Tuesday, April 7, 2015

No time to train?


"I'm too busy to workout". 
"I don't have time to workout". 
"I don't have time to train for a marathon..a half marathon..." 

Everyone has an excuse why they can't workout, why they can't run. Marathon training? Ain't nobody got time for that...


Actually, yes some of us do...actually all of us do...it's all about priorities.

Finding time to run and to train for a race is all about priorities. 20 years ago, I started running to fight depression and anxiety. Running got me through some tough times. It still does. I'm afraid to stop. In fact, running is part of who I am. I can't imagine life without running.

I get asked all the time how I find time to run. In the past 5 years, I've trained for 11 half marathons (currently training for #12) and 2 full marathons. I also work full time and am the married mother of 2 teenage boys.

Wouldn't it be nice to have nothing to do during the day but workout and blog? That would be my dream life. That, and living at the beach. Sadly, I have to pay the bills.

I like to race too. Racing is a great way to check in with my progress, to push myself, to set goals and achieve them. I won't sugarcoat it, marathon training is time consuming, but as a busy working mom, I'm proof that not only can you do it, you can do it well. And it is definitely worth the effort. That feeling of accomplishment carries itself off the road and into your everyday life. Just ask any busy mother runner.

Oh wait...I did!

The tribe: Michelle, Sara, Me, Penny, and Karen
I called on my #tribe to contribute to this post. We are 5 busy moms and among us we have all run multiple marathons. 3 have completed ultras. 4 of us also have running blogs! And on top of it all, we find time to get together for some much needed #tribe time. I love these ladies. They make me better. And that's the truth.

thismommaruns.net
Here's their advice:

Sara aka Cheesy Runner Mom: I find time to train for a marathon as a mother of young children by making my training as invisible as possible to my family. I do this by waking up early and logging miles on the treadmill prior to waking up my kids for school, and logging any outside weekday miles on the three mornings per week my youngest is in preschool. My only "visible" training is on one weekend morning per week, where I log a long run or run a race. My husband is willing to drive carpool and hold down the home front for a few hours, because it doesn't impact his life the rest of the week. I am always conscious of how my training affects my family, and with these compromises, I have found both harmony on the home front and success in meeting my training obligations.

Karen aka Trading in My Heels: When I start training for a marathon or ultra, I sit down and discuss it with my family. You must be willing to be somewhat selfish with your training. This means being gone for 3-4 days a week and up to 4 hours during long training runs. I need to make sure my kids are ok with this before I can commit to training for an endurance distance.

Penny formerly known as 26.yikes: Extend the same level of commitment you give to your family, work, friends to yourself and your training. That means even when you don't feel like going for your schedule training run, you do it anyway. How many times as a mom have you felt like you couldn't nurture a minute more, but you do it anyway? Yes, that. Do that in training and you will succeed.

Michelle aka This Momma Runs: Ultimately you have to want to make the time for yourself and your training even if the timing isn't perfect. It's a commitment that impacts everyone around me. Since my husband also trains we spend a lot of time working on our "schedule". It changes every week as we try to not impact our children and their commitments. The majority of my runs and swims are done after my daughters go to sleep. I want to be there to tuck them in, so I prioritize my time. I don't love running at 9 pm or even later, but for right now that's what works for our lives so that's what I do.



And me: Make your training as much of a priority as you do your family and your job. When my boys were little, I used to get up and run at 430 am to get it done before my husband had to leave for work at 6. Sure, it was me, the newspaper delivery people, and the skunks. Now, I'll still get up before the sun if I have a long run on the plan and I have to work. On the weekends, I get up early to get my long runs in before everyone gets up so I don't interfere with any family activities. Yep, sometimes you have to go to bed early. Sometimes you don't get a full 8 hours of sleep. Plan ahead. Lay out your running clothes the night before. My coffee is in the pot and ready to brew for the morning. Be stronger than your excuses.

This is your pep talk! You can do this!




How do you find time to run? To train?

I'm linking up with Tuesdays on the Run: MCM mama, Run the Great Wide Somewhere, and My No Guilt Life. This is a great topic and I'm sure the other bloggers have some good advice...

