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My #1 Priority

Hi friends!  So the week isn’t even half way over and I’m exhausted.  This week is so busy!  A birthday party, parent/teacher conferences, play dates, one dentist appointment, two doctor appointments, several appointments with my realtor to look at homes, school registration forms due (for next year — already!?), summer camp deadlines…..the list goes on.  Plus all of the regular running around we do.  Bummer.  All I really want to do is finish decorating for Spring!  I’ve made some simple changes and my house is feeling so festive!  I can’t wait to finish.

So it’s after 9:00 and the first time I’m sitting down for the day.  I did want to do a quick post about my exercise routine though because so many of you have asked and have been very patient to wait for an answer.  I mentioned before that exercise is a priority for me.  It’s important to me for several reasons.  First the obvious reason — keeping my skinny jeans from busting at the seams.  But I also make it a priority each day because I love and enjoy exercise.  It makes me happy.  Must be all those endorphins!?  I love to have a little “me time” in the morning to get lost in my music and work up a good sweat.  Then I feel better about myself and I make better food choices.  It just helps me start the day off right and I am a MUCH better/happier mom if I’ve exercised.  And if mom’s happy, everyone is happy, right?  :)

My workout routine varies depending on the situation with my kids.  When Ellie was a baby I would get up and strap her in the baby jogger and we would walk/run together.  Sometimes we’d walk with a friend and sometimes it would just be the two of us.

What a doll.  :)  Ellie was 6 months old in these pictures (2004).  She would usually fall asleep during our walk and take her morning nap in the jogger.  I did this every day until she turned about 15 months old when she just wouldn’t sit still for me in the jogger anymore.  That’s when I joined a good gym with a great day care set up.  Until Addison was born I took Ellie every morning to the gym and would do an hour of aerobics while she played.  That worked out great….and then baby #2 came along. 

Upgraded the baby jogger to the double BOB jogger (LOVE this stroller by the way.  By far the smartest and most used baby purchase we ever made).  By this time Ellie was two and could look at books and sit still in the stroller again.  Addison was a month old in this picture when I started walking each morning with the two of them.  Same morning routine – waking and running with the jogger until Addison was older (I think around 9 months) and then I started going to the gym again.

If I can make it work with my schedule to do a morning aerobics class, that is my favorite.  I LOVE aerobics.  I danced my whole life all the way through college and aerobics gives me my “dance fix.”  I love Kick Boxing, Hip Hop, Step, Zumba (anyone tried this?  It’s SO fun)…anything cardio that gets you moving.  I’ve always thought it would be a blast to teach aerobics classes someday.  If I go to the gym at a time when there isn’t a class, I get on the treadmill for 30 minutes, the elliptical for 15 minutes, and then do weights for another 15 minutes.  (I’m a cardio junkie but HATE weights.)  Nothing fancy, but that is my routine for the gym.

Right now, I just can’t make it to the gym.  I’m currently still in the “year of the baby” which translates to mean “survival mode.”  Currently my family all wakes up around 6:30 a.m.  I get Kole fed and changed, the girls dressed and fed, hair done, and lunches made.  Kenny takes Ellie to school on his way to work around 7:30.  I throw on my gym clothes, slick my hair back in a ponytail, and 20 minutes after they leave I take Addison to pre-school.  Then I come home and put Kole down for his morning nap and hop on the treadmill in my garage.  It’s not ideal (I’d much rather work out at the gym) but my motto with exercise has always been that something is better than nothing.  I make that 30 minutes count.  I blast my workout mix on my i pod and walk really fast up a huge grade (like I’m walking up a big hill).  I hold 2 pound weights and punch the air while I walk.  Yes, you heard me.  I practice my kickboxing punches while I walk — forward jab, cross jab, upper cut…  I look like a total dork!  Kenny walked in on me mid-workout once and laughed for 20 minutes.   Then for months he teased me by imitating my boxing moves.  He can laugh all he wants.  Deep down he knows he wouldn’t want to cross paths with me in a dark alley.

Two days a week Addison doesn’t have pre-school and is home with me all day.  On those days I get Ellie off to school, get Kole down for a nap, and turn on “Little Bear” for Addison.  She watches it for half an hour (exact time of my workout) and then we do some crunches and lunges together.  You don’t want to mess with Addison in a dark alley either.  ;)  As soon as I can hold Kole’s morning nap off a little longer I’ll start going to the gym again in the morning and taking the kids with me.

