Monday, January 18, 2016

Mom Guilt, Time, and Strength

This image is from my morning off with little man exploring the local mall-walking mall. We had a great morning! Can I tell you, though, 48 hours prior, I thought my head was going to explode. I let time slip away from me, I had not been feeling great, and I did not take "me" time. You guys know for me, usually "me" time is the gym. I just needed a break from some toddler tantrums and being inside too much with a sick toddler (he had pink eye late last week). Anyway, my mood has greatly improved since I got some much-needed me time at the gym yesterday. Thanks to my fellow strong-mom friend Kristin who helped motivate me to go lift even when I didn't feel like going :) It wasn't a long time away, but enough to get some blood pumping and prove to myself it was worth the time away.

"Mom guilt" is likely a familiar phrase to many of you, whether you feel as though you have experienced it or you know someone who is unwilling to carve out "me" time despite the many demands we all juggle any given day. I say 'unwilling' not to offend but to send a strong message that there IS time for you each day. It may not be the long stretches of uninterrupted quiet time or alone time to which you were once accustomed, but it is there.  You have to be willing to let go of the guilt that is for some reason attributed to women who spend time on themselves.

Anyway, we sometimes use an activity with our students where we have them keep a "time log" of everything they do for one week in terms of hours each day. The days are listed out by the hour, and you record everything you do down to the hour for the week. While this is not the exact form, it is very similar: Time Log Sheet. Anyway, usually our students are surprised to find how much time they waste on watching television or otherwise killing time with no real purpose. This can be an effective first step in being honest with yourself as to how your time is used each day. Then you can determine that you do have time, but how do you spend it? 

Previous posts have reflected on the limited amount of time (in comparison to BK- before kids) I have to invest in "me" time, so I try to spend it wisely. I have found since having a baby that one of my favorite ways to invest in myself is physical activity, but specifically, lifting weights. I feel so fortunate that I've had a series of mentors who have helped develop my confidence in the weight room so that I feel much satisfaction from this element of my workouts. While I do still feel like, in many ways, a novice runner and triathlete, the strength training piece is my comfort zone. 

So, why mention strength training with time management and mom guilt? I can't say it enough- all women should be strength training. There are so many benefits, but when it comes to time-crunch, strength training is the best of all worlds! There should be NO guilt in knowing you are not only doing your body good, but you are also keeping your bones strong, and building lean muscle tissue which helps improve stability and coordination (read: injury prevention), improves integrity of connective tissue and joints, improves metabolism (read: burn more calories at rest, who doesn't want that??), and the list continues.

Given the understanding that many people are not comfortable in the weight room or starting a strength training program, so I will be sharing videos and links for my favorite exercises and resources for all things strength training for general health and wellness. Perhaps rather than simply recommending strength training to you, showing you the exercises and links I recommend would be more beneficial. While I'm reviving our Bowersock Wellness website, I've created a public Instagram account called "BWellandStrong". Pinterest account soon to follow. I hope this "platform" will help alleviate some mom-guilt by showing you some of my videos and links, the time-factor is removed because you have a go-to spot for workout ideas. You should never regret investing in your health, but it doesn't have to be hours every day. Something is better than nothing, but nothing is just that, so go do something for yourself. I hope these links and resources will help give you some "somethings" to do without the guilt. Remember, exercise is medicine :) 

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