Finding My Personal Best: Chicago Marathon or Bust

Last week I wrote about my struggle with finding balance as a parent of two young kids. What I wanted? Time to work out. I want to get back in shape!

I know a lot of you out there like to do the same – Work out to relieve stress, get time away, train for events or just make those summer clothes fit a little better.

Join in and link up. Let’s make this a conversation.
Whether you’re training for an Ironman or just trying to get to the gym three times per week, a lot of it comes back to the same thing: motivation.

Each Monday, come on by to link up. Whatever your workout or fitness goal of choice, tell us about it.

I’ll post about how my training is going, obstacles, achievements and any tips for finding time or shortcuts I find along the way. I encourage you to do the same. Post in the comments, link up your blog posts about your training – Whatever works for you.

Here’s the scoop on me:

Goal
Complete the 2011 Chicago Marathon in October as an American Cancer Society DetermiNation Athlete.

Obstacles (with a side of excuses)
(1) Time is my biggest struggle – and more precisely, time without the kids. My husband is gone most of the time during the week between travel and long hours.

It’s difficult to find the right time when the kids are awake to be thrown in the double jogger without eating up the “good windows” I have to actually do things with them. Also, as training distances get longer, I tap out on how far I can actually go with the stroller.

(2) Childcare: We don’t have family readily available to take care of the kids, and sitters are both difficult to find and expensive.

Motivation
(1) I need it for myself. I am home with my kids all day. This is how I burn off stress, get some time for myself and try to be healthy.

(2) It makes me a better parent. Time for myself means that I’m a happier soul when I am with my kids. I know guilt about time away can be a big hurdle to committing to training for an event, but if the up-side is a more present and energetic parent, I consider that to be a win-win.

(3) It’s the example I want to set for my kids. I want my kids to learn from an early age what a healthy lifestyle looks like. I know what it’s like to try to undo years of stagnant and unhealthy living, and I don’t want that for them. I also want them to understand that charity and civic responsibility are the responsibility of each of us.

(4) A good cause. Running for the American Cancer Society is central to running for me. It’s a cause close to my heart, having lost a number of family members and friends to this disease. There is nothing more inspiring to me out on the race course than seeing people’s ribbons, shirts and pictures telling the stories of why they’re running. Seeing DetermiNation athletes along the way give me the added push I need.

I hope you’ll join in each Monday. What is your goal? Next week, come on by to link up!