With maternity leave over and being back at work, a new personal goal is coming to the fore: getting back into shape.
Now, as I mentioned in Tuesday’s post, working out faded as a priority for me during maternity leave. First, I needed six weeks to recover from my C-section. Second, the daycare situation at our gym left me unimpressed — and I hated leaving Dubya there given how young she is. While I did it a few times, I never felt comfortable with it. Finally, third, it felt selfish to leave her just to work out.
(New moms, on that third point? Happy mom, happy baby. If working out makes you happy, do it. I fumbled, being so protective that I wouldn’t even leave her with my husband. Stupid, stupid. If you feel like going, go. I promise that your behbeh will be okay.)
(But, new moms, I also know you know this intellectually. Emotionally, it’ll be different and you might not want to leave your kid. And that’s okay, too.)
Being back at work brings me the advantage of an active commute: every day I walk three miles. Three hilly miles done at a fast pace (either walking to work with my husband or running home to my daughter) in the DC sun. That’s 15 miles a week—with 10.5 miles under my belt for this first week, I feel sore and achy. Never, ever underestimate the power of walking.
But I need more activity. There’s the 2016 Cherry Blossom 10 Mile Run to consider. So running has to come back into play.
In order to work out, though, I have to consider my time. Dubya is up right now anywhere from 5:15am to 8am (she’s still figuring out how much to sleep) — it’s my first week, but I enjoy spending time with her in the morning. Once I go home, I have about two hours to spend with her before she wants to go to sleep. Then there’s the time I want to spend with my husband. And we have to have dinner, after all.
So as you can see, time management is hard, yo.
My solution? I’m buying a gym membership near my work. I plan on building up to three workouts a week, half an hour each. The gym membership is really me buying access to a shower: if it’s possible to run outside (it’s just so hot lately!), I will do it.
As Dubya gets older and we get into a better routine, I’ll start hitting the gym at home while she’s with her dad or in the gym daycare (I want her to be old enough, though, to be able to play with the other kids). Thanks to a kind co-worker, we have a BOB Ironman stroller—once Dubya is old enough and strong enough, she’ll join me for runs. I’ve always wanted to be the mom who shows her kid that exercise is fun and can make it into a fun activity for them (I imagine us running to Bethesda, getting Dubya something fun to drink or eat, then running back home).
In the meantime, though, I’m letting myself adjust first to the walking before I take up running again. Given how rundown I feel physically (and how much I huff and puff during the walk), it’ll only be good for me. As my cardio improves (and I don’t think it will take long), I’ll add in the runs and go from there. Ideally, I’ll be doing some weight-bearing exercises by the end of the summer. Also, in order to spice things up, I plan on biking in occasionally or running home (which has the added bonus of getting me to Dubya faster).
I’m looking forward to getting physical again (Olivia Newton-John reference intended).