I'm not a morning person, plus I get up at 5:30 a.m. so getting up any earlier was out of the question for me. I work full time so that left me with the option of working out in the evening. Our kids start the going-to-bed routine at 7:30 p.m. with lights out at 9 p.m. I'm usually in bed by 10:30 p.m. So that meant exercising after the kids were asleep was out. I knew from past experience that I wouldn't stick to an exercise routine of the treadmill day in and day out so that was out. That left me at the mercy of the Y's group exercise schedule. Most of their evening classes I was interested in were from 7-8 p.m. Factor in the 15 minutes each way it takes to get there and home. That meant if I wanted to exercise, which I decided I did, it meant I would need to go around dinner time and miss the bedtime routine.
Now, had I not already decided I wanted to exercise I would have concluded that there was no time for me to exercise. I couldn't miss dinner! I couldn't miss bedtime. Are you crazy?
No, I'm not crazy, but that's exactly what I did.
The first step was running this by Jim. If it had been him asking me if he could skip out on dinner and bedtime to go exercise I think I would have nixed the idea. But this is Jim we're talking about - father/husband of the year. He was 100% behind me.
So I went. And I went. And I went. And it got easier.
I get home with the kids at 5:30 p.m. Most nights we'll work on homework when we get home. Then the kids play while I make dinner. We all sit down to dinner (although I don't eat with them because I'm getting ready to workout). Then I'm off to the Y and Jim takes over with dinner clean up and bedtime routines. When I get home around 8:15 p.m. I read the kids stories and tuck them into bed.Then I eat dinner. Sometimes Jim eats with me, sometimes he eats with the kids. I shower, spend a little time with Jim and then I'm off to bed.
Let me address a couple of issues. I see the kids for 10 minutes in the morning and around 2 hours in the evening on the nights I work out - which these days are Monday, Tuesday and Thursday. How am I ok with only seeing my kids for 2 hours a day? It's tough, but here are some reasons why:
- It is really important for me right now to be exercising. It's key to my weight loss and it will be key to my maintenance once I hit goal.
- I'm a happier, healthier me and that makes me a better mom and wife. It does make a difference and it benefits everyone.
- This routine helps me get the most out of my time with the kids. I appreciate the time I have with them now because I know it's limited on some days.
- I'm setting a good example for my kids. It's important for them to know the benefits of regular workouts. They're used to me going to workout now. They never ask me to stay home.They can put their arms around my waist now and they say it's because of Zumba.
- Because I'm sacrificing time with my family it motivates me to make the weekend Zumba classes (Sat. at 9:45 and Sunday at 4 p.m.). I don't know if that makes sense or not. But I figure if I'm willing to miss out on family time during the week it means I better get my butt to class on the weekend when I have the luxury of spending the whole weekend with them.
- I listen to my mind-body-spirit. If I need a night off I take it. On Tuesday I was really missing my kids so I took the night off from Zumba. It was what I needed and I listened. Now I'm ready to get back to class tonight. Speaking of which, I need to kiss the kids and Jim and head over to class.