Like I said in my previous post – it’s all about priorities.  I try not to make appointments and schedule things early in the morning.  I like to exercise as soon as I possibly can because I know if I don’t do it early, it won’t happen.  A lot of days (especially lately) I exercise and then never even change out of my gym clothes.  Today was one of those days.  I stayed all sweaty in my gym clothes with no make-up on all day.  I was running around in ten different directions and didn’t get a chance to shower until 8:00 at night when all of my kids were in bed and asleep.  Oh well!  I got that 30 minutes of exercise time done this morning and that’s what matters to me!  Aside from keeping my kids fed and alive, exercise is my #1 priority.

K – I said that would be quick and instead it was long and boring!  I hope that post answered your questions.  If you have other questions, leave a comment and I’ll answer your questions in my comments too.  How many times did I just say “questions?”  It’s late.  And I need to get to bed because I have an early morning date with my treadmill.  :)

xoxo, Erin
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26 thoughts on “My #1 Priority

  1. my kids could never stand the gym daycare (or the church nursery!) i have an elliptical at home- i love to hop on and watch hulu- i do it during my youngest’s naptime. at first i dreaded it, but now i LOVE it. i am rewatching desperate housewives from season 1. fun!

  2. Erin,
    I am so glad that you did this post! I also make exercise a priority in my day but it hasn’t always been that way! When the kiddos were younger I walked and walked and ran a little with them in a jogging stroller. Now that they are older, 9 and 6, I work out at home. Have you seen informercials for TurboFire? I think you would love it! It’s like having an aerobics class at home. They are fun and challening and I have lost those extra pounds that just wouldn’t come off. Please check out my post:

    I do it to feel better and do better as a Mommy and wife. (and look good in my jeans)
    Have a great day!

  3. I am working on making exercise a priority in my day. I was able to do it when I was single…but somehow it didn’t transition to my life after marriage and children. I am so glad to know that I am not the only one that stays sweaty and gross in my workout clothes sometimes. I felt like a total loser about the fact that most days that is what I end up doing! So, thank you for that.

  4. Great post Erin! I had to laugh at the part about Kenny walking in and laughing – I can totally hear/see him harassing you like only Kenny can. I hope that I can do as well as you have after my little one arrives.

    Thanks for the sweet comment on my blog. I read The Help last summer and really liked it.


  5. Hey Erin! Just found your blog thru another blog and love it! I have a 19 mo old girl, and I too make exercise a top priority in the morning (or I won’t do it later in the day!). I find that I just feel so much better if I can get in a good workout. Have you looked into a Stroller Strides class in your area? It’s awesome because you can take the kids with you and do fun boot camp style exercises with other mommies, for an hour each day. Often times the younger babies nap while their mommies exercise. I usually do Stroller Strides on M,W,F and then run on the treadmill at home on Tues/Thurs while my daughter plays and dances to the hip hop music. And I totally agree on your comment about the Bob Stroller. I have the single Bob and will definitely get the double when we have another. Best purchase EVER and worth every penny!!

  6. I started reading your blog after you had Kole and prayed for you during that time. Since then, your blog has become a favorite of mine. I live in Tulsa, OK, but we had a job opportunity in San Diego a couple of years ago. My husband decided not to take it, but I am living what could’ve been my “San Diego life” through you! Ha! You have inspired me so much to get organized. In the last 2 weeks, I have done some major cleaning out and organizing of closets, cabinets and drawers and it feels so good. I am like you and function so much better when my life is in order, things are organized and I have a schedule! Thanks for giving me the kick I needed to get started on some long overdue projects! Also, thanks for showing us that through everything else you do, you can still make exercise a priority! I have let that slip in the last couple of months and I am feeling it (and my jeans are showing it)! :) I feel so much better when I exercise every day and have vowed to start making it a priority again today! Thanks again for the inspiration! If you can do it with 3 kids, I know I can do it with 2!

  7. I’m so with you on this Erin! It has to be my number one every day and I am a completely different mother and person when I exercise.

    You look amazing btw. Now I know it’s all those cross jabs you’re working on. (I hate weights too!)

    You realize you have pretty much made it through the YOTB, right?? Year of the baby, baby!! Woohoo!!!

    Remind me to tell you about the dream/nightmare I had last night.

