This training cycle has been tougher than I expected. I realize I have a lot on my plate- full time mom, running my health coach business, blogging and training for a marathon. Plus there are those “extras” that I’ve said yes to- the hour of volunteering at my daughter’s preschool each week, a regular guest post for a local mom website, revising my health coach site and beginning to blog over there, getting a newsletter together every two weeks and so on.
I love it all! I really do.
Some weeks I find myself riding the high of doing it all and finding that perfect balance. And then other weeks I feel like I am barely hanging on and I try to figure out what can give.
Stonyfield asked us to share how we balance everything as we train for Boston, so here’s what I’m doing. I’d love to hear what works for you!
Seriously! Despite everything on my to do list each day, I prioritize sleep. I know I need it to recover well but I also that I am significantly less productive and more fuzzy brained if I’m not well rested. So I’ll push my run back to later in the day and catch an extra hour if I need it rather than trying to go all day running on fumes.
Delegate and ask for help
I like control and doing things my way, especially with my babies. It’s hard for me to give up time with them but I have a babysitter coming once a week that has been a huge help. I also rely heavily on my husband for help around the house. We have always shared duties and I know I wouldn’t be doing everything I’m doing without all the work he does.
Simplify meals and snacks
We’re repeating more meals these days since baby J came along. We stick to foods we always have on hand that are fast, healthy and please everyone. Eggs are a staple. Frozen veggies add nutrients to meals on crazy days. Black bean pasta or quinoa pasta with pesto or sauce. Salmon and sweet potatoes. Tofu or chicken stir fry. Stonyfield yogurt for smoothies or snacks with banana and chia.
Alternate bedtime duties
We take turns putting the kids to bed. Some nights it is still a two person job, but most of the time we’re now able to switch off and on so that we each get some quiet down time (or work time) before we finish cleaning up the kitchen and any evening plans begin.
Now that the weather is a bit nicer, I can get in some of my runs with baby J in the stroller. I prep dinner while making L’s after school snack and hearing about her day. I clump errands around the time we need to pick up or drop off L to be as efficient as possible. I sneak in strength training all day long. I cut back on social media time when I have work to do- multitasking does not usually equal efficiency on the computer!
On long run days, I don’t worry about my milk supply any longer. I plan to use extra milk from the freezer until it bounces back up, or I will occasionally supplement with formula on those days. I don’t need the stress of wondering if she is getting enough. I still try to pump most evenings after she is in bed but if it doesn’t happen, I don’t sweat it.
A Quiet Moment
I NEED some peace and quiet to recharge. If I don’t get it all day, I go to bed early enough to read a little bit. If I don’t get some down time, I slowly start to fall apart. I need time to reset my own spirit (loving Jesus Calling right now- I know I’m a few years behind but it’s really speaking to me right where I’m at).
What are your strategies for staying balanced and caring for you?
How do you know when you’ve taken on too much?