74 comments :

  1. I love getting up early to run. Last weekend when I came back my husband said, "You were gone a long time." Um, yeah, it takes an hour and a half to run 9 miles. I love the first quote and agree that it does come down to priorities, and also realizing what you do spend your free time on.

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    1. There's just something special and amazing about those early morning runs. For me, it's the perfect way to start the day.

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  2. I am lucky to work three days a week and generally during the school year do my longer runs during the week. On weekends I take my kids to my parent's house or another family member (I have 9 close family households in a 10 mile radius) so they get to visit family, play with cousins etc, and I get to run. They often tell me I don't run long enough. I do notice sometimes my daughter thinks I run too much. I really try to not make it too much of a focus though. My husband used to resent my running time, but I really try to not make it an impact on him and he has learned to deal with it better too. It is just part of who I am

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    1. My husband used to resent my running time too, but now he realizes how important it is to me and my sanity.

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  3. Early morning is the answer to most of my scheduling dilemmas. My kids emailed me the that's how she does it comic a few years ago :)

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  4. I became a morning person 3 years ago because that was the only time I had available to consistently train. I now often have double workouts but now that I am motivated by the race goals I find a way to make it work.

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    1. That's being flexible! We do what we have to do to get it done!

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  5. Great post, and great to hear the advice of other runners! Training does have to become a priority if you want to do it well! It's so important to make sure your family is on your side!

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  6. Great topic--and I totally agree. If it's a priority, we can make the time. Early morning alarm clocks are my best friend, as is my passion for the sport. I just don't want to miss runs, period!

    And I just glanced over at your book list, btw: we like so many of the same titles! I need to get in on your book chats!

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    1. The Boston marathon book linkup goes live next Monday; it's a quick read, so jump in!

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  7. This is such a great post! I love all this advice! It really is all about priorities. As a full time working mom I have to make sacrifices in order to get my training in. In my case that sacrifice is sleeping in. I'm out the door to run before anyone in my house is awake (and generally back before they are too). It works for me and my family and plus I get the bonus of feeling those endorphins all day. :)

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    1. I don't even know what it would be like to sleep in anymore! I wake up before my alarm goes off most days.

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  8. Love this post, Wendy! I'm not a mom so I don't have to worry about scheduling my runs around kids, but I do generally try to get in my workouts early in the morning before I have a lot of other stuff to do. It's all about finding the right time to fit your schedule and then sticking to it!

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  9. I can't wait until I feel like I am injury free. I miss not having a training plan or set days to run!

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    1. That's so hard! Last year at this time, I was in the boot.

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  10. I've heard the "no time" excuse endlessly. I've also been accused of having "no life". Where there's a will there's a way.

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    1. I know, I hear it all the time (from non-runners)! Just heard it from one of my partners today.

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  11. I see at lot of 430 wake up times when I start marathon training in a few months!

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  12. I'm thankful that I have a very understanding husband who knows that if I didn't run, I'd be a basketcase. He gets me so he knows that this is important to me. He does a lot of the behind the scene work so that I can run. Love him for it! A happier me means a happier us! :)

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    1. Mine gets it too. He doesn't always love it, but he's always supportive.

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  13. It comes down to priorities and running is mine.

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  14. Wow that's powerful - I would say I agree with making my "training" and workouts as invisible as possible to MY family so there is no disruption. Sometimes it works and sometimes I do not get it in because it will interfere with homework check or meal preparation but I try my best. Great advice!!! I need to get with my tribe soon. Perhaps I will host something. Thanks for the inspiration!

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  15. When I was running regularly I would run in the morning before my kids woke up. This is a great post! I love that ultimately it's about making time for ones self!

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    1. I think it's important to take care of ourselves too!

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  16. Early mornings are def my thing, love the way it feels to accomplish something first thing, sets the tone!

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  17. I truly believe that you will find time to do what is important to you and that lesser things can be put off till another day. And that in a nutshell is how I get my training done!

