In the wee hours of the morning today, as I was laying with Addie hoping she would fall back asleep, I got the urge to run. I started thinking about where my running shoes were, if my iPod was charged, and if I could get down to the treadmill and squeeze in a couple miles before Eric had to leave for work. It felt good to have this feeling again.
Over the summer, I had no trouble waking up to run. I was doing the Couch to 5K and had a very specific goal in mind. I was focused, dedicated and completely addicted to running. Nothing felt better to me than starting my day with a run (followed by a peaceful shower) before the kids even woke up. For some reason, I had it in me to do this 3 times a week without fail. This lasted for a good 5 months and in that time, I haven't felt happier or healthier. I felt like I was a better mom because I had more energy and patience. I felt like a better wife because I was positive and happy. And overall, I felt like a better me. I was feeling good about my body for the first time in a LONG time and I was proud of myself for making time to something just for me.
But somewhere in the dreary months of winter...I lost that motivation. I lost that desire to wake up to run. My weekly routine went from running 3-4 times a week, to running once or twice if I was lucky. And then by January, I was down to running twice a month if I was lucky...and those runs weren't pretty. I kept trying to motivate myself. I signed up for Spring races, I set new goals, and even tried starting a 10K training program. But again...I couldn't get myself moving.
After running that 8K a couple weeks ago, I have been thinking about running a lot more. I have gone down on the treadmill a few times since then and I have been re-reading some of my running books searching for the inspiration I need. And I think I found in. I think I realized why I absolutely need to start running again. This time, it isn't about losing weight or getting in shape. It isn't about "winning" a race or even reaching a goal. For me, it's about personal well-being. I miss that alone time with myself. I miss turning on my music, running out the door, and coming home feeling tired, but accomplished. I need some energy back. I need my patience back. And most of all, I need my "happy" back.
My mom gave me this really great book called, Run Like a Mother and there is this chapter called "Running For Our Lives" and one of the authors writes:
As dearly as I love my husband, Jack and my three kids-I would go berserk (bananas, nutty, insane, cuckoo, loco, pick your adjective) if I didn't get out of the house by myself almost daily. My (running) hat is off to moms who have the patience to spend every moment from sunup to sundown with their kiddies, but I am most definitely not one of those women. I need to get out and just be me, not the time-out-giver, snack-bestower, or boo-boo kisser. I want to be merely a woman in a running skirt, sweating out the stress so I can return ready for another trip to the playground.
That is SO how I feel right now!! My wonderful, insanely hard-working husband has been pulling some ridiculous hours the past few months. It's busy season for him and I knew it was coming. In January I could already feel myself gearing up for this time of year. You see, when he works these hours, I am literally with my kiddies from sunup to sundown, 6-7 days a week. No breaks, no time for myself. Luckily, I have some amazing parents who have helped me tremendously during this time, but it's still hard. And tiring. I have new-found respect and admiration for single mothers :-)
Obviously, putting in Mommy overtime has left me with little energy to run, but I realize now that running is exactly what I need! I just have to make the time to do it and stick with it. But I am most definitely a morning runner so I know what needs to happen. I have to start waking up before Eric and the kids again. Yikes!! Thanks goodness the sun is starting to come out earlier these days! But that's not all the motivation I need. I need some partners again. So come on Hot Mommas...who's with me?!!!!