When we first got married, one of the ways that I could reliably frustrate my husband was by being overly optimistic about timing. For example, if I was out to dinner with friends and our food hadn’t arrived yet, I’d tell him I’d be home in about 30 minutes. That estimate totally covered time to eat, pay the bill, get another drink (or two?) and of course the one hour plus commute home from San Francisco.
In other words, I was 100% dishonest. It came from a well-intentioned place of not wanting to let him down in the moment: saying “I’ll be home in 30 minutes” sounds so much better than “at least 3 hours from now, and that’s if the after dinner cocktails aren’t super delicious, and if the train schedule improbably works in my favor.” Of course my lie would come back to bite me in the ass when it was inevitably revealed, but that was a future problem that I could avoid for, well, another 30 minutes.
It’s not a respectful way to treat your partner, consistently and knowingly offering alternative facts about your plans.
My habitual tardiness may be a silly example of how well our culture teaches us to fudge or obscure any news that we fear might be poorly received. (Just look at how many women intensely identified with Cat Person). I know I’m guilty of dissembling to maintain (an imagined?) social good all the time, for matters mundane and trivial.
In recent years, that unwillingness to put others out has manifested more in form of not asking for what I need, because the idea of either inconveniencing someone, or feeling as though I’m asking permission, feels alternately uncomfortable or stifling. And since I’m at a life stage when I need help more than ever—toddler mom, knocked up, full time job—not asking for support means I’m not showing up for myself. I’m putting up walls and limits where they don’t belong. I’m sacrificing my own health and well-being for … what, exactly?
This year, even though all the cool kids agree that resolutions are dumb, I’m using the new year as an opportunity to reflect and reset. This year, I want to reassert myself. To make space for me without guilt or excuses. To ask for the support I need instead of hoping it will be offered.
In 2018, I recognize that the limits I saw on what I could achieve and who I could be were self-inflicted. In 2018 I choose to leave behind those restrictions. I choose to be limitless. The decisions and sacrifices I will make this year will be thoughtful and proactive, not reactionary or fear-driven.
I’m going into this a realist. I know my toddler and my unborn child’s needs will ultimately come first, but from here on out, that’s an approach I choose instead of a condition I submit to.
In 2018 I show up for myself, without reservation. Without apology. Without regret. With honesty. With full presence. With an eye to the big picture.
Also, I’m going to stop reading the news so damn much. Not helpful.
This year, in partnership with Gixo, we choose to leave behind all that doesn’t serve us, and to declare #IAmLimitless. Join us for community support in achieving your goals this year, and doing more than you ever dreamed possible.
Not many people know this about me, but I have technically finished a half marathon before.
This was four or five years ago. A good friend of mine, who has a suspicious talent for convincing people to do things they ordinarily wouldn’t do, asked me to sign up with her. Her sister—an actual runner—was coming into town for the San Francisco Marathon, and my friend was signing up in solidarity.
“But,” she promised, “We’ll just walk the first mile or so, then we’ll duck out for brunch.”
This was exactly my kind of half marathon. I registered, and instead of training for the race or even opening the information emails, I spent the weeks leading up to the race carefully inspecting Google maps and Yelp for brunch places along the route. I wanted to have options, because getting a brunch table in SF can be a total shitshow. Especially on big event weekends.
Race day rolled around and I dutifully found my friend at the start line after almost not getting my bib. Because no, I hadn’t gone to packet pickup; I had to track down some frazzled event organizer just moments before the event started.
We started running along the Embarcadero and through the gray fog and among the thousands of people who had turned out for the event. Those first few miles were exhilarating. I loved the energy, the feeling of being part of something, the flatness of that part of the course, and, of course, imagining just how many pastries I’d be able to eat thanks to a supercharged appetite.
“Shall we duck out now?” I remember asking as we ran through the Marina. Plenty of good brunch options there!
“Let’s just go a little farther,” my friend said.
We repeated that conversation several more times before it hit home that we weren’t really ducking out for brunch.
I’d been had.
We kept going. Up and over the Golden Gate, and back again. Through the Presidio. By the ocean. At some point, my pace devolved into a limping walk. All my training had taken place in front of a computer and in search of pancakes, and it showed.
I won’t go into too many details about the meltdown that was the last half of that race. Let’s just say, we made it across the finish line long after the last of the promised Irish coffees had been doled out. Womp.
I learned a few key things that foggy morning in San Francisco, and they had plenty of time to soak into my soul while we waited, shivering, in the long line for the bus back to our cars. (Clearly, this story is pre-Lyft).
Don’t fall for the brunch bait
Don’t start a race you have neither intention nor ability to finish
I’m sharing this story because once again I’ve been strong armed into signing up for a half marathon. This time, it wasn’t bacon; it was beer that got me to enter my credit card information.
A (different) friend has convinced me to sign up for the Shiner half marathon in, you guessed it, Shiner, Texas. I hear there is abundant beer at the finish line. And to make sure I make it there before they run out, I’ve also signed up for a training program with Rogue Runners (who the fuck am I, right now?).
All that said, here’s why I’m really doing it: not for the bacon, not for the booze: for my baby. Err, one of my babies. The not-human one. The business baby.
That sounds weird.
You see, ever since we started Fit Approach, I’ve been an enthusiastic crew member, cheerleader, and sympathetic beer drinker at races and other run-focused events.
I’ve been to enough of them—and have enough spent time with runners—that, in critical moments, I can reasonably pretend to be a person who runs.
Like, in business meetings, while working expo booths, etc.
