Category Archives: mama

Who’d of thunk it?

I’m beginning to realize that I’m a person who could benefit mentally, not just physically, from getting to the gym on a consistent basis. I’m sure that any fitness specialist, doctor, gym rat, etc. would say, “duh” to my revelation, but even so, it still is a revelation for me.

All throughout school, I loathed gym class. I wasn’t good at anything, and failed almost every part of the Presidential fitness test. (I totally rocked the sit and reach, for what it’s worth.) Every year having a reminder that I failed at gym, even if I didn’t get a failing grade on my report card, well, yeah. Then I went to college and a friend of mine and I decided for some reason it would be a good idea to be gym buddies. We’d go to the gym together I don’t remember how often, but I don’t remember it being a thing that made my life significantly different or better. Since leaving college, I’ve had a few stints of getting to the gym on a semi-regular basis, but don’t remember any significant feeling of “wow, when I get to the gym I feel way better than if I miss a week”.

Last week I didn’t get to the gym at all. First there was a lot of snow, then there was a lot of laziness. I felt like poo by the beginning of this week. Yesterday, I probably could have gone on a murderous rampage from feeling so much like poo. Not physical poo, mentally, like I couldn’t stop being angry or frustrated or annoyed or any of those things. Last night, I decided that I had to get back to the gym because it couldn’t hurt, right? This morning, even though I hadn’t been there yet, I felt more calm. Now that I’ve gone, I feel a zillion times better, calmer, less irritated by insignificant things.

I’m thinking back to that quote from Legally Blonde, “Exercise gives you endorphins. Endorphins make you happy. Happy people just don’t shoot their husbands. They just don’t.” Exactly, Elle Woods. Exactly.

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Posted by on January 30, 2014 in mama


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Not a morning person

So many exercise advice lists say you should get to the gym or exercise in some way first thing in the morning. For the most part, this advice is aimed at people who get up at the same time every day for work, but it can work for other people who don’t have such regular schedules. Whenever I read these types of articles or lists of how to stick with an exercise plan or whatever, I think it makes sense to get your exercise done first thing, shower then you’re ready for the day.

Here’s my problem with implementing that strategy. The few times I’ve been to the gym recently, I’ve noticed something about myself. The days I get to the gym some time in the afternoon, exercising feels good. I can push myself and I’m tired when I’m done, but it’s for the most part a positive experience. The past two Saturday mornings that I’ve woken up and gone right to the gym have felt horrible. My workout is hard and I’ve felt wiped out after both, rather than the strange tired yet energized that I usually feel.

I’m not saying I’m giving up on the idea of exercising first thing in the morning, but at least for now, it’s not for me. I have to wake myself up earlier so I can be awake a bit before getting to the gym. To be honest, this isn’t a new thing for me. When I was in nursing school and had to be at a clinical site very early in the morning, I woke myself up that much earlier so I would be awake enough before I would be able to eat some breakfast before clinical. Even when I worked at Starbucks and opened the store very early in the morning, I would not have been able to help customers right away. It took the half hour or so of doing the opening tasks before the store opened for me to mentally wake up enough to be pleasant to customers.

I have this history of not doing well right when I wake up, so it shouldn’t surprise me that getting to the gym first thing isn’t ideal. I guess this is just a long, drawn out way of saying that week 3 day 1 of couch to 5k, which pushed the running time up to 3 minutes, kicked my ass.

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Posted by on January 18, 2014 in mama


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First trip to the gym of 2014

It’s already the 9th of January, but I finally went to the gym for the first time this year. I even gave Grace at least five times to say she didn’t want to go, but alas I could not use her as an excuse not to get to the gym. It helps that both she and Charlotte love the kid zone at the Ambler Y, so she was pretty excited to go. I didn’t feel like I wanted to or had to start over at the beginning of couch 2 5k, so I started with what I’d done last, which was day 1 of week 2 (alternate 90 seconds of jogging and 2 minutes of walking for 20 minutes). Here is a list of unorganized thoughts that I had while doing the work out and since:

*it took us longer to get dressed, shoes on, jackets on and into the car than we were at the Y, but we got there so whatever

*running with no music is a complete fail, but Caravan Palace pandora channel is a win

*I was really tempted to compare what the treadmill said were my calories burned to food in some way, but then I said screw it. I’m trying to eat what I want (as in, what I really want to be eating, not just eating all the junk food), not what I think I should be eating, so no.

*We didn’t have time to get to the pool after I did my workout, so we’re thinking of going again tomorrow. That won’t kill me, right? Right. Right…

*I’ve had a shower three days in a row. It’s like I’m on vacation or something.

So there you go. I went to the gym one time. Woo.

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Posted by on January 9, 2014 in mama


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New Year’s Resolution

Considering the possibility of paying a company tons of money so I can obsess over every piece of food I put in my mouth on the off chance that I’ll lose weight and that that weight loss will make me feel and be healthier, kind of makes me want to take a nap. It all seems so overwhelming, tiring, futile. So I am giving myself the entire year of 2014 to really embrace the “fuck diets” mentality.

My main goal for 2014 is to take my exercise/fitness/activity level goals extremely seriously. I want to be able to chase after my kids even when they’re running in opposite directions (as in, I want to have the energy to go one way and then the other, not that I think I’ll be able to go two directions at once). I want to be able to dance for more than two songs in a row. I want to some day be the grandmother who can chase after her grandchildren (or grandmother aged person who chases after grandchild aged children, not making any judgements about whether my kids have kids or not).

