Long Run

I feel completely overwhelmed right now, what with the kids and the fitness and the writing and the everything else.

Yesterday was my first “long” run (I use quotation marks now as I’m trying to ease in to avoid injury).  I managed to run for about three miles yesterday, and I walked for another 1.2.  Not too shabby for the first real trek.  I was able to do two miles consecutively, which was good enough for me.  I felt fantastic after that 57 minutes.  My brain was clear, and my muscles were aching.  It’s true: you never regret exercising.

But at home, J was frazzled. “They’re all yours now,” he said as he climbed the stairs towards the playroom to settle in for some Sunday football-watching.  H has been a bit nuts and Ailie was fussy.  I was happy to take over; I’m grateful for the revitalization I get when away for a short respite.  Later in the day, J took the kids to the neighbors to drop off some homemade banana oatmeal muffins (adorable, right?), and so I quickly tidied up the kitchen, threw in a load of laundry, and escaped to the office (my “woman cave”) to finish the post I had started on Saturday.  When J came back a few minutes later, I had accidentally erased all of my work.

“How am I ever supposed to do this?” I moaned.  “When am I supposed to find time for everything I want to do?”  J graciously took the kids upstairs so I could finish.

Later, we talked about some short-term career options for me.  “I don’t know if I can support the running and the writing,” he said honestly.

I was annoyed by that; and at the same time, I understand.  My fitness goals – and my blogging about them –  aren’t bringing in any money for the family.  I know J wants me to be healthy and happy, but there needs to be balance.  I’m not willing to give up either at this point.  (And come January, I’ll have to add graduate classes back into the mix.)

And so I started brainstorming, as you do.  I’d like to feel more in control of my time, and the only way I know how to do that is to plan.  So, October’s resolutions:

  1. Weekly planning sessions.  If I want to accomplish my goals, I’ll need to allocate my time better.  To this end, each Sunday I’ll sit down and plan out my week.  Things to think about?  Exercise.  J will be away for a few days this week, so I’m having our babysitter come over for a few hours while H is at school so I can go for my runs.  Other than that, I can do workout DVDs while the kids nap.  Other things to knock out?  Meal planning.  So far I have our dinners covered, but I need to get breakfast and lunch under control too.  And how about time to write?  This one’s tricky.  I’d love to wake early and bang it out, but that will depend on what kind of night’s sleep we’ve had.  I have jotted down some topic ideas for the week, so that ought to take the pressure off a bit.  (Sidenote: Hendrik just woke up from his nap and bounded into my office.  “What are you doing, Mommy?” he asked in his sleepy voice.  And then: “You want to go to Starbucks?”)
  2. No convenience food!  Let’s keep this going, shall we?  And this month, we’ll be perfection.

Finally, I read Runner’s World here and there yesterday while I was nursing Ailie.  I found it oddly comforting (and a bit unsettling) that this particular issue mentioned the 1952 Helsinki Olympics in two separate instances. (My grandmother, Stina, who passed away in July, participated in the Opening Ceremony.  My great uncle, Kurt, competed on the Finnish men’s rowing team.)  There was also an article about the steep incline on Pike’s Peak in Colorado Springs, where my grandmother lived for the last 22 years of her life (and which we visited together many times).

I think she’s looking out for me.  She’s saying: keep going.

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