I ran today. I ran 4 miles, it took me every bit of 47 minutes and I half collapsed about 32 times. But I did it. Wait… we should backtrack. I live in the suburbs of Chicago. When I say I ran, I mean I did a heavily strained walk-run interval on a treadmill in my sunroom because it’s -25 degrees outside with 5 inches of snow and I have 3 little boys who constantly need my attention. So let’s start again. I walk-ran 4 miles on my treadmill with my golden retriever puppy nipping at my heels the entire time while I was grunting heavily and almost died. But I did it. I tell you this not for accolades for getting myself off the couch and working out in the middle of a lazy Sunday. I tell you this because I did the thing. Because I wanted to. So I made myself.
Let’s discuss something for a moment. I often hear something along these lines from other moms when we talk about working out: “Why should I work out? I’m not trying to impress anyone but my husband so as long as he finds me attractive why should I care?” My husband is the only one I’m trying to impress. FALSE. ME. I’m the one I’m trying to impress. No one else. ME. It’s not about attention or outside praise, it’s about forcing myself to do things I know I want to do. It’s about feeling good about myself because as a woman, as a mom, I deserve that. It’s about doing the thing.
Angry side rant: let’s note that my husband has been working out for exactly 3 weeks, cut out all drinks except water and has already lost 20 pounds because life is just that unfair and men are dumb and apparently superhuman. **side rant over**
I am a working mom of 3 crazy little boys, we know this. But I am also a woman. And before I was a mom, I was a woman who loved working out and staying active. I have always been an athlete but I have never, and will never be, a runner. But I don’t have time to go to the gym or join a fitness class or play pick up basketball every other night like I would like to. So instead, I run. I’ve learned my body responds well to running. I force myself to run, to do the thing. I do it slowly and while streaming FRIENDS episodes on Netflix with my bluetooth headphones on full blast and more than likely am interrupted 5 or 6 times to open fruit snacks or type something into the search bar on a tablet because it just can’t wait, but I do it.
Right now, right now I’m happy. Not because I’m the skinniest I’ve ever been or because I have rock hard abs after birthing 3 children. I’m happy because I’ve been forcing myself to do the thing I know I want to do but have to get myself motivated to do. I’m happy because I know myself well enough to know I love donuts, am addicted to coffee and don’t drink enough water. So running offsets that if not only just a bit.
Maybe running isn’t your thing. Maybe it’s meditating or writing or just getting out of the house to breathe once a week. But whatever it is, whatever roadblock is stopping you from doing it, do whatever you have to do to get over it. It’s going to be hard because the things are never easy, but don’t forget that just because you’re a mom doesn’t mean you stop being a woman.
Do the thing. Because let’s be honest, you know you want to.