I’m kind of tired of pretending. And also, we’re hosting our first-ever race & yoga weekend this summer, and I want to be a part of it. I felt such amazing energy surrounded by complete strangers in those first few miles of my doomed half, I can’t imagine the high that would come from spending time with my community, for a race I was actually prepared for.
So, yes, I’m training for a half marathon in November. But the real reason I’m hitting the pavement is because come August, I plan to walk the walk. (Run the run?). Maybe not a half – we’ll see how the training goes – but definitely for the 10k. It’ll be the farthest I’ve ever run.
After coming clean about just how not-picture-perfect our sleep is, I found myself buttressed on all sides by solidarity from my community. It feels good. Almost even better than the first cup of coffee in the morning: just knowing I’m not alone, this is normal, that Mac will find her way to longer periods of sleep in her own precious time.
I then ran across this article, which only solidified that feeling of being at peace with this current reality:
Ignore the chorus telling you you’re doing it all wrong and you need to wean or leave them to cry or sleep train or give them solids or get a sleep consultant or perform some weird juju past life shit on them because if you don’t you’re not “respecting their need to sleep”.
(Yes, I’ve been told that too – and it’s bullshit).
Ignore it. You’re doing great. This will pass I promise. It’s long and hard and awful (so, so awful) but you’re not alone.
You’re not a martyr – that favourite word to attack sleep deprived mothers with – you’re just trying your best.
I highly recommend the whole thing. It literally brought me to tears, and I don’t think I can entirely blame the sleep deprivation or my (still elevated?) hormones for the weepiness. Sometimes it just feels so good to be seen and validated.
Speaking of which, here’s another post about baby sleep that might make you feel better if you’re in the thick of it right now. I read this one originally before I became a parent and before I had any awareness of high-stakes arena of the Sleep Training Games, and this paragraph stuck with me:
The thing is: babies aren’t convenient. They don’t fit our adult schedules. They shit and throw food all over. They need a great deal of time and attention and sacrifice and love. But they’re not supposed to be convenient. They’re babies. They’re growing like crazy and their bellies are tiny and they may need to eat more often than every 12 hours. They need to be cuddled and touched and loved. They need to be responded to, cared for, met with tenderness. And I feel certain that one day we will look back at “sleep training” (even that phrase makes me crazy, like you’re training a cat to pee in a litter box or something) as a terrible, psychologically-damaging socio-cultural error.
I’m somewhere on the cusp between 2nd and 3rd trimesters, and holy hell, I feel like I’ve been hit by a truck.
After a (not hard, not fast) hike yesterday morning, the fatigue knocked me flat on my back. I spent the afternoon clearing out my DVR, tagging #sweatpink shoelaces, and snuggling Tigger.
Not a bad Saturday afternoon by any measure, but I’m so not ready to say goodbye to the honeymoon second trimester, with all its energy and raging appetite.
Days like this also make me wish for a couch-time wine pairing. I settled for kombucha in a wine glass, which felt almost like having a real drink.
This change also reminds me that, holy shit, we’re so close to her actually being here. Just 85 days until my due date, says my app. I have a mile-long to-do list before then and at this rate it’s going to take me 800 days to get ‘er done.
On the bright side, I’m starting to feel very zen about the birth. I think I’ve saturated myself in enough natural birth books to start to believe that my body can handle this, and that while it will be harder and hurt more than I can possibly imagine, I can do this. And I have the right support team in place to help make it happen.
We’ll see how long that blissed-out attitude lasts. 😉
Okay, so I have to amend my list of favorite things about being pregnant to include what may now be my #1 favorite thing about being in my condition: maternity jeans.
Now that I own this life-transforming apparel, it is unclear to me why I spent weeks fussing with hairbands around the buttons of my skinny jeans or trying to wear long shirts to conceal my gaping zipper.
Most unclear to me is why all jeans aren’t made with a wide elastic band at the top. It’s so fucking genius and comfortable I can barely stand it.
Anyway, I’m really glad my new pants are working out, because I pulled a total pregnancy card to get them. I literally made my husband drive me two hours to the nearest mall with a maternity store, wait in the steaming mall parking lot with Tigger while I shopped, then drive me another 30 minutes to my midwife appointment, then drive me another two hours to San Francisco to meet my good friend’s baby for the first time. #goodhusbandaward
I’ve got more shopping on the brain, too, because we’re partnering with prAna for the next two weeks of the #1MillionMinutes challenge, and all I can do is look at their new fall line and drool and wonder, “Maybe that would be able to accommodate my belly?”
I have reason to believe some of their gear might, too: this top worked great pre-pregnancy:
AND during pregnancy:
These pants are still rocking my world – I just fold down the waistline once, and though the effect is a slight muffin top, that’s nothing that a long-ish top can’t cover up:
And my favorite swimsuit, after all, is still working for me.
I’m so excited to rack up more minutes towards our bodacious [adj] goal of reaching 1 million minutes this summer! While most of my sweat has come from hiking[type of activity], I have also done quite a bit of yoga and kayaking [type of activity].
To motivate myself to get from second breakfast [workout / activity] to hiking [workout / activity] and through my day, I always have to be armed with snacks! [noun]. I find that the more less hangry [adj] that I am, the more successful [adj] I am at achieving my goals.
Since staying on track requires so much snacking [adj] focus[noun], I think it’s important that I treat myself! If I were going to reward myself with something from prAna this week, it would most definitely be theGinger top or Holly Dress[item(s) from prAna] because the ginger top has a gorgeous drape, and the Holly dress – that back – swoon!
Disclosure: this post was sponsored by prAna. All opinions are our own. We so appreciate you supporting the brands that support Fit Approach and the Sweat Pink community!