If you’re writing an article about how to find more “me” time, chances are good that your audience is a group of pretty busy people. So I had to laugh when I read some “creative” tips. The first was to set my alarm a half hour earlier, the second was stay up later at night. I don’t know what the other ones were, because I quickly realized it was not worth my time. If I had that kind of flexibility, I wouldn’t need to read the article. 4:45 a.m. til 10-ish is plenty of hours to be awake already, thank you. WOW am I thankful I’ve been able to carve out some time without the sage advice of that author.
I’m happy to report that exercise has finally found an audience in our house again. Luckily my husband accepted my challenge to eat better and exercise more with me, because I think we’re both better off when the other is involved. The trade-off is that our days have been extended, and the relaxing part of the evening has gotten much shorter. After our family dinner, one of us takes on bath and toddler tv time, and the other heads off to do whatever the exercise is for that evening. Then we switch, and one puts our son to bed while the other is off. Though if I’m doing bath time, I normally don’t exercise those nights, because by the time it is my turn I’ve already been awake for 15 hours and am starting to shut down. So once the parenting, chores, and exercise is done, it’s almost 9:00 and that’s that. Imagining this schedule for the rest of my life is pretty daunting, but I realize I won’t always work the schedule that I do, and I won’t always have a child that is completely dependent on me, and this won’t be the only way to fit in exercise. I’ve accepted this craziness for now. Also, if I can do this when it’s cold and dark outside, lighter and warmer days will only help.
I don’t have a set routine or plan, I just want to make sure I’m spending 30-45 minutes a few days a week doing something exercise-related. Anything more specific, more targeted, and I will probably fail. At earlier times in my life, this would have been unacceptable. There were strategic attacks, well-calculated, with a specific end goal. I’m proud of myself that I am just trying to be healthy, and that’s enough. It’s hard enough to accomplish that without sacrificing the family time that is so important, so I’m completely comfortable leaving it at that.
That doesn’t mean the competitive beast in me isn’t still hanging around. I still pay attention to how I’m doing and if I’m raising the bar each time. I use the CardioTrainer App on my phone to keep track of time, distance, calories, etc., and it really is a motivating tool for me. I also post the work-out updates to Facebook, which I’m sure is annoying to most and nobody cares, but it keeps me accountable to myself. Just the illusion that the collective “someone” knows when I do and don’t exercise gets me up and moving when the couch and my slippers are much more inviting. I’ve kept this up for about two months now, which has broken all kinds of wimpy records set in the past three years. Combined with some major diet changes, (more on that another time), results are obvious and exciting. Want to help? Hold me accountable. Ask me how it’s going. Mention it when you haven’t seen any work-out blogs or posts lately. Join me so I can do the same for you.