Workout Woes

None of these items were needed to complete my "Manic Mom" workout for today.

Ever since I started having children I have struggled to lose the weight that has clung to my body for dear life. I never really had a big issue with gaining weight during pregnancy, it’s what comes AFTER the child is born that I struggle with. No matter what I did and what I continue to do, I just can’t seem to get my workout on without a major mishap happening. I mean, it’s one thing to jump up and go for a jog (ok a walk) when it’s just you but try incorporating all of the unknown miscellaneous crap that happens when you add children to the mix. Time and time again I have made it to our local YMCA only to have to leave right away for one reason or another, and those reasons almost ALWAYS involve my children. From Isaiah’s somehow banging his cranium against the brick wall inside the daycare right when I stepped foot on the treadmill to Jace’s trillion pound diaper blowout on the day that I forgot his diaper bag, I have had more 5 minute trips to the gym than I can count. Maybe I should start counting the calories I burn from the mad dashes to and fro and maybe that will help me shed a pound or two. I mean, I’m sure the time I ran out of the gym and across the parking lot with a butt-naked Jace, I burned way more calories that I would have walking on the treadmill for 30 minutes. Now I know that I sound like I am just making excuses. That’s fine. I am not going to do a long introduction full of whining about how hard it is to work out when you have kids. And I am not going to try to denounce the whole “you’ve let yourself go” argument that so many people who refuse to acknowledge the difficulties of this juggle like to throw my way. It is what it is. It is my desire to find a positive spin so that I won’t be discouraged and give up. So, with that in mind, today’s top ten list will highlight my attempt today to get my “burn” on. I will assign calories to each activity that occurred and see how that stacks up calorie wise. So, although I didn’t actually make it on the treadmill, I definitely got my activity in. It wasn’t a traditional work out but, who knows, maybe I can start a new trend. The “Manic Mother” diet!

Top Ten Activities that replaced my workout today…

1. RUSH HOUR-I knew that signing my children up for swim lessons would give me two days per week that I HAD to make it to the gym. I figured, if I eat right and work out those two days plus a day on the weekend, I would be well on my way to making better choices and getting my body as slim as I could maintain. So I made sure I got off work today at a decent time. Of course, I totally forgot that I neglected to put gas in the van this morning so I drove the thirty minutes to Jace’s daycare with my gas light on and my nerves on edge. Any time my tank falls below a quarter of a tank, I freak. So, with the body changes I endured from my mini panic attack, I figure I burned an extra 7 calories than I would have burned if I’d just been relaxing. Not a bad start…(TOTAL CALORIES BURNED: 7)

2. GRAB AND GO. I don’t usually pick up Jace from daycare but I did today so my husband could go to his dentist appointment. That being said, I picked up my youngest son without having his pacifier with me. He hollered the entire way home. While I listened to his pissed off shrieks from the back seat, I called Jacqueline to advise her to get Isaiah’s swim trunks ready because I would have less than 5 minutes to come home, pick her up, get Isaiah, and get him to the Y in time for his swim lesson. Now since there’s no air in my van and I had to yell so Jac could hear me above the sound of the wind roaring through my open window and my toddler’s never-ending scream fest, I think I burned an additional 11 calories. Add in another 8 calories for the sweat that began rolling down my back due to the 95 degree heat and this step of my journey netted me another 19 whole calories! Hot diggety dog! I can feel my butt shrinking just thinking about this! (TOTAL CALORIES BURNED: 26)

3. BOOK IT TO CLASS. I picked Jacqueline up from the house along with a banana for the kids to chomp on, scooped Isaiah up from school and high tailed it to the gym without skipping a beat. I pulled into the parking lot of the gym with 2 minutes to spare. And because I had my son switch his school shorts for his swim shorts while we were still in the van, I didn’t have to worry about taking him inside to change his clothes. Oh yeah, I was on my way to hitting that track! We rushed inside the gym and I all but tossed my excited first grader at his swim instructor. I turn to leave and what do I see? Jacqueline had followed me into the pool area with her baby brother Jace. I still don’t understand her logic with this one! It’s not like the boy was about to go swimming. Now what do you think a 2-year-old will do when they see what looks to be a pool party that they cannot join? Here’s a hint, if a 2-year-old spots a puddle of water they are going to want to jump in. So Jace immediately starts round two of his blood curdling crybaby concert complete with body flops and leg kicks. He looked as if he were performing a Cirque du Soleil of tantrums. It took all of my strength to drag him from the pool area and towards the daycare. I could have sworn I felt a pop in my back but my adrenaline was pumping and I had my eye on the prize…the YMCA daycare center was straight ahead! I made it half way there when Jacqueline decided she would relieve me and help with her brother. I was grateful, but I would soon regret that decision. Oh well, the struggle netted me a cool 30 calories so I am not complaining! Yet…(TOTAL CALORIES BURNED: 56)

