I had no idea on what I wanted to write and put out today but then I had “one of those days” as a parent and it seemed fitting for the current times. #COVID19
Being a person is tough, being a mother is tough, being a mother runner is some of the toughest. Everyone has hurdles in their way and all are valid and important to respect. It doesn’t mean you are making excuses it just means that sometimes life is just a lot.
Being a work from home mom requires a lot of negotiation, time management and sometimes sacrifice of what is important for me. I set out this week to absolutely crush my training schedule and hit all of my miles and strength training. So far it’s not happening how I originally planned. I was able to maneuver and get my run in on Sunday even with a tropical store passing by and took it as a great sign that this week was going to be training awesome. Then Monday came and it was the definition of a Monday. Not feeling good and just being exhausted I didn’t do my schedule miles.
I see a lot on social media a certain program that not so subtly shames people who don't push themselves every day, do every workout and have the audacity to not be perfect---This is while they also mask the shaming with the "You don't have to be perfect" mantra . Sometimes I do push through the tiredness/lack of motivation but other times we just need to listen to our bodies and take rest. It’s not lazy to give into what we feel----sometimes that’s just the way it is. If you need to take things off your list then DO IT.
Being a mother runner brings a different set of challenges on a daily basis. We have so many hats we are trying to wear and it’s exhausting. Don’t even get me started on the famous “mom guilt”. Prior to having a kid I still didn’t have a ton of free time but I also didn't have a tiny human begging for a snack, attention or pleading for me to make the blue crayon orange. (If you have a toddler this is all too real) My training gets pushed outside of the ideal game plan often. I have to squeeze time and sometimes it’s not when I want----That’s how I became a evening runner.
Plenty of obstacles get in my way—rainstorms, lack of energy, and a toddler who decides that tonight is the night that bedtime is a shocker that’s never occurred before. Yesterday was a day we stayed in pajamas all day and I didn't regret it for a second.
I worked and tried to keep the entertainment up but just was using every ounce of motivation I had to make it until bed time. I had been watching the weather all day thinking I wouldn’t be able squeeze in my miles before the rain storms started. Secretly I wasn’t all that upset at the possibility of having the “out” guilt free. Once that golden bedtime hour came I wanted nothing more than to pour myself into a hot shower and just do nothing. When I looked at the radar though it said I had about a 30-45 min window before the storms started. Figuring I had 3 miles on the books I was pretty confident I could squeeze it all in and have a cool down. Worst case scenario I could at least get 2 in and feel like I tried.
So I laced up, put some heavy rap music on and started moving. At first I wasn’t feeling the run or my stride. I felt disjointed and just blah (totally a technical term of the highest experience). By a half mile in I started feeling better and got into a groove. Paired with a few of my favorite songs coming on I felt like I was really present for the run for the first time in a while. I went a little faster than my planned “easy pace” and felt solid like I had been back in my half marathon training block. I finished my workout drenched in sweat with not a raindrop in site.
(Actual footage of Florida humidity)
I’m a big believer in you get the run you need not necessarily the run you want. I needed last nights run. I needed to feel like me and feel connected to my movement.
This was one of those times that pushing myself was right and paid off. I felt the weight of the day melt away (could have been the FL humidity helping that but that’s just detail). Training has ups and downs all throughout it----You can crush your speed work one day and then the next day you barely can must up the energy to run 2 miles at "easy pace". You can be the fun mom, drawing, playing pretend and then the next day you're turning on an extra episode of Tot's just to get 20 min to finish your cup of coffee you've reheated 4 times.
Motherhood has taught me even more about being flexible with every day life and with my training. Sometimes some miles are better than no miles, a speed run may just have to be an easy run and sometimes no run is the best option. Missing one day of training doesn't make me a bad runner. Turning on the TV for an extra episode doesn't make me a bad mom. All you can do in either situation is to get through the day and do you best to not let it become the norm.
So regardless if you are lacing up your shoes for your miles or moving around your schedule to allow for life----I raise my cold cup of coffee to you!