afternoon.

He is growing up so quickly that having him home was actually nice.

He didn’t bounce a ball in the house yesterday! Not even once!

I noticed he was almost out of toothpaste the other day. It occurred to me in that moment that I am not on top of his toiletries anymore because he no longer needs me to brush his teeth or give him a bath.

When did that happen? It’s like he went from three years old to some middle school kid overnight.

The years are becoming a blur and I don’t think I like it.

I longed for the day where I could leave the room and he would play safely unattended and now those days are so here that I question what it is he is doing when he is in his room without yelling for me every two minutes.

Lately I have been thinking again about those first few years of motherhood.

When he was attached to my hip.

benji and me

When I nursed him for 16 months (I sure did and I am proud), when he was my best little friend, my favorite lunch partner (we were regulars at Panera and the Nordstrom Café) and when the thought of sending him to school sounded really mean.

When the only gym I saw for a few years was the inside of our local Gymboree.

benji

When it was more important to me that he was free to run around a safe place and burn off energy than it was for me to run at all.

benji

The only exercise I had during those first few years of his life came in the form of stroller pushing, child-carrying, car seat lifting, diaper changing and don’t forget the constant entertaining and cleaning.

Oh and chasing him. He was always getting into something, like the ice bucket.

I never understood the attraction to the ice bucket but he’s a boy and I don’t understand boys.

benji in bucket

Traditional workouts were just not important to me. I lived a 24/7 workout just raising him.

Of course we attempted stroller walks sometimes in the morning and sometimes I even succeeded in getting us into a little routine where he counted bunny rabbits and I tried to count us to a 30 or 40 minute walk but it wasn’t a guaranteed thing.

I didn’t mind though.

I always knew I would have my fitness freedom back before I knew it because that little boy would suddenly not need me as much anymore.

I often think about all of those days where I chose to build with Peek A Blocks, set up the paint supplies at 7:00 am and actually sit down while he was quietly watching Baby Einstein on repeat rather than try to squeeze in an exercise session.

IMG_9217

Lately I do a hypothetical with myself to determine if I would handle things this way again should I get remarried and have more children.

I mean, there are gyms like Lifetime now with fancy two-hour babysitting but why would I bother?

Play groups in the parks, walking the malls with my best friend and her son, mommy and me classes, watching Sesame Street and playing with the Little People must have given me some form of endorphin high because I honestly didn’t notice or care that I wasn’t truly working out.

And I remember being happy. So happy.

I may not have been doing traditional workouts but I was still thin and in shape enough to keep up with my son which honestly took more energy sometimes than running a half marathon.

I may have done the count down to bedtime every day for years but I wouldn’t trade any of it.

I love to run and I adore the mental me time exercise gives me but looking back over those first few years of his life, our routine and everything we did, I am confident that I would back burner running and true workouts all over again.

benji and me

We can put off a run, skip it, reschedule it, come back to it… in a week, month or a year.

We can’t do the same with our children because moments may be missed that we can never get back.

I wrote a similar post to this last year which was featured on Blogher regarding how pregnancy and motherhood can affect your running routine.

*************

Are you snowed in again too?

If you have children, did you keep your same workout routine when they were born?

Anyone do Stroller Strides? That’s something I think I would have done if it was around back then!

 

 

 

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Comments

  1. says

    Awww what a lovely post. The throwback photos were great.

    I don’t even have kids and sometimes I skip my workout in favor of other things (i.e. penning blog posts, hanging with the Hubby, etc). Since I’m no longer in a position of trying to lose weight, I don’t feel the need to do something every day. A few times a week seems to be good enough maintenance for my mind and my body.

    • says

      It’s good when we can skip workouts and find some balance in our lives. It would have been extremely hard to keep up with a fitness routine as I have right now back when my son was a baby/toddler. I am honestly glad I didn’t even try which may sound weird in HLB land but it’s the truth. I came back to it and that worked out just fine for me.

    • says

      If your children are anything like my son when was born, you won’t be without physical activity at all! Raising a baby can really be more of a prolonged workout than running. I swear it. Must be why I rarely thought about the gym lol. And stroller walking was a workout technically, which I was doing every day.

  2. says

    Aw this is adorable. Your son is lucky to have you!! I think it’s great that you weren’t obsessed with working out when your son was young. That’s more important than any run or elliptical session and shows you have balance.
    Sarah recently posted…The Work-Life BalanceMy Profile

    • says

      Thank you. It was important to me to focus on him and not try to figure out how to work in a workout routine which was something I thought about once I was pregnant. After that, I swear it didn’t cross my mind. I was in a daily workout those first few years. I didn’t even think about what I wanted to eat. I ate when hungry, was still thin and balanced but the focus was just not on fitness and all things clean eating.

  3. says

    Definitely teared up reading this! I can really relate. The past 7.5 years are a blur in some ways and I don’t know how we got to where we are now. I also did not prioritize fitness when my kids were little, it wasn’t until my second was 7 months old that I started taking the girls in the jogger and doing run/walks for 30 or 40 minutes. Once my son stopped nursing overnight, I started my early morning running again, which at that point I desperately needed! I can’t imagine NOT having those baby years completely baby focused, they went by so fast as it is and it’s tough to remember the details. Great message in this post.
    Michele @ paleorunningmomma recently posted…The Best Stay-Home DatesMy Profile

    • says

      Right?! Made me tear up too a bit just thinking what a blur the years are..I had a jogging stroller but I don’t think I did more than walk with it. It’s crazy to me to even think that I didn’t think much about true exercise for those first couple of years but went back to the gym (New York Sports in Commack!) as soon as he started preschool. Like you, when I look back, I love that I was baby focused. I would do it all again.

