Before I even had Grayson I was nervous about the toddler years. How do you take care of a tiny person who wants to be independent, gets into everything, and can be overly emotional all the time? I was never really worried about having a newborn, but a toddler was a different story. Little did I know that being a runner prepared me for being a toddler mom!
Ok, so in many ways you can really never be completely prepared for any given age of your kids. You won’t really know what you need until you experience it. And in case it’s not obvious, this post is just for fun. I feel like I need to just put that out there.
How Being a Runner Prepared Me for Being a Toddler Mom
I own the right wardrobe
Leggings, sweatpants, and hoodies? That works me it. It’s also perfect for chasing around a toddler. No one has time for wearing nice clothes that are just going to get covered in food or who knows what else.
I always have snacks on hand
These days we don’t really go anywhere, but in general I always have a few snacks in my bag. And if you have a toddler, you know they usually can’t go more than approximately 1 hour without eating something.
We can both eat all day long
Going along with what I just said, snacks are a regular occurrence at home, too. So are multiple meals. I eat a snack before I work out and a meal afterwards. Grayson eats breakfast when he wakes up and then has what I call “breakfast part 2” after we get back from my run. Anytime I have a snack, he needs one too.
I’m an early riser
Luckily Grayson has always been a good night sleeper and a pretty decent napper, but he has always been an early riser. From the time he was like 2 months old he started sleeping through the night, but that would be 7 or 8 pm to 4 am. Once he was up at 4 it was impossible to get him to go back to sleep for hours. Luckily I am used to waking up at 4am. It was not ideal when I would be trying to put him back to sleep from 4 am to 7 am and then be up for the day, but I was prepared for it. Once we got him sleeping to 6 I could start working out in the morning again, but even now it’s very rare than he sleeps later than 6.
Thanks to long runs during marathon training, I mastered the art of being able to take a nap. Now I rarely have time to take a nap, but when I do it is amazing. Of course this only happens when Grayson is napping. His nap time is sacred around here and I do everything I can to make sure he naps well every day. Not gonna lie, it was a very sad day when he went from 2 naps to 1. I felt like I lost a good chunk of my productivity time.
I can keep up with all the running
Toddlers never stop moving, running, and climbing. They are FAST. Luckily I am in good enough shape to keep up with it all (usually). It really is exhausting.
I have a cool set of toys
How many other non-runner moms have a set of foam rollers and balls that second as toys? These are generally seen as off-limits so when I take them out and let him play with them he thinks its a special treat. He loves to push the stability ball around the basement.
I am strong and balanced
Grayson hasn’t been weighed since his 18 month visit 3 months ago, but I can tell you that he has definitely gained a few pounds since then. My mom likes to describe him as “solid”. I’m glad I lift weights but even still, carrying him around is not easy, especially on one side. Having good balance is key so that I don’t fall over while holding him and trying to multi-task.
I have an outlet for stress
Let’s face it, being a mom is stressful. Especially having a toddler who is into everything and thinks he can do whatever he wants and hates being told “no”. It’s a very fun age but also a tiring one. Thank goodness I have running to help me deal with stress! It also gives me time alone (if I run without him) or something for us to do together outside (if I take him in the stroller).
Being a runner can prepare you for lots of things in life. I never thought being a runner would prepare me for being a toddler mom, but I guess it did!
Now it’s time for the Runners’ Roundup! Link up your running and fitness posts below! Join myself, Coach Debbie Runs, Confessions of a Mother Runner, Runs with Pugs , and Laura Norris Running to post your favorite running tips, experiences, race and training recaps, workouts, gear, and coaching ideas.