I want to round out this week of building exercise habits by sharing with you a blog post I wrote a few years ago. This post was written a few months after my 4th child was born. I thought it would be helpful content to share with you all. Trying to exercise with little ones can be very challenging. Hang in there momma’s. You can do this! (Even if you have to keep starting over like me, the point is to keep going and trying even if it isn’t perfect.)
If you are looking for more resources on exercise, our spiritual health and how they relate to each other please go visit Peak313
Weight loss, who isn’t battling this issue? Well I do know a few people who are where they want to be but they still have to work hard to maintain it. I have struggled with my weight as long as I can remember. I have always been the “Big Girl”. That girl in school who was just a bit bigger than everyone else.
I am now a mommy of 4 young children. I want to be able to play with my kids. I want to be able to get up and down from the floor without difficulty. I want to go on hikes with my husband and other fun activities that he enjoys doing. So after my third child was born I started exercising. I began doing exercise tapes at home, and I would take my three little ones for walks. The older two would sit in a double stroller, while I wore my son. That method worked until he got too heavy for me and my neck started to cause me fits. At that point I transitioned to more videos at home. When my DS was 9 months old I got pregnant with our 4th child. I had all sorts of good intentions to work out during the pregnancy, but it never happened.
After my DD was born I was determined to get back on track. As soon as I had clearance from my Ob/Gyn following my c-section I started exercising again. It felt great. With kids to chase around all day, and taking care of a busy husband my workouts became my “retreat”. A time for me to clear my head, and just escape for a bit (even if I never left my living room!). I am thankful that I have the older kids on a nice nap schedule, so when they are down for their naps I can get my exercise time. What do I do with the baby? Well, I either put baby in a swing, or down for a nap, or if all else failed I strap her to me and together we exercise.
DD in my homemade wrap.
She usually sleeps through most of the workouts, and wakes up just in time for the end.
I have a lot of weight that I want to lose, and after about three months my weight loss plateaued. That dreaded phase that we all must go through. I got discouraged, but I wanted to keep on track and to keep working towards my goal. I began searching for options. I was/ am using Spark People but at times with 4 little ones around I found it to be too demanding. To really get the most out of the site I need to be tracking my food, logging my exercises, and reading all their wonderful articles. I love all those aspects about Spark People. I love looking at my end of the week reports and seeing all the calories I burned, and all the miles I logged for that week. Unfortunately it quickly became one more thing to do. I am already so bogged down with To Do’s I certainly don’t need any more. I do love Spark People and think it is a wonderful resource and it is FREE! but I don’t think I can maintain the level of activity the site requires during this season of my life.
So I began looking for alternatives. I stumbled upon a site while reading some devotions one day. It was of all things a Christian Fitness Blog!!!! I was in love! What a beautiful resource. Clare from Peak 313 Fitness is such a great resource. I found her on Twitter, @Peak313, and on Facebook too. She has some of the craziest exercises I have ever seen, but they work. Granted I am not a fitness pro by ANY means, even still Clare takes really hard exercises and makes them look like even I can do them. I have tried many of her “New Move Monday” routines. I can usually do one to two reps! 😉 I am hoping with time I will get better as I get stronger.
The biggest thing that got my attention about Peak313 is her perspective and balance. I was at a point where I had the mentality that I HAD to workout at least 6 days a week. Right now in the phase of my life my focus needs to be in caring for my family. Yes sometimes that means I need to be working out and getting healthy. But if my obsession with exercise is stealing time away from my God, my husband, and my kids than I have my priorities out of sync. A conversation with Clare over Twitter, I believe, really opened my eyes to that. My weight loss journey might take a lot longer than I want it to, but as long as I keep plugging away the weight will come off.
A verse in a Bible Study I have been doing keeps coming up.
Psalm 37:3 Trust in the Lord and do good; dwell in the land and cultivate faithfulness.
So much of life is just that Faithfulness. Faithfulness in our marriage, faithfulness in the mundane tasks of being a wife and mommy, and faithfulness in what we put into our mouths. I am not as faithful as I should be in so many areas of my life. I don’t always want to be faithfully folding laundry, or focusing on what my children need verses my own wants. I am not always faithful in what I put into my mouth, nor my exercise. I want to be. I pray I learn to cultivate faithfulness.
I pray you are finding ways you can cultivate faithfulness in your life this week.
Check out Clare’s web site, she has some great resources.