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It Starts with You

My running route this morning overlapped with the route my husband takes to drop our kids off at school.  We live in a low-traffic residential neighborhood, so he was able to slow down for a bit so the kids could say hi.  They rolled down their windows — conveniently cleaning them of the morning dew — and proceeded to hoot and holler and yell “go mommy” and make “I love you” signs with their little hands.  It doesn’t get much better than that.

There were no whines of “I wish you were taking us to school,” jokes of “who are you running away from?” (actually, they’re too young for that), or complaints that I didn’t draw some Leonardo DiVinci masterpiece on their lunch napkins.  There was just support and excitement.

I share this little story because all too often, I hear from parents who feel guilty about taking time for themselves to exercise….or actually, do lots of things that make them feel whole and independent and strong.  And this little moment in my day made me remember that these little people are the products of not just our genes, but of our lives.  Their view of “normal” is shaped by what our “normal” is.  The rhythms of their lives mirror the rhythms of ours.  And their futures are in our hands.

So next time you’re battling guilt about squeezing it in, take a moment to consider this:

it starts with you

9 Comments Post a comment
  1. Trails and Ultras #

    I don’t have children but I absolutely agree with this. As a parent you’re the main template fir adulthood that your child has. Far better that they see you taking steps to be fit and healthy rather than lounging around watching TV all day!

    January 9, 2014
  2. I totally agree with you. We all need and deserve a me-time to relax, recharge, rejuvenate to be a better parent to our children and to be a better person. And to keep our sanity 😉

    January 10, 2014
  3. deweydecimalsbutler #

    I bet that did make your day. How awesome! My daughter watched me stretch before running. One day she sat down in the middle of an Old Navy store and executed a perfect hurdle stretch. She was 2 at the time. Kids are precious like that.
    Oh, and love the signs!

    January 10, 2014
  4. Beautifully put! So much comes down to modeling, and if kiddos see you go, they want to go too. I like the visual.

    January 10, 2014
  5. Well said! A friend of mine started cycling this year, and her husband and kids are her support team along the longer routes. I was with her on one and her kindergarten son told her. “Mommy! Enough chatting, poeple are passing and you are losing!”

    I told her that the rest of the route! Mommy! Enough chatting…”

    Seriously though, if kids see you exercise, they will. It’s a win win, and we are people, we deserve a bit of time for ourselves as well!

    January 10, 2014
  6. This is awesome. Thanks for putting this in perspective for those parents that want their kids to get healthier but don’t think that it has to start with them FIRST.

    January 10, 2014
  7. LOVE. THIS. Right now I’m a million months pregnant and exercise is sadly the last thing on my mind… but I can’t wait until baby #2 comes and I can get back to my regular routine. I think this is so important and thanks for the reminder! xox

    September 17, 2014

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