As the holidays begin to simultaneously speed up and slow down I am finding that it’s becoming harder and harder to really fit in a good sweat session daily. Childcare is officially done for the year, which means that the times I did have to get in a good workout are pretty much done for the year too. Naps are inconsistent these days, with one kid getting up or the other not going down. Now I’m not trying to complain – the extra time with my boys is priceless, albeit chaotic, but I think we all know by now that self-care is just as important to parenting as the actual parenting itself.
The ol’ “put your oxygen mask on first” thing, you know?
For me a lot of self-care is taking the time to exercise. Sweating it all out, breathing hard, pushing myself on my terms – these are things that make it easier for me to stay calm and parent on, not to mention it helps me to be strong so I can take care of my boys.
One thing that I’ve found is that, as long as the weather allows, getting outside and going on “adventures” (long walks) with my boys is a great way to accomplish a) getting my booty in gear, b) wearing them out, and c) fulfilling their desire for learning and adventure. These spontaneous walks can be anywhere, although lately we’ve stuck to our own little neighborhood.
We bundle up in our winter coats, hats and gloves and strike off in search of a new adventure. The hills test our strength and lung capacity, especially mine when I have to carry the 30-pound 20-month-old, but finding that unsurpassed walking stick or perfectly flat skipping rock make the struggle worth it.
I like to always keep a stash of FLYJOY bars in each of our strollers because it’s a known fact that while we’re out adventuring then someone will get hungry. They’re the perfect fit for all of us – stellar nutrition stats, chewy, sweet, and so many flavors to pick from. My favorites are always cashew cookie dough and peanut butter cacao, but honestly all of the flavors are delicious.
I hardly ever check it, but after an afternoon out with my boys I always know that my step counter will be full, as will my heart. Being the mom of two very busy boys is hard work, harder than anything I’ve ever done before, but learning and watching them grow is such a gift. Even in the hardest, most stressful times – yes, even in the middle of the holiday rush – motherhood is holy ground, and so worth it. I’m thankful to have the ability to move and fuel it!