off center

my life is bonkers right now.

you know how your washing machine makes that alarming, pre-booming noise when it is lopsidedly loaded? there's that small chance that it will correct itself and find a healthy center again, but more likely this is the warning sound that precedes it getting even more off center, building in volume, and then starting to slam back and forth as if trying to walk out of the laundry nook like an evil autobot come to seek vengeance for ALWAYS being set to "super" sized load and cold water.

yeah that's me. i am the washing machine. i am slightly off center and if action isnt taken, i am about to straight run amok. ("amok, amok, amok!" hocus pocus, SJP pre-SATC, anyone?)

i am going to blame it on the running. life was crazy before, but adding this little nugget into the mix has skewed everything much further.

i have to run at night. the heat is atrocious here in GA (and everywhere else i am thinking). like, before 8 pm is not an option for a sissy like me. so lets say i get out the door at 8 (it's usually later). my runs are getting longer by necessity and therefore my times as well. so 6 miles takes me over an hour. by the time i finish i am SOAKED with sweat, covered with pieces of the bugs that make up a flying ant contagion that pelts me in the eyes, nose, mouth, hair, neck, arms, and down my sports bra NONSTOP as i run. i walk inside, grab my water bottle and head back out to chug it down and do a cool down walk.

then i come inside, check out my final times and stats (really nike+? i mean lance armstrong and dork nowitzski make sense for post-run pep talks, but tracy morgan?!?! luckily i am a fan, cause that makes no sense). then i sync the run online to our half marathon group's challenge (most miles in a month, i am currently in first by a smidge).

i go get in the tub (finding at least 12 more bugs when i am getting undressed...luckily they die instantly upon contact with me so i am just dealing with corpses...hmmm, is that better?). after about 10 minutes of just laying there recovering i am ready to actually get clean (weird fact: i only take baths. the only time i take showers in my house is postpartum when tubs arent allowed or if it's a shower for two. whoops.)

by the time i am clean, dry, dressed, and all the beet-red has left my face, it is at least 10 pm. if i was smart, i didnt eat dinner before the run (even eating at 5:30 will hurt me when i run at 8; i need to run on a 4 or 5 hour empty stomach for best results). so it's 10 and i have to find something to eat. here are some of my recent post-run meals: raisin bran crunch, 1.5 PBJ's, orange jasmine rice, and chips and salsa. this is not prime fare.

i try to catch up on dishes or laundry a little bit at this point before bed. i used to go to sleep around 9:30 every night because i am a certified sleep-lush. now 11 pm is early for me.

this wouldnt be so bad if i didnt also have a husband, an etsy shop, a savior, and a blog that i would reeeeeally like to devote some attention to in my non-parenting/non-working hours. the last thing i am feeling before i pass out each night is usually guilt for not responding to someone's email/text/phonecall/blog comment or dread that there is something really important that i have let slide or completely forgotten, an etsy order, a birthday, a CHILD.

the good news is that winter is coming. yes that is good news (and the tagline of my favorite dragon-book family). when