I know I am not a parent of twins, but I am a parent of three kids and juggling multiples is hard no matter what. And the hardest part of any marriage is when you have young kids at home, whether it is infant stage or activity stage. Running them all over the place for sports, school, band, lessons, etc. It places not only a strain on you but your marriage. You are running on empty and the last thing you want to do is exercise or be intimate with your partner, clean house and much more. Believe me, I was there. I honestly believe that most marriages end in these difficult years because the husband feels neglected and so do you for different reasons. If you can make it through the young ages, it is worth the wait. (More on that topic another time).
My best advice is to EXERCISE! I know it is the last thing on your radar because you are exhausted. BUT if you can add it to your weekly routine it will change your life. Anything helps, at home, yoga, CrossFit, running, walking, anything! I have always been committed to exercising and when I don’t exercise, I am a different person. I am more tired, lethargic, irritable and stressed. Exercise produces endorphins and actually makes your mental state of mind more manageable. You walk in dreading it and you walk out with a “I can conquer the world” state of mind. If you can make it a habit, whether its early in the morning, lunch time or when the kids go to bed. I promise you; you will never regret the time spent on your mental health and physical wellbeing.
Being committed has to be at least three times a week, at a minimum. Even if you do seven minutes to an hour, anything helps. Today, there are several apps you can download to help. The goal is to find what works best for you. Take the time to research what would best fit your needs and habits.
As I have mentioned, I spent most of my life exercising. I loved growing up playing sports, I went to college and played sports. I played on a district softball team after college. When I started to have kids, that is when I stopped. I gained weight and felt miserable for a long time. I neglected myself and soon realized I wasn’t feeling great about my body therefore leading to not wanting my husband to see me naked. It was a down hill spiral. I discussed this with other moms, some were in the same boat.
One day, my in-laws bought a trampoline for our children. I really didn’t want my kids on this unsafe contraption, so I decided I needed to be on it with them. Our daily ritual, when they got off the bus we would go outside and jump on the trampoline for an hour or so. After week one, I was feeling more like my old self. I had extra energy and I just felt better. This is when I knew what I was missing, exercise.
Week two, I joined a gym down the street. I started taking classes in high intensity, body step, body pump, etc. Whatever was offered that fit into my schedule. After a few months, and some extra weight loss I joined a group to do triathlons. I completed several triathlons and felt like I could do anything. My mental state was back on point and I felt great again. My husband and children were so proud of me.
Fast forward, in our 40’s, I asked Teri to start running with me. We decided to start running and training for bigger runs. I spent a lot of time on the internet reading how to breathe for running. It is an art form. I wanted to belly breathe on my runs. I would lay down on the floor and place my hands, one on my stomach and one on my chest. I laid there until I could tell my breaths were coming from my stomach versus my chest. I bought some great tennis shoes. Downloaded a training app to start running. Teri and I completed several half marathons and loved doing them together. We lived about an hour from each other so we did our training on our own and then met for races. We celebrated after each one and just really enjoyed this time together. After several years, we hung up our running shoes. I didn’t want to stop exercising, I just found that running takes a lot of time so I wanted to try something else. I joined a CrossFit gym, and I love it. I still do it to this day. At least four times a week and I got my husband doing it with me. We both love to talk about it and we love that we are so active. More importantly, we do so much with our kids now that they are older. We all go to yoga, cycle, CrossFit and so much more together. Our children like that we are so active and can go, go, go when we are on trips or just at home.
My point is, no matter how tired you are, make time for you and your body. Once you make it a habit, you don’t even think about it. I roll out of bed the same time every morning and head to the gym and I feel incredible on the way home. It just starts off my day right. I am less stressed, less irritated and less tired. Do yourself a favor and commit to this wonderful body and mind the good Lord gave you. You won’t regret it!