Today I cried
Actually it wasn’t today but it was recent. I’ve written about my struggles with trying to stay healthy and losing the baby weight and doing what’s best both for myself and for Annabelle. Like so many moms I’ve been trying to do it all, and then I lost it. Recently I’ve had conversations with other mommies about trying to find a balance; trying to find time for husbands, babies, friends, family and ourselves. It’s not easy to balance everything and as women it’s in our nature to want to take care of those around us, especially our munchkins. At over 11 months I have yet to leave Annabelle to go out on a date night, or even a date afternoon or anything that is a baby-less activity.
It was unusually warm 77 degrees in January and I had nothing to wear. Sound familiar? A closet full of clothes with nothing to wear. This time it was valid because I actually had nothing that fit. I locked myself in the bathroom screaming and then crying like a hormonal teenager. We got a good look at what Annabelle will probably be like when she’s a hormonal teenager and it wasn’t pretty. The overwhelming realization that I’m not taking the best care of myself hit me like a ton of bricks. It feels like everyone has been sick at some point since the middle of December I feel like I’ve been putting out fires out for a long time. There is never enough time to actually get anything done, just barely enough time to do the things that need to get done. The first thing to go out the window was my exercise. I want to make sure we all have good healthy meals for dinner so I won’t stop cooking and there’s no way to give up getting all our bags ready for the next day. We all need clean clothes to wear too, one day last week I did 5 loads of laundry. 5 loads! For 3 people, one of which isn’t even 3 feet tall! The only problem is that we all pay the price when mommy doesn’t work out.
I’m one of those lucky mammas who doesn’t lose weight while breastfeeding. That shouldn’t surprise me since just looking at a piece of chocolate tends to make my pants feel tighter. I need to exercise. A lot. That’s just the way it’s always been for me, no matter what I eat or even how little I eat if I don’t work out the lbs aren’t going anywhere. For some of us it’s not just a matter of calories it’s a matter of working up a good and honest sweat. Between working full time, coming home and cooking dinner, cleaning, getting things ready for the next day, when exactly am I supposed to work out? I’ve pondered the idea of jumping on the treadmill in the wee hours of the morning and praying that Annabelle sleeps long enough, but who am I kidding, I’m exhausted and she doesn’t sleep through the night on a regular basis. Then I’ve pondered coming home with Annabelle and letting her eat a snack while I run on the treadmill for a little while but then I get home and the dogs go crazy and there’s a million things to do. If I’m lucky enough for Annabelle to take a nap on the weekends I can get a good workout in but that’s not enough. It was great over winter break when I was at home and had enough time to get on the treadmill and take everyone including the dogs on a walk almost every day.
Months ago I would leave Annabelle at daycare a little longer and do Camp KettleBell which I was in love with and miss terribly. Then something happened and my anxiety levels about leaving Annabelle for even 1 more second than absolutely necessary went through the roof and unfortunately I haven’t gotten over the feeling of urgency of having to pick her up as quickly as humanly possible. So even though I had good intentions of going back to Camp KettleBell it hasn’t happened yet. But I can’t keep giving up my workouts, it’s like voluntarily giving up my sanity. I had to come up with a new game plan that doesn’t involve unrealistic expectations of myself or my anxiety levels.
Here’s the plan. C25K. Couch to 5k. I am not a runner, I’ve always wanted to be but I have never enjoyed it. There’s a track across the street from my school and there’s a park down the street from daycare. I have two legs and a jogging stroller, everything I need to run. Since this winter feels more like spring with temperatures in the high 50’s, 60’s and sometimes even the 70’s I can happily pick up Annabelle and take her for a run in the park and then let her have some fun on the swings. On the days it’s too cold I can walk across the street at school, hop on the track and go for a 30 minute run and pick Annabelle up around 4pm – that’s not too bad. We all know I need my sanity back. It should only set me back about 45 minutes if I do a 30 minute run.
So the jist of this plan is to get a couch potato to run 5K (just over 3 miles). You start off mostly walking and by the end of the program you’re supposed to be running the whole way. Even though I don’t like running I am hopeful that by the end of the 9weeks I’ll enjoy it. Actually I hope I start enjoying it before then. I know lots of people that love to run who claim to have hated it before they became runners. Here’s hoping I become a convert and can wear my pre-pregnancy clothing before I pull all the hair out of my head or drive everyone crazy with my teenage rants. I bought a new pair of running shoes since my feet never did return to their pre-pregnancy size and I was tired of my toes falling asleep and I even packed my gym bag. Now I just need the rain to stop.
My teenage rant also made me rethink how long I want to keep breastfeeding. Part of my breakdown was about how I just want my body back and I want to take care of myself. Andrew suggested that I stop breast feeding next month once she turns 1 and for a second I thought it might be a good idea. If I stop nursing I can cleanse and take all the supplements I want to ‘reset’ my body. But I don’t want to stop because I wonder why I should stop if I am physically able to breast feed and it’s the best thing I could do for Annabelle. Maybe it’s because it’s the one thing I can control and that’s why I don’t want to give it up, or maybe because of the closeness and bonding that comes with nursing. Either way, I hope that running will help me get back to a place where I feel good enough to be thrilled to share my body with Annabelle for a few more months.
If anyone wants to do the C25k with me let me know, I’d love the company. If you’re not in Fort Worth we can still do it together and hold each other accountable, it makes it easier and more fun to work out with a partner, even a virtual one. I bet a little dog called Leila who lives in Casa de Campo would love to do a C25K…
Hopefully once I start running and get my endorphins back and start feeling better my anxiety levels will drop and I’ll be OK with leaving Annabelle a little longer so I can go to Camp KettleBell at least once a week now that they have a punch card for drop in classes (YAY! I’m so glad you did that Erik! I just saw your new page when I was linking you!) If you need a serious workout and are in Fort Worth Erik Brown Fitness is the place for you!