workin’ out is hard to do

It sure is. It’s WAY harder than I anticipated it would be post-baby.

I knew my body would be different, I knew my energy levels would vary, I knew I’d have to plan my workouts around the baby.  What I didn’t anticipate is the sheer LACK OF TIME in my day to even attempt a workout.  As one of my friends who is a mom of two so eloquently put it, “I can barely wipe my own butt.”  True, sister.

I also didn’t anticipate the degree of ambivalence I’ve felt toward getting back into a workout routine.  Some of this is healthy; just because our society preaches that women should ‘bounce back’ after baby, it doesn’t mean it’s right.  Women who become mothers can’t ‘bounce back;’ instead we need to find our ‘new normal’ and work within those parameters.  However, while I don’t mind delaying some of my fitness goals for the time being, I knew I wasn’t making an effort in the exercise department.  This surprised me, as I thought by six months postpartum, I’d be racing all over town with the running stroller, or dropping Maelle in child watch at the Y while I got back to my old group exercise classes.

About a month ago, I started to feel truly ready–physically and mentally–to get back into a more structured workout routine. Working out is part of who I am, and even when it’s difficult to carve out the time, I’m always glad I did.  But, see LACK OF TIME, above.  And then holidays happened.  And two big trips.  So, here we are mid-January, and I’m just now attempting to do something physical every day.

Wednesday, I lifted weights for 25 minutes.  The baby slept for 30.  So, her cries ended my workout and I didn’t get anything else done.  But, I’d broken a sweat and felt damn proud.

While I there is childcare available at the Y, I’m just not ready to drop Maelle off there yet.  (Yet another thing I didn’t anticipate.)  She’s so small (for real–only the 9th percentile for weight!), and so young, and it’s cold and flu season.  I’m sure I’ll feel more ready later this spring and summer when she’s a bit older.

So, for now I’ll need to do my workouts at home most of the time.  I have all the gear, and I’m actually a little excited to try out all those quick workout guides I’ve torn out of magazines over the years.

Today, I took Maelle out on a stroller run.  The snow had subsided, so I bundled her up and off we went!  We did 2.64 miles at about a 10-minute pace; not bad for this out-of-shape momma pushing a stroller on a windy day.

I’m challenging myself to do something active every day, even if it’s only a power walk with the stroller.  I always feel better when I’m exercising regularly, and it motivates me to eat better, too.  It’s really hard to find the time to workout; there are days I don’t feel like I get a single thing done outside of caring for my child.  But, I know this season is temporary, and (more importantly) that I’ll be glad I put in some effort when bathing suit season rolls around!

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