This morning my husband woke the kids up early, got them dressed, and walked them down to the sidelines to see me run by our hotel during the Disney Princess 1/2 Marathon. I asked him to do this because I knew seeing the kids would recharge me for the rest of the race, and also because we all were part of the training for this race.
With three kids, training for a race is not as easy as it used to be. Gone are the days of putting them in the jogger stroller. Giving up running isn’t an option now though, in fact, it is more important them ever. Parents are children’s first role model. I want my kids to value fitness. For me, exercise is a way to stay healthy, to have energy now and live long to see them grow.
That being said, once I committed to running the race, training for it had to be built into the “family” calendar. I trained with three runs a week- a steady 5k, speed work (hills and sprints), and one long run that increased by one mile each week up to 10 miles (the plan was 13 but I had to cancel it a few times for bad weather). Plus weight training two times a week and two days of rest.
With work and school, appointments and activities, the time to train had to come out of hide, so I had to minimize the time it took me away from the kids. Sometimes it meant running early in the morning, late at night, or during my lunch break at work. I started saving the last half mile of my runs to take the older kids with me, one at a time, for a quarter mile each. They were also great partners for speed work. My husband planned special time during my long runs, which ran over 90 minutes by the end.
No matter how you exercise, whether it is running or swimming or yoga, keep it up for you and your family.