From the inimitable Jen Sinkler
Being a woman who lifts weights automatically makes you open to weird comments (as does being a mom of “a lot” of kids) and over the last decade (!!!) of hoisting iron, I’ve got more than my fair share. Here are some of my personal favorites:
“Are you a lady Marine?” (No, but thank you!)
“You used to have such a cute little runner’s body! Do you miss it?” (Are you calling me big?)
“I think it’s cool that you lift, just don’t turn into a dude okay?” (No sex change operation says no worries on that front)
“Haha I’d hate it if my girlfriend was stronger than me hahaha!” (Hahah I’d hate it if I were your girlfriend too, hahaha!)
“Don’t want to run into you in a dark alley!” (Good. Don’t.)
“You’re going to hurt yourself.” (Distinct possibility with this girl!)
“You must be a bodybuilder.” (There are reasons for a girl to lift weights besides being a competitive body builder.)
“Weight lifting doesn’t burn enough calories to count as a real workout.” (Erm, calorie burn is not the best nor even the only measure of a quality workout.)
If I could change one thing about myself to be whatever I wanted it to be – laws of nature be darned – I’d make it so I could make that *blink blink* noise that cartoon characters do when they blink their eyes in surprise or disbelief or heartbreak (probably over the fact that their mouths only form one syllable: waaaoooohhhhh).
“Mom? Why can’t I have a BB gun? I promise not to shoot anyone… above the knees.” *blink blink*
“Oh, I’m sorry, you can’t use the kettlebells without a personal trainer. You might accidentally let it fly through the window.” *blink blink*
“Why are these screws left over? Ah well, the table stands fine without ’em.” *blink blink*
See? How awesome would that be?! I’d never have to say anything of import ever again!
Have you seen these?! Adidas unveiled their new “springblade” running shoes this week and I’m kind of dying to try* them. From my highly (non)scientific analysis, they seem to be based on the same principle behind the carbon fiber “blade” prosthetics used by Oscar Pistorious in the Olympics. And I remember a big hullabaloo at the time about how they made him “inhumanly” fast which is why I totally want to try these shoes. Even though Oscar Pistorious is a total d-bag and these are made out of plastic and… oh don’t rain on my parade. They’re kinda pretty in a weird, funky way, no? Sort of like a cross between track spikes, those Kangaroo bouncy shoes and those little plastic doohickeys we used in the 80’s to make hook rugs. LOVE. (Both the shoes and the rugs. I was seriously into hooking – of the rug variety – as a kid.)
Boom! Science in action. (P.S. I have sooooo totally done this. And the group crouch. I don’t know why. )
Ever felt that there’s got to be more to gaining and losing weight than just calories in/calories out? Well, it turns out the American Medical Association agrees with you. In a surprising and controversial decision – they actually went against the recommendation of their own board set up to study this issue for the past year – the AMA announced last Tuesday that they are now officially classifying obesity as a “disease” in its own right rather than just a contributing factor to other diseases like diabetes and heart disease. The semantics are important as this implies that there’s a medical dysfunction involved in weight gain and is not just a product of “eating too much and exercising too little.”
The kids are as excited as if it’s Christmas Eve, except this time they’re getting like the most expensive Christmas present ever. Hope they appreciate their father and I enslaving ourselves to 30 years of debt for them! (I’m not above using mom guilt to get them to remember to stop peeing on the toilet seat!)
Tomorrow’s the day we escape from the hotel and move into our new house here in Colorado! After a few minor glitches (and one kind of major one that made me dramatically despair that we were going to lose my dream house), and a whole lotta paper signing, we now own a little house on a little lot in a little town at the foot of some very, very big mountains. And I love everything about it!