  8. teacing aerobics is the best job! i did it all throughout college. basically, it’s getting paid to workout. it really was a blast! kickboxing was HUGE at the time. needless to say, that was my specialty. ;)

    right now i don’t belong to a gym (mainly b/c it’s so nice year round and i just workout outside…that or use the tiny gym in our complex). the one thing i really miss about having a gym membership is the aerobics classes. utah had the best ones!! there was even a hip hop class that was my favorite. growing up dancing from age 3, that’s my favorite way to burn some major calories.
    for now i workout from 630-730am running, doing bootcamp or yoga on the beach (all with friends!). the commitment with someone else always gets me out of bed…plus, the workouts are fun.
    so much more that i could say about this topic…but, i’ve already written a novel here.
    maybe we can talk more tonight. i’m really looking forward to celebrating with you!!

  9. That part about Kenny made me laugh hard. Cute! And funny! It made me laugh because I can totally see that happening with my husband – the long-running joke. :) Your routine seems to be working because you look great! -Erin

  10. Great post Erin! It even inspired me to go get my 30 minutes done while my guy was asleep. Yey! I admit that I have let the Southern Ontario snow “let me off the hook”. I do have indoor equipment that I should be using more often. I easily got rid of baby weight #2 and #3 but still need to work on #1. Thanks for the reminder that I do feel better and act better when I’ve taken care of that need. Have a great day!

  11. Sounds like you have a few great routines according to the season of your life which is good. I want to start an exercise routine and would love to start walking daily. As soon as all of the snow melts and the rain stops it’ll be time for me to get out there. My dream would be to be able to wake up early and do it first thing…maybe one day. Thanks for sharing your tips! I also had to laugh at Kenny laughing at you :)

  12. I’ve also discovered working out at home this year. It’s not perfect, but at least I do it this way! I also realized I need to do it as early as I can in the morning. that way, the day doesn’t get too crazy to avoid it, and I feel good the rest of the day! Haven’t worked it into my work schedule, though:(

  13. I was reading along and I thought double jogging stroller… check, gym membership… check, treadmill… check, exercise every day… nope and I have no other excuse than I just don’t make it a priority so thank you for telling us how you make it happen. Happy almost birthday on Friday! I only remember because ours is on the same day!


  14. Great post reminding us all to make exercise our number one priority! I always try and work out in the afternoon while the kids are napping/having quiet time. But it’s so easy to let it slide in the afternoon instead of working out in the morning. You’ve inspired me to look at my schedule again and see if I can get it done in the a.m.

    Also LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the double BOB. Best money I ever spent.

    Thanks for you’re inspiring blog!

  15. I really enjoy your blog a- found your blog through Clover Lane. I am trying to make routine changes here that include “me” time. SO important! With four little ones, it’s so difficult.
    I also wanted to say that the BOB is the best money I have spent on kid stuff (aside from ISR). I have a single and a double! LOVE them both!

  16. Erin, you’re so cool! I just found your blog (via Clover Lane) and I already love you. ;) I so admire your organization and routine–those are things that make me happy. I love your ideas.

    So, this is random, but: I have wood floors downstairs, what’s your favorite method of cleaning/mopping them? I’ve gone from one thing to another, and you seem like a girl who’d have a good answer. Thanks!

  17. I am a 6 day a week exerciser who is a mean person if I don’t get to sweat it out each morning. Sounds like you are similar. (except the mean part!) Glad we have our priorities straight!

  18. I am a 6 day a week exerciser who is a mean person if I don’t get to sweat it out each morning. Sounds like you are similar. (except the mean part!) Glad we have our priorities straight!

  19. Was going to wait up til 12 just so I could be the first to wish you a HAPPY BIRTHDAY!! Hope it is full of all of your favorites. And just to show you how much I love you…I have been saving my pantry all year so that you could celebrate your special day in your favorite way:) enjoy my friend!!

  20. I want a jogging stroller. It’s not in the budget right now but I desperately want one. I’m jogging with my regular stroller right now, and that’s just sad. :(

  21. Hi Erin, just wanted to say hi from Sunny Western Australia and tell you how much I love reading your blog it’s my favourite! :) You’ve inspired me over the past few months to make exercise and healthy eating a priority! It makes me feel so much better and allows me to be a better mummy :) By the way I also have an Ellie..great name :)

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