Wednesday, February 11, 2015

From Couch Potato to Mother Runner...

Once upon a time (and by that, I mean “just two years ago"), this was me:

Let me put it this way – a year ago, I could only imagine running anywhere if I were being chased by something truly nasty…brain-craving zombies, insult-taunting bullies, axe-wielding madmen.  Those were really the only reasons that my feet might possibly hit pavement for more than a casual stroll or to get from one place to another.  Even just watching people moving rapidly on TV made me tired.  I ate junk food seven days a week, and I often brought home dinner from a drive-through instead of making a home-cooked meal.  My bathroom scale read 215 pounds at one point (oh, dear sweet honesty).  I knew my body was growing sick and unhealthy, but I was perfectly happy to continue my life as a couch potato.

Then, something frightening (and miraculous) happened.  On a bright and beautiful trip to the playground, as I stood on the sidelines watching my two young daughters run joyfully and giggling from swings to slides to monkey bars, I marveled at the kids’ energy and vigor.  When the girls called over to me, begging me to play Tag with them (“you’re It, Mom!!”), I managed a mere 5 seconds of It-ness before I had to sputter to a stop.  I could barely catch my breath.  Running around the enclosed area (small enough to be safe for little ones) was too much work for my body to handle without forcing me to gasp for air.  At that instant, I knew I needed to make a change - not just for the health and fitness that my body so desperately needed, but also for the thousands of future moments that I did not want to miss with my children.

The next day, I went from zero-to-sixty and searched the web for upcoming 5Ks in my area.  I was amazed by how many races and events were scheduled – at least one almost every weekend.  I selected a 5K sponsored by a local restaurant, the Swamp House Grille, mostly because the website boasted the best post-race party in town.   To prepare for the big day, I started doing exercise videos in my living room after my kids and hubby were asleep at night, and I managed to jog at a decent pace around my neighborhood a couple times a week.  I struggled through the aches and pains of shin splints, side stitches, and blistered toes. 

But I ran that race (albeit at a snail’s pace), I crossed the finish line, and surprisingly, I wasn’t last.

Since then, I’ve successfully completed countless 5K races, a handful of 10Ks, and two 10-milers. I lost weight, and I began to realize that overall physical fitness was more important to me than becoming super thin.

Recently, however, I admit that I've slipped a bit, going directly from my desk at work back to my couch at home.  The old “exhaustion” excuse has crept up on me again; the stress-filled days and the homework-heavy nights have taken their toll.  Mommyhood, marriage, and mint chocolate ice cream have seriously derailed my original plans for achieving “fit mama” status. 

But enough of all that!  Time to re-dedicate and re-motivate.    My running gear has been lying dormant in a drawer for far too long, waiting to be dusted off and taken for a jog around the neighborhood. 

Thus begins my journey of Running the Mommy Miles.  There’s nothing quite like a good ol’ fashioned blog to keep a person accountable, and I intend to make every one of those miles matter.

What set you on your journey towards health and fitness?


  1. What a great story and it is "to be continued" I am sure! Blogging has definitely help keep me accountable and more importantly it has helped me connect with similar people who provide such amazing support and motivation! Keep on running and keep on blogging! :)

    1. Thank you, Kristina! I'm definitely a work in progress. Accountability is the key to my success, I think. If I don't document what I do (the good AND the bad), I'll never make a change. It's just such a hard habit to break. I love all of the encouragement I see on the blogosphere - what an awesome support group! :)