If you know me, I am not a runner…at all! In fact, I despise it! My husband is the runner in the family. Even when he’s deployed on his submarine, he’s always trying to fit in time for a treadmill run. It’s pretty crazy how they cram a treadmill onto a submarine (just shoved in between machinery in case you were wondering.) But, it’s there and he uses it as much as he can.
I’m actually envious of runners. They claim you get a “runners high” and you can relieve stress by running. I feel you either love it or loathe it. Our family is very divided on that. He loves it…I loathe it. The only “high” I feel is my elevated heart rate. And, rather than it relieving stress, it causes stress for me because I’m afraid I will end up somewhere far away from home and to stinkin’ exhausted to make it back home. I can already imagine my hubby laughing at me when I would call him to rescue me sitting (no actually laying) along the side of the road in my lycra pants, sweatband and “today’s workout fueled by coffee” tank top! Nope! I am just not a runner!
So, what made me decide to run today?
Well, first of all, it’s basketball practice night for my Little Man. There is a track that circles around the court and on the nights where I still have enough energy to stay upright at 7pm, I will speed walk around it while I watch him. Hey, every step counts, right!!?!? My Little Ladybug actually follows after her daddy’s footsteps and she loves to run too. So, tonight at practice, she wanted me to run with her instead of speed walk.
I know, I know. What was she thinking asking me such a thing!?!? But, she looked up at me so hopeful that I couldn’t say “no.” And, if you follow me on Instagram, you know I caved and had some McDonald’s fries with my sprouts and avocado sandwich for lunch. Oh, come on-don’t judge! Who can resist those? A few laps around the gym couldn’t hurt after that!
Sigh…I have to admit, it wasn’t 100% awful either. I actually enjoyed it!
I told her I was old and she had to slow down a bit. She was making me look even more like a sloth than I really am! Come on, girl! Help a girl out here!
We made a game of it and raced for a while. I “let” her win of course. We even did some jumping jacks and lunges. We went ALL out! hehe
It feels good. Not only did we get a little exercise, but we were able to spend some time together where we usually just do our own thing during that hour-long practice. I get to read my book. She gets to draw. It was nice to come together tonight and do something we BOTH (yes both of us) enjoyed.
Sometimes, changing our routine can open up those special little moments we would’ve missed out on otherwise.
I’ve gotten in the habit of telling her “not tonight” when she asked me to run with her. Tonight, I changed what was “normal” and it ended up being really special.
As I tucked her in bed tonight, she whispers in my ear, “thank you for running with me!” My heart fluttered and I knew I made the right choice to run with her rather than sit on the bench reading.
I made her a priority and she felt valued.
Our kids want nothing more than to spend time with us.
We tend to keep our schedules pretty packed. By the end of the day, we are all ready to just relax. But, just think of the special moment I would’ve missed out on had I stuck to my routine and deprived her of that little run. I can’t help but wonder how many other little memories I’ve given up because I said, “not tonight.”
Tonight has made me realize, even the most horrible activities (like running) can be made fun when you go into it with the right attitude. Rather than tonight being “just another basketball night,” I can look back at tonight as being the night I became a runner. Okay, let’s not push it. Not a runner, but a better, more fervent mother.
How about you? Do you find yourself a creature of habit?
Do you think you are missing out on opportunities in life (not just with your kids) that you may not realize? What could you change that may open up your eyes to allow these possibilities to come to place?
Take a moment this week to be mindful of what you are doing out of habit. Look for opportunities to add something new. I can’t wait to hear what excitement or new memories it brings to you!