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  18. I'm with ya, Wendy; make time to get it done! My alarm went off at 3:55 this morning and I got it just over six miles at the track, then PT exercises, stretching, breakfast and out the door at 7 to make it to work by 7:30! It definitely can be done...if a person really wants to do it. :)

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    1. Oh, now that's early! But you're right, you can do it...if you want to!

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  19. I'm not a mom (yet), but I've been gaining as much wisdom as I can before the babies start coming. My biggest fear is not having time, but I know those are just excuses. Thank you for sharing these tips as I'll refer to them when that time comes. Now I need to work on being a morning "workout/run" person. I do love running in the mornings...it's so peaceful!

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  20. Amen to this post! Love it. And hey, I am currently training for #12 half/# 3 full...how cool are we?! <3

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  21. Love this! Such great tips! I don't have kids, but I do have a full time job and what I'd like to think is a decent social life. I like to get my runs in first thing in the morning before everyone else is up and going and then I can enjoy my day just like anyone else. If I have an early work meeting, that just means going to bed earlier the night before so I can get up and go before work.

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  22. Love this post and I love that your "tribe" helped as well. Very good advice! I think it not only is important but it is essential to take time out for yourself if that means for a yoga class or marathon training. You have to want it and make yourself a priority. A pet peeve of mine is hearing someone say I don't have time. I know several people who get up and are at the gym taking a class, teaching or working out before 6AM. Thats crazy but hey at the end of the day, they got it done! My hats off to them! You have got to find your time! Thanks for this! :)

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  23. Life is all about balance and finding a way to fit everything in.

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  24. I think early morning workouts would be the key to maintaining a regular workout schedule for me--now that I have dry shampoo in my life, this may actually work out! :] I'm gonna try to implement it! :P

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  25. Great ideas! I think that making it a priority is the best tip! Thanks for linking up with us today!

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  26. Being a mama to three littles and training for my first marathon I have put lots of these great tips into practice. Always willing to move my training run to a time that fits best for our family and I have talked with my husband. There are weeks he is frustrated with how the house is or how much I am running and not home but he knows its a dream and supports it. Just 4 weeks left!

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  27. You started running to fight anxiety / depression......I didn't even realize that I wasn't fully happy or had a problem until I started to run....then all these suppressed emotions came to surface and got dealt with, and I've never been happier.....thanks for this post, and for the other running mama blog suggestions to check out!
    www.momontherunsanity.com

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  28. Such good suggestions! My husband and I used to have to do the early morning running shuffle so we could both get our runs in while one of us was at home with our sons. Now that they are grown and on their own, we have the luxury of running together whenever we want to!

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    1. That's so nice! My husband doesn't run, but he sure understands my need to!

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    1. It's juggling those priorities that can be tough!

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  30. Very motivating! We dont find the time we make the time. Exercise is the most underutilized drug.

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  31. I like the idea of making it "invisible" - that's definitely what I try to do. Sometimes Oliver will ask me to go run on the weekends because he knows that means extra TV time when Dad is left in charge. :)

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    1. I don't know if I'm making my training invisible but for sure I try to be unobtrusive!

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  32. For me... my best advice for making time to train... is to make training a priority and put it on the calendar like you would an appointment. :)

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  33. I like Michelle's comment of "Ultimately you have to want to make the time for yourself and your training even if the timing isn't perfect." That continues to apply well after the years of having young children at home! I did not train in a sport when my children were young but I did (sometimes) stay in shape. It required is cooperation and coordination with my husband and things like getting up while everyone else was asleep.

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    1. It's definitely more difficult to find time to train when the kids are little--and I think Michelle nailed it. Yep, up before the sun, out after everyone's sleeping...it's tough but it's possible!

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  34. Great post! Thanks for sharing!!! I agree that you have to make marathon training a priority!

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    1. Any fitness activities need to be a priority, really!

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  35. The invisible thing is so true. I always try to do my run when no one's around to miss me!

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  36. I totally agree. I am constantly saying that early morning runs at 5 AM are the ONLY time my running passion doesn't really effect my family. I do get my long run in in Saturdays... But I'm usually out the door by 6. -Gina

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