Wednesday, January 14, 2009

wednesday weigh in

Last spring, I joined a fitness group called Moms In Motion. I was introduced to the group through my fellow triplet mom, Jessica, and together the two of us would meet with at least 15 other women, every Saturday morning, and train for a 10K race that was scheduled at the conclusion of our eight-week season.

Becoming a part of this group was the impetus that I needed to start thinking about fitness and healthy living. So even though I took off on a 7,000-mile road trip a week before the race and never completed the "goal" that I had set for myself, I made a lot of progress towards the larger goal of getting in shape.

For whatever reason, or rather - host of reasons - I didn't rejoin the group for the summer or fall seasons. But when I received an e-mail from them a few weeks ago announcing that the winter season was beginning on January 10, I tucked the date in my mind with the thought that maybe I would attend.

But honestly?

When I went to bed this past Friday night at 11:30 PM, I highly doubted that I was going to get up at 6:00 AM to go running in the dark. Yet Saturday morning rolled around and like clockwork, Henry was up at 5:00. He was brought in to bed with us and while I laid there nursing him, I kept thinking that my bed felt so warm and cozy. And the baby was so cuddly. And the house was so quiet. And the triplets were sleeping so peacefully. And wow, this is as good as it gets.

And then, for some reason that I absolutely cannot explain, I moved the baby over to Charlie's side of the bed and I got up. I changed out of my warm pajamas and in to running clothes. I put on the running shoes that I've worn on only three occasions since my second triathlon in October. I grabbed my iPod. A bottle of water. A banana. And I slipped out the door and in to a dark, cold morning.

All the while, I was thinking WHY am I doing this? No one is expecting me. No one even thinks that I am going to be there. I could go back in to the house and go to sleep for quite possibly, the next two hours and no one would be the wiser.

But instead, I climbed in to the car and drove 30 minutes north to our running rendezvous. After 10 minutes of exchanging pleasantries with women who I hadn't seen in seven months, I wrote a check for $80.00 to cover my enrollment in the winter season, I signed up for a 4-mile race that is scheduled for St. Patrick's Day. And then ... I ran two miles.

While I was running - or rather stumbling along and trying not to fall down - I kept thinking that I might never be a "good" runner. Or a good swimmer. Or a good cyclist. But, exercise makes me feel more alive than I normally do, and if it helps me to not morph in to something totally soft and squishy, all the better.

If you are having a difficult time getting or staying motivated, I highly recommend joining a group. The group that I am now a part of, Moms in Motion, has teams in 4 countries, 46 states and 162 cities. The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society's Team In Training® (TNT) is another great international organization where you raise money towards cures for blood cancers and in return, receive training and support for a host of athletic events including marathons, half-marathons, triathlons and long-distance bike rides.

Charlie just recently joined a Swim Masters group at the YMCA and three times a week, is in the pool swimming laps with 20 other people at 6 AM. There are a lot of groups out there. It's just finding one that works best for you. But it is my honest opinion that it helps to have support and encouragement.

I'm not sure what the driving force was that got me out of bed this past Saturday morning. But now that I've gone to a meeting and shown my face and written a check for the season, I know that I'm committed and I must continue.

Or, I must quickly plan another cross-country trip.


As an aside: Someone left me a comment a few weeks ago asking if I could post a link to my post on tying my shoes so my feet don't fall asleep. Here's that link.

As another aside: Have you set any fitness goals for yourself this year - and if so - what are they and how are you doing?


  1. I'm seriously overweight right now and have been long enough to feel like I will always be this way.
    That freaks me out. I'm glad you talk about what you do because it makes it feel more accessible to me even with my 3 kids. Here's my blog post about what I'm doing.

  2. Jan 1st my husband and I started our plan. I have walked/jogged for 30 minutes every night on the treadmill, done strength training with weights 3 days a week and yoga the other 4 days. We are counting points with WW to help us learn proper portion control. I have lost 5 lbs and 2 inches off my waist in the last 14 days. My goal is to be a fitter, healthier me this year, but a number in my mind is 65 lbs lost.

  3. We live in much too rural an area for an exercise group, but I have been driving 20 miles one way at least twice a week to the YMCA to work out. On the days I'm not at the gym I've been faithfully using my eliptical trainer and doing a Pilates tape here at home. I am bound and determined to look and feel better when my DH comes home from Iraq than I did when he left.... 45 days until R&R and in July he'll be home for good!

    I love these Wednesday weigh in posts... they are very inspiring!

  4. I ran up and down Signal Hill today... 4.5 miles worth. I think WE are gonna win the 5K next month! You go girl! It was great talking to you on the phone the other night! Can't wait to see you guys!

  5. I actually made another blog and made myself get off my ass. For the reason of COMPLETE embarrassment, I even posted naked belly pictures. I'm brave!!!! lol

    I have exercised every day since I said I would. I am proud of myself for getting active, even if I can't promise to eat 100 calories a day and drink my daily 10 gallons of water.

    One step at a time, right?

  6. Can't agree more. Even in dodgy old Jakarta we found a group to swim with.

    AND, as it turned out - that little swimming group saved my daughters life - yes LIFE.

