The picture you paint

Happy Wednesday friends, you have made it to the half way point, Friday is close by!

Today I wanted to talk about what working out looks like with kids. In my instance to kids 2 and under. We all have expectations and often they disappoint, that does not mean we do not have expectations for ourselves, it means we have grace when things do not go according to plan.

First let's discuss what it looks like in my head (and probably yours).

Step 1: The Plan

Set out workout clothes the night before, have sneakers ready, so that when you roll out of bed you can get going before the kids wake up. Know exactly what route you will run, in the time you have or which workout you will press play on in the basement.

Step 2: The execution

Dressed and ready to go, you hit the pavement or start with those jumping jacks, feeling on top of the world. You will push yourself for the 30 minutes knowing that you are starting the day off on the right foot. You are making great time, really getting into the workout and feeling good.

Step 3: The finale

You finish the workout, proud of how well you pushed yourself. You sit down on the couch with some water and a recovery snack. Then you grab a hot cup of coffee, sit in the silence and think about how grateful you are for being able to move your body.

Now let's discuss reality, the one that people don't often share about.

Step 1: The real plan

You snooze your alarm twice, roll out of bed tired from waking up on and off with your kids all night. You tug on those shoes and then you hear that sound you definitely did not want to hear, the baby crying. So you go back upstairs try to get the baby down, but spend so much time trying you fear the toddler will wake up so you throw in the towel and pop the baby in the bouncer while you get going on your workout. You opt for the 20 minute instead of 30 minute workout because you know the baby will need to nurse sooner rather than later. You are happy with 20 minutes, it is better than nothing. You hit play, then you hear the toddler screaming. So you pause before you even start and get her, you put as many toys out to distract her as possible.

Step 2: The execution

You finally hit play, feeling good, the kids are watching and you keep telling yourself you are teaching them good habits so it is good they are with you. You make it 10 minutes, still yawning from limited sleep the night before, but you keep pushing. Then the toddler throws a ball which hits the baby in the bouncer, they both start crying so you pause. You calm down the toddler and get her a new toy, you nurse the baby and put her back in the bouncer, both seem okay, you hit play while thinking that your apple watch won't have the right information recorded because you had to take a break. For the next 10 minutes you have to pause 3 more times for juice, crying, nursing... and then the toddler joins you which means really watching where you land those ski jumps.

Step 3: The finale

You finish, it took you more time to do it than you planned, but that is okay, you still finished. Your toddler asks to keep "uppersizing" and you smile, knowing that she is watching and learning from you. The breaks were worth it, having them around makes it harder but more entertaining for sure. You are proud knowing you made the time for it and did it.

It is NEVER picture perfect, anyone that has little kids and makes it look easy to fit it in is lying, sure some days when your partner is home and you have extra hands, it can be easy, but most days it takes determination and dedication to get it done.

A few tips to make the time:

- Plan the night before, when will you get it done? Early morning? Afternoon? After work? After the kids go to bed?

- Ask for help

- Be prepared, know what workout you will be doing, roughly the length and have your stuff ready to go for whenever you are doing it that day.

- Be flexible, it most likely will not go as planned.

- Do not throw in the towel and make excuses, if you want to work out then do it, if you want something bad enough there will not be excuses. If you do not make time for it then it was not a priority which is FINE, but then let it go and try again the next day. You get to choose what your priorities are.