Wednesday, December 10, 2008

I Need to Get My Groove Back

I used to have a total fitness groove. In the year or so before my oldest (Sam) was born, I was crazy about the gym. I used to work out with a trainer three times a week and I'd run three to six miles on the days I didn't work out with her. (I didn't have kids, so I had a lot more disposable time and income.)

I was in good shape.

I worked out with my trainer up to two days before Sam was born. And I came back just weeks after he was born. Seven months after he was born I ran Bay to Breakers, a 12k race up and down the streets of San Francisco. In the rain, motherfuckers.

Shortly after that I moved to Alaska. One of the first things I did was find a gym. I went there every day. I would drop baby Sam at the kids club and would work out for an hour or so. Then I would get ready for my day in the locker room. We lived in Alaska for exactly a year. During that time, probably 95% of my showers were taken at that gym.

I was in good shape.

I worked out until shortly before my second child (Jack) was born. Within weeks of his birth, I was back at the gym. The only days I didn't go was when they didn't have an infant spot at the kids club.

Then I moved to Maryland. The first thing I did when I moved here was to find a gym. But I never managed to get into a groove. It was too far away and I had too many kids. It was too hard to find a time that I could get into the gym and when the kids club was open. This kids club charged, and I was far busier than I ever had been before. I had a third child (Quinn). Eventually I canceled my membership.

Since then, I've been trying to get back into exercising. I went through a few months when I would run at night a few times a week. I spent about four months doing an early morning fitness boot camp.

I wasn't in shape, but I was starting to get a groove.

Then I got a part-time from-home job that I work at night after the kids go to bed. Jack was diagnosed with autism. Life happened. I spend days taking care of my kids. After my two oldest get home from school, more often than not, we go to some sort of therapy for Jack. We come home, eat dinner, and the kids go to bed. Then I go to work.

I can't exercise at night and still get my work done. And I can't exercise early in the morning because I'm up until midnight or one a.m. and I can't get up at 7.

I have steadily gained weight since Quinn was born. I hate it. I hate seeing it happen to me because it's not who I am. I am not supposed to be this overweight.

I need to get back into my fitness groove. I need a fun way to do it. I need to find a way to exercise while my kids are around. I need to find a way to exercise that can involve my kids. I need to set a good example for them.

A while back I decided that I was going to sell some of our old furniture that we're not using and I'd use the money to buy a Wii. Then Jack started to struggle at school and the district doesn't want to give him the supports he needs—the supports his teachers and aides tell me he needs. So we've hired an attorney. And it's a great decision and we couldn't find anything more worthwhile to do with our money and we have very generous relatives and Jack is about a million times more important than my weight or a Wii. But with the attorney and Christmas, we're not buying a lot of extras. The money I made from selling things, which is just about enough for a Wii at this point, is going towards Christmas gifts. So the Wii will have to wait.

I will get my groove back. I'll find a way. I hope to be healthy and trim and a good example for my kids. I'll get there. I just have to figure out a way.


Wanna win a Wii and Wii Fit? That's what I'm trying to do with this post. Check out Magpie and Mothergoosemouse to learn how.

I hope this didn't come off as weird and horrible and manipulative. It's really not intended to be. It's intended to be honest. There are lots of us in this position. Lots. I am no more deserving than any of you. Tell your story too. Win a Wii. One of us should.


  1. I need to get my groove back too. I am so out of shape its appalling, and I too used to be in good shape. I have a Wii and a Wii Fit, but apparently unless you actually USE THEM, you will not lose weight. Damn.

  2. I get in these grooves where I want to sell everything I own on eBay, and then I remember what a pain in the neck it is.

    I hope you win. :)

  3. I had a groove before my kids were born, too. It was absolutely necessary, because I gain weight if I breathe wrong near food.

    And then life started moving along, and even with a groove, I lost nothing after a year of intensive gym.

    Because I suck.

  4. I hope you win a Wii and Wii Fit because when you do, I'm coming over to play to get my fitness groove back too. Good luck! :)

  5. I know EXACTLY how you feel. My typical day is:
    -get up with the kids at 6 a.m.
    -leave for work by 8 a.m.
    -get home with the kids by 6:30 p.m.
    -get the oldest kid to bed by 9 p.m.
    -finish getting ready for the next day by 10 p.m.

    Not me.

    I used to be at the gym every day. Then I would get Oliver out in the stroller for a power walk every day after work. Then I would get the twins out in the stroller for a power walk every weekend day.

    Now nobody likes sitting in the stroller and I don't exercise.

    If I were a man - I would exercise at my lunch break. But I have too much hair for the 5 minutes I would have to shower/get ready after my workout. Plus - I can't afford a gym membership anymore. I think I need a wii...

  6. My groove is more like a rut but I'm trying.

    Santa already bought the Wii, I have a gym membership, and I just spent the money I could have used on the Wii Fit to join Nutrisystem.

    So this increases your odds of winning by exactly 1. Good luck finding your groove!

  7. Not weird at all - honest and heartfelt. I really enjoyed reading your post, Jean. I hope you win!

  8. Oh, you will get your groove back. You will.

  9. I am glad you are trying to win a wii... at first I was thinking, honey, you picked a very very bad time of the year to attempt to get your groove back. :(

    We have a few hundred bucks in savings, enough money in checking to pay for this month's basics and mortgage, thousands of dollars of medical debt (and we are very conservative when it comes to therapies and such).

    Evenso, we bought a wii for Christmas and both boys birthdays (and my after hours freelance is paying for it). It's a family gift. I got the boys some little items from goodwill and also some freecycle things so they have some other things to open on their birthdays. We are doing simple cards for 'teacher gifts' and we aren't participating in many family exchanges this Christmas.

    Not a day goes by I don't think about returning the Wii as it sits all boxed up and untouched in the closet. I don't know what the right answer is, but I sure know what it feels like to want to get your groove back. And if I wii does that, then it's worth every penny.

  10. I completely understand. I worked out everyother day before #1 son was born. Much less after #2 was born. I get into a groove for about 3-4 weeks and then do something like what I did today (go to the Golden Arches instead of the gym...kinda bassakwards, isn't it). We should work out together sometime.

  11. by the way, I hope you win!!! if you do, can we come over and play? :)

  12. I hope you win it! You deserve one.

  13. Alas, I never had a fitness groove. But I am at my all-time heaviest right now, and hate it.

    We do have a Wii, and a Wii Fit, and I made a resolution this week to try to use it every day, for just half an hour. So far, so good -- but 3 days does not a "groove" make.

    I hope you get your Wii. It's a good time, and a great way for kids to interact and be physical inside during the long cold winter.

  14. Never had a fitness groove either, until after my kids were born and I was a sahm for a while. I had a stepper, a treadmill, and an exercise bike. I used them religiously, ate skinless chicken breasts and drank lots of water.

    Hmmm. Later - I got fat.
    The end.

  15. Good luck winning the Wii. I loved this post and all the comments because I too feel like I've lost my groove.... I am the heaviest I've ever been and don't like it at all.


  16. I'm closing my eyes right now, tightly, and telling the Lords of Nintendo that you should be the winner. That's pretty much a sure thing. I'm THAT good.


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