4. DAYCARE DASH. I practically kicked down the door to the daycare to get Jace inside. He was still screaming from his disappointment at not going swimming so the attendant was justified in her quip about not having heard his voice in quite some time. I was standing at the sign in desk with pen in hand when Jacqueline escorted her baby brother most of the way into the daycare center. Now when I say most of the way I mean his entire body, except his little toddler fingers, were inside the door. His fingers…not so much. I was unaware of this fact until the door closed and his already pitch perfect tonsil opera went nuclear. Oh dear Lord in Heaven, why is my son’s hand stuck in this door right now???! I lunged to open the door and free his hand but the damage had been done. Jace had used up every ounce of fluid he had ever taken in since birth and unleashed an ocean sized waterfall of tears, slobber and other bodily fluids that will remain nameless all in his pursuit to ensure that I  was fully aware of how thoroughly disgusted he was with me as a parent. He absolutely refused to stay in the daycare after that, even with Jacqueline’s sacrificial promise to stay there and play with him. He was so outrageously freaked out that I had no choice but to take him out of there. That situation got me 22 calories burned since that lunge for the door took a lot of effort. It’s adding up! (TOTAL CALORIES BURNED: 78)

5. HOME SWEET HOME. At this point I decide it’s best just to run home and drop off Jacqueline and Jace. I only live a few minutes away from the gym and Isaiah’s swim class lasts a full 45 minutes. I thought if I hurried, I could still get in a respectable 20 to 30 minute workout in. On my way home I remembered I forgot to pay the school for their after-school latchkey services. I stopped by but they were closed. Hoping I can avoid a late fee for this infraction I head home and offload my children in an effort to hurry and get back to the gym. But my husband wanted to “quickly” discuss a couple of things with me. I spent the next 20 minutes watching him trying to figure out how to log into the kids’ school website so we could spy on their lunch choices and grades and other things that I was fortunate enough not to have to worry about my mother having access to when I was a kid. He talked and talked until it got to the point that I was going to have to make another mad dash back to the gym or I would be late picking up our son. I had given up hope for a workout by then, of course. All I wanted to do was get to my son before class let out. I ran out the door and headed back to the gym. The stress of it caused me to burn another 7 calories. (TOTAL CALORIES BURNED: 85)

6. BOOK IT TO CLASS, PART 2. I pulled back into the YMCA parking lot with 1 minute to spare. By the time I made it inside and to my son, he was standing there shivering outside the pool soaking wet. I’d forgotten to bring a towel from home and didn’t grab one from the front desk so I had him stand outside the changing areas while I ran back to get him one. When I made it back to the hallway that led to the pool, my child was standing there like a statue in a puddle of water, lips quivering. I felt bad, I truly did. I felt so bad that I burned an extra 8 calories due to my feelings alone. Add that to the 26 I burned getting him out of his class and running back and forth to get the towels and I earned a whopping 34 calories for my efforts! (TOTAL CALORIES BURNED: 119)

7.  NEXT STOP, NAKED. After I got my son dried off and wrapped into his towel, I began grabbing his school shorts, socks and shoes from the hall locker with the intentions of finding a dressing room for him to change back into his school clothes. Little did I know that my innocent young child had already dropped his swim shorts right there in the freaking hallway! I admit, I freaked completely out! I mean, last I checked, we weren’t standing in the Garden of Eden so I’m going to assume that nakedness would be frowned upon. I crouched down quickly and got him in his shorts so that his compass wasn’t pointing all over the globe. I felt my heart palpitating and I’m going to assume that I burned at least 3 calories from the shock and another 3 bending over to get his shorts on. (TOTAL CALORIES BURNED: 125)

8. HASTE MAKES YOU STRONG. In my haste to hurry up and put Isaiah’s shorts back on, I forgot about the locker door that stood open like a metal menace to society right above my head. No worries, I was not so gently reminded of that fact when I stood up in relief only to get knocked semi-unconscious by the edge of the locker. I stood there in stunned silence, choking on expletives in an effort to hold on to my ever-slipping Christian mother image that I was trying so desperately to maintain. Despite the buzzing in my ears and the throbbing battle wound on the top of my head I’m pretty sure I heard my son say something about how that looked like it hurt. You think? 10 calories were literally knocked off of my body during this episode. (TOTAL CALORIES BURNED: 135)

9. NOT SO MAD DASH. At this point, all I want to do is make it to my van without further incident. I didn’t care that my son had his shoes on backwards and was walking around with his socks in his mouth. I just wanted to get OUT of the YMCA! I made it to my vehicle and let my child in without further incident. I’m sure some other things happened in between us leaving the Y and making it to the van but I am missing a portion of my memory due to the aforementioned traumatic events so I do not recal what those things were. Still, the walk across the parking lot got me another 31 calories burned. I also burned another 3 just trying to keep from passing out. (TOTAL CALORIES BURNED: 169)

10. TILL NEXT TIME. At this time I had the opportunity to reflect on the fact that I would get to repeat this process in 2 days when it’s time for Jacqueline to go to her swim class. I almost had to take a Bayer aspirin to keep from having a heart attack at the thought of it all. I didn’t burn much but I did net 1 calorie trying to calm myself down enough to make the drive home without incident.  (TOTAL CALORIES BURNED: 170)

So although I didn’t get in a typical Elliptical based workout session, I still “got it in”. 170 calories isn’t bad for my first day back at the gym. To make things even better, my husband cooked dinner tonight so that saved me from having to get Papa John to provide the evening meal. The calories I saved by avoiding a take out melt down coupled with what I burned during my work out and I feel pretty good about today’s accomplishments. Like I said, maybe I can start a new trend, become a personal trainer or a fitness enthusiast. Or maybe I will just settle for blogging about it. That seems to be the safest bet for all involved.

Are you able to successfully balance working out with your family duties or do you struggle at making it work like I do? Leave a comment and tell us all about it. You may motivate someone, teach someone, or maybe even just give someone a good laugh and the assurance that they are not in this alone…


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