Of course there are definitely some fun things we’ll miss about hotel living. Like the do-it-yourself waffle maker at the free breakfast every morning. Son #3 had so much fun doing this every! single! day! that I’m contemplating getting him one for his birthday in a few weeks…
Well this would solve my problem, I guess. Good thing they specified it’s the men’s toilet though – just as I was dreaming about standing and peeing…
The Zoo Incident started out innocently enough with my kids and I deciding to enjoy a beautiful Colorado day by checking out the new baby zebra at the Denver zoo last week. Like the good mom I (sometimes) am, I started off our adventure by trekking them all to the zoo restroom to ward off the evil sprites of My Brother Smells Like Poo, I Drank The Whole Water Bottle And Now I’m Sorry and – everyone’s fave – My Legs Are Wet And I Have No Idea How That Happened. With no family restroom available I sent the three boys (11-, 9-, and 7- years old) into the men’s as I hopped outside the door like a perv with a hand sanitizer fetish. (And let’s be honest, I kinda do. The only way I can ensure my kids have washed their hands is to make them hold them up so I can smell them. Such a fun little ritual for them to remember me by when I’m gone and they’re grown!)
Weird mom encounters at the park: Someone should write that book. After all the weird things I’ve seen go down in public spaces designed for children yet that manage to also make their parents (sometimes) act like children, heck, I should write that book. And it happened again the other day. While I am usually pretty good about letting this kind of thing roll off my back – if I had a quarter for every time someone threw shade at my parenting I could buy my own swing set – this time I’m having a hard time letting it go. I think it’s because it’s about Jelly Bean. Say what you will about me but please, for the love of regurgitated fish crackers, leave my kids out of it.
I think another mom called my baby girl fat. But maybe I’m overreacting?
There we were in the park, two women thrown together simply because of our cabin-fevered children, chatting about routine kid things. Then out of the blue she asked me what size Jelly Bean wears. Without thinking much about it, I answered, “Six.”
“How many kids do you have?” is such a loaded question for me, for any mother who’s lost a child. And yet, being new, it’s one I’ve had to answer a lot lately. Normally I do some mental math and if the questioner is someone who I won’t likely see again sometimes I’ll just say “four” to avoid making our encounter awkward. But if they are someone who I think will be a part of my life I answer “five” because to know me is to know I had another daughter, once. One that I lost (much) and loved (more). Recently a group of women asked me that question and I wasn’t prepared so I stumbled over my answer. (The math is so much harder when there are multiples!) “Five,” I said and then corrected myself. “Four.” My heart hurt. “I mean five.”
“Well which is it?” one lady asked, clearly baffled as to how I could not know how many children had erupted from my nethers. “Four or five?”
“Five,” I said finally. “I had another daughter. Our oldest. But she died.” The simplest explanation is usually the best. I just wish I was more confident in saying it. You’d think I would be after ten+ years.
Turkey, provolone and tomato on whole wheat “flat bread” (because… flat is so much healthier than poofy?) with mustard and mayo: Today I made a sandwich in the shower. Nah, I didn’t have a weird craving for soggy bread – it was courtesy of my two youngest children who while they can easily undo a buckle, three zippers and a magnetic clasp to find the gum in my purse, couldn’t figure out how to open the shrink-wrapped sandwich goodies and condiments. They were also terribly impatient and aren’t old enough to care about seeing mom naked, not to mention terribly pleased with themselves that they had the foresight to bring it all to me – in the shower – including a plastic knife with which to spread the mayo. So I just went with it. Living with children makes every day a Seinfeld episode.
What does it say about me that I was just so glad they hadn’t used my shower time to sneak down to the lobby and fill their pockets with free cans of soda (again) that I happily made them a steamy sandwich? And then let them eat it in front of the TV? Watching Spongebob?? IS NOTHING HOLY ANYMORE?!?
Choosing a new gym here in Colorado has been one of my top priorities since we moved here. I know that may sound silly to some of you but for me the gym is basically my second home. (Okay third home, church is my second home although since we’re technically not in our home-home yet maybe it gets bumped up the list?) It’s where I workout, yes, but it’s also where I make friends, where my kids learn to operate in our community, where I learn new things and try new things, where I do research and where I have fun. Honestly, while my morning (lung-popping) runs and hotel-bathroom yoga and red rock hikes and park playouts and FitnessGlo workouts have been good in the interim the truth is that I’m a very social person and I don’t like working out on my own.
So I made a list of what I need in a gym:
1. Clean, safe facility within 15 minutes of my house. (No coyotes allowed!)
2. Great childcare. My kids are too young to be left alone and so if I don’t have childcare I basically don’t get to workout.