My secondary goal for 2014 is to write at least once a week on how my main goal is going, and to articulate more specific fitness goals. I’m hoping that writing about how I’m doing will help me be realistic in my current goals, yet help me develop new, better goals as I go. I’m also hoping that having a log of the year will help me see how far I’ve come both at the end of the year and as I go, to encourage me if I’m feeling lazy or frustrated.

My goal for January is to go to the gym and work on the couch to 5k running program at least twice a week. I have more long term running goals, but for now getting to the gym twice a week seems like a reasonably challenge. My secondary goal for January is to prepare more of the food I eat, but less in a “eat less fatty foods” way and more of an “expand repertoire of recipes I can cook without looking them up” way.

I know I could expand on a number of points in this post, but I’m hoping that leaving myself more to write about will get me to actually keep writing. I want to write more about why I feel the way I do about diets and why I don’t want to focus specifically on changing and restricting the way I eat. I want to write more about my running goals and my other fitness goals. I want to write more about what I hope to get from this year.

For now I’ll just say, “Happy New Year” and we’ll see when I post next. 😉

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Posted by on January 1, 2014 in mama


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Story Idea for Monsters Inc. 3

We’ve been watching Monsters Inc. pretty frequently lately, and I’ve been doing quite a bit of overthinking. How does Boo draw so well for a 2 year old? The thing that’s so wrong about Randall’s machine is that it’s basically torture and the difference between scaring and his machine. How Roz closes her desk window when the CDA comes and is that foreshadowing or just an expected response to the CDA? What does the juxtaposition of the one guy saying he and George are like brothers and then him calling a 2319 imply? See?

Anyway, with the next movie coming out as a prequel, I’ve been thinking about what I’d like to see as a sequel to the original story. What I’ve come up with is that somehow a parent finds out about the monster world and a kid (or a few kids) team up with Mike and Sulley to show the parent that they shouldn’t be afraid of the monster world and that they shouldn’t tell other parents/authorities about it either. Perhaps it’s Boo as an older child (older elementary school age, maybe) as one of the kids showing the parent around OR maybe it’s Boo as a parent and Mike, Sulley and Boo’s kids have to remind her about how much fun she had in monster world and how she changed everything for the better.

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Posted by on December 21, 2012 in mama


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The epic meltdown of the century

Ever since my adorable, tiny baby was born, I’ve been looking forward to when we could get back to our previous schedule of frequent outings. Well, not ever since, since for at least a few days to a week I was quite enjoying just sitting around having a normal breastfeeding relationship with my new baby. It wasn’t before long, though, that I realized that my ability to remain calm in the face of my toddler’s inability to remain calm hinged on our ability to get her the hell out of the house. Having a newborn who eats on a regular schedule of all the time put a damper on my ability to go anywhere where I wasn’t just sitting right back down and feeding her again. (Another hindrance in our leaving the house was the factor of how inordinately hot it’s been this summer and my inability to survive and parent when it’s inordinately hot.)

When adorable, tiny newborn was about a month old, after a couple of weeks of increasing tension from seeing only each other all day, every day, the three of us went for a walk to the playground. It went fairly well. Newborn (C) slept in the Ergobaby or nursed almost the entire time. Toddler (G) played with “her friends”, aka kids she just met. There were a few less than optimal aspects to our trip. I should’ve brought the stroller at least for the walk home. I should’ve brought the water bottle. I couldn’t have done anything differently when it came time to leave and C started crying just as G was running away, crying that she didn’t want to leave.

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Posted by on August 13, 2012 in mama


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Blogging about talking about sleep

What do people mean when they ask you if your baby is sleeping through the night? Do they know that normal baby sleep doesn’t always involve sleeping the entire night for 8-12 hours? Do they want to judge you if your baby isn’t sleeping through the night? Do they want to sympathize if you’re not getting a full night’s sleep? Do they really mean to ask if you’re getting enough sleep but the “normal” question to ask a new parent is about the baby’s sleep?

It doesn’t matter. I’m done caring about the motives behind the question “is your baby sleeping through the night” because I’m done answering it. I’m instituting a sort of “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy about baby sleep. It may be based in superstition or coincidence or a misunderstanding in the difference between correlation and causation, but that doesn’t really matter. I’m done answering any questions about my children’s sleep.

Why, you might ask, would I do such a thing? I’ll tell you.

Any time someone asks about how well my kid is sleeping, I’ll try to be positive (and part of it is my ability to forget the frustrating times and only remember the successful, restful times) and say something like “oh, she sleeps great. She wakes up a few times to nurse but is right back to sleep, usually.” (See, I even say things like “usually” because I don’t want to jinx it.) Invariably, that very night, something different will happen (difficulty falling asleep, waking more during the night, waking earlier in the morning than usual), and I’ll remember that conversation about sleep, shake my fist and curse talking about sleep.

I’m fully aware that any of those things could happen on any other night and I’d just get frustrated, but deal with it as a variation of normal or developmental/growth spurt or what have you. The fact that I’d just spoken about sleep in a positive way makes the negative that much more negative. Hence, I am not going to talk about sleep anymore (or at least that’s my goal). If you ask me how well my newborn sleeps, well, I haven’t thought of a simple, clever, inoffensive response yet, so I might start ranting about how talking about sleep changes the sleep so I don’t want to talk about it. I guess I should work on that response.

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Posted by on August 7, 2012 in mama


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