  4. says

    I did not work out when my first two kids were born…I was also MUCH heavier at those times. After my second, I lost a LOT of weight. I continued my workout regimen when I was pregnant with my 3rd, and continued to workout after she was born. I had a very healthy pregnancy and even though we were members of a gym and I stuck to my workout routine, I still have gotten to do all the run things I did with my other ones when I didn’t workout. I am one of those who *has* to work out- for both mental sanity and to stay physically fit. My kids are watching me and I can tell they are inspired by it. Hopefully I’m setting a good example.
    AJ @ NutriFitMama recently posted…Skinny Copycat Orange Julius RecipeMy Profile

    • says

      I totally workout for my sanity and thrive off endorphins! Best part sometimes… Looking back I must have found all of the stroller walking exercise enough for me. It’s weird for me to look back and truly realize I didn’t think about the gym those first couple of years. Makes me happy since I went so much before I was pregnant and dealt with amenorrhea too yet was able to balance it all out and enjoy him, knowing I could return to the workout routine when he went to school…I am sure you set an example for the kids…I think we all do when we show them dedication to fitness, routine and healthy/balanced lifestyles.

  5. says

    Awe, TOO CUTE! Okay, since I just typed out a long comment on Hungry Runner Girl’s post about this subject, I hope you don’t mind that I copy and paste it into here. Is that okay? I hope I’m not breaking blog rules. I’m new to this. Ha ha. K, here’s what I wrote:

    I’ve given birth to four children (14, 12, 9, 11 months). I ran my first marathon when I was 20, and had my first baby when I was 21. I eased back into running with the first three, and nursed them all well into their second year of life. I jumped right back into running right after I had Callum (the baby) and he’s almost one, and my milk supply is still ship-shape. I have an SI joint that acts up from having babies and running hard, but nothing to write home about. Personally, we all need to do what we need to do. I’m a HUGE advocate for running as a way to manage stress/anxiety/depression. I wrote my thesis on it for Senior Seminar for my Kinesiology degree. The way that stress etc can affect our bodies may have been FAR worse on your person than purely running-related issues. I’m personally so proud of you (Hungry Runner Girl) for coping so well through what sounds like the hardest time of your life. The PR was the icing on the cake, and your daughter will thank you one day for taking care of yourself enough back then, during such a hard time, so that you were able to take care of her. <3

    So ya, that's what I wrote to her. But the key to your experience? Is the part where you wrote "And I remember being happy. So happy." Because that's what our kids need: healthy happy mamas. xo
    Suzy recently posted…Name-CallingMy Profile

    • says

      Isn’t it funny she and I both wrote similar topics today?! It’s funny to me to look back and realize I didn’t need/miss my routine workouts during the first almost three years of his life. I never sat still and “worked out” every day all day walking that stroller and chasing after him. I was really happy like that and went back to the gym routinely as soon as he went to preschool. It worked for me and everyone needs to do what works for them. I wouldn’t change it even though I am the queen of endorphins. Somehow I still got them from stroller walking and no running!

  6. says

    I do remember the days that I didn’t get up at the crack of dawn to workout because I was tired enough just chasing around 2 small boys:) I used to run (on the treadmill) during nap-time or after they went to bed. My days did tend to revolve around the boys and there are definitely days now that they are teenagers that I miss those days!!!
    Kim recently posted…American SniperMy Profile

    • says

      I technically had a jogging stroller but I bought it more for the cute steering well dashboard for my son to play with than for jogging lol. I must have tried to jog with it on occasion but I recall walking more than anything which was a real workout if you ask me!

  7. says

    Omg so… I don’t have kids (obvs), but reading this made me want to give my mom the biggest hug in the world. She really put so much of her life aside when I was little so that she could always play with me, read to me, and take me all sorts of places… and I value those memories SO much now that I’m older and don’t get to see her that often. You’re right about those moments being so rare and precious. I think it’s awesome that you have such great ones with your little guy 🙂
    Amanda @ .running with spoons. recently posted…. currently – february 2015 .My Profile

  8. says

    oh friend, i love this! you are a great role model for us! children are a priority and you HAPPINESS! running is a bonus. Love your honesty!

    • says

      Aw thanks…In some ways it’s weird to me now to realize I did not think about traditional workouts or running back then but I swear I wouldn’t change it! The gym was waiting for me once I returned!

  9. says

    What a beautiful post to read. I’d be lying if I said it didn’t bring a few tears to my eyes. You and your son are very lucky to have one another. Although he may not be attached to your hip these days, just know he’ll still always need his wonderful and beautiful Mother! Thanks for sharing. xo

  10. says

    Funny. “Self important” was a word I was thinking a lot. But not about GH. I was thinking that about a hysterical self important person who spews derogatory tems out at everyone they decided was “against” them while claiming everyone else was sending hate THEIR way. Funny. Especially when the comments have stayed fairly civilized, except from that single person.

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  44. says

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  45. says

    Si necesitan un kilo para hacer el juego, ¿que van a hacer con los otros 3?Segun ellos “mejorar el juego”…si quieren hacer un juego bueno, ¿por que no exprimen mejor ese millon y devuelven los otros 3?Ah no, que haran eso de todas formas, y los otros 3 kilos para la buchaca…El Kickstarter como idea esta bien, pero deberia haber un tope de dinero a recibir.

  46. says

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