    Before I did the swimming group - I was breathing all wrong. Our swimming group has a coach (one that used to teach at the Australian Institute of sport, no less). She taught me how to swim and I now do 2km in a 1 hour session (which for me is huge, my husband almost doubles me).

    When in Bali (after a semester of training (and confidence), my 9 year old daughter was dragged out to sea. I followed her and kept her afloat, all while waves were crashing on us and forcing us under and dragging us out further to sea (while we were swimming freestyle towards the shore).

    Luckily - my husband (who has done 8 triathlon ironmans and has been in a swimming group for the last 12 years) saw us eventually and came out and got our daughter in, then came back (through the huge waves) and got me. The fact that I didn't panic, my daughter didn't panic (she swims a minimum of 1km a week with her swimming group and she knew she could make the distance) and that we came out alive were miraculous (a 25 year old died in the same spot the next day).

    I honestly believe that if this had happened before I had joined that swimming group the result would be different. I still would have gone after her (I did surf lifesaving when I was 16-18), but I wouldn't have believed that I could make it (it was beyond my wildest fears to have nothing to hold onto in such deep water with such rough conditions), plus, I don't think I would have had the skills to make it (I wound up in hospital for 20 hours as it was).

    Go the swimming group - go the running group - go the Improve your fitness group - anything that gets you there. Because the results will change your life (maybe more than you will ever imagine).

    Yes, deep and meaningful - but Jen, you are inspiring people to get off their backsides and get out there -my story reinforces that spirit (and there is no way I am telling my family about it because it is another cross against packing up your kids and dragging them to live in a third world country - they don't need any assistance with reasons).

  7. Not a very big goal but I am trying to move at least 45 minutes a day for 5 days a week. Mostly, I just do some sort of video at home or a brisk walk with the dog. And it's hard. But I'm trying to stick with it.

  8. I have 10 pounds left to lose of my 63 pounds of pregnancy weight. I've struggled since Christmas. Yesterday at weigh in, I lost enough to break even with my weight at New Year's. My goal is to lose the weight by the 1st birthday in April. That seems like an easy goal, but I am struggling to stay focused. It's like I'm so close that I forget I'm not all the way there.

    I need to figure out how to work in some more exercise or I fear the weight will not come off. I'll also need exercise to keep it off once I get there.

  9. I've still got the goal of running a 10K in the back of my head. There's one back in my home city on March 21st, and I've thought all along that this would be a great goal. I grew up thinking that someday I would run that race, and now, if I can get myself back there, I think I will try.

    I don't have a group that I run with, though plenty of runners I know say it's a great motivator. I would love to try it, but honestly, music (blaring loudly on headphones) is my motivator, and that's not exactly conducive to team training. Or maybe it could be. I don't know. I can come up with 1000 excuses for why training with a group wouldn't work, but I'm still promising myself that I will at least give it a try someday.

  10. Way to go!!!! I know the cozy bed sounds and feels so good, but you do feel so much better after a workout too.
    I set a goal to loose the baby weight that came back on after I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism and quit nursing my youngest 1 1/2 yrs ago. So far so good! I've lost 12 lbs. since the 2nd of Jan. and I've been exercising every day for 30 min. to 1 hr. and I feel amazing! Just 15 to 20 lbs. or when the stomach pooch and saddlebags leave, whichever comes first ;-)

  11. My goal is so modest compared to others, but I wanted to set one that I knew I could stick with, instead of aiming high, missing, and giving up like I often do :-). So my goal for this year is to exercise 140 minutes per week. That averages out to 20 minutes a day, which is very do-able, and it gives me the incentive to walk or ride my bike a bit longer each day early in the week so I can have a day off. I had been recently exercising about 60-80 minutes a week. -Anita R.

  12. My sister was diagnosed with pseudotumor - its a problem that makes her produce too much spinal fluid causing pressure in her brain and behind her eyes. can cause blindness. the cure - lose weight. the doctor said the 3 F's Fat, Forty and Female... ugh. we both qualify. so We joined LA Fitness and to keep us honest, we signed up for a trainer to help us - torture us?? but it's worth her sight.. life maybe??? She's counting on me to encourage her, and I'm counting on her to help me along. like you said - when you have someone with you - it makes it all so much easier to bear!

  13. Good for you Jen. As Oprah says
    "Do it for yourself". It is not to please anyone but you and make you feel better.
    It is cool in Florida today, and as I went to the pool, two men yelled at me--You are nuts.
    The pool was 86 degrees--my ears were a bit cold but I am happy i did my aerobics. Such as it is--it is movement for me.
    I think it is great to do something for yourself every day--take a walk if nothing else.

  14. After many years of being overweight I have joined a gym and begun a better lifestyle not just for me but for my husband and two year old.

    I follow your blog and your stories always make me laugh.


  15. I have been trying to get myself going into a fitness routine since Christmas. I bugged my husband into getting me an Ipod that I can use when i work out, I planned a whole fitness routine.

    But then our whole house got sick, and we are all still coughing.

    It's so hard to try to work out, and collapse into a puddle of coughing and running noses. I just feel too sick to work out . does that make sense?

    So hopefully I can breathe better soon, and then can start.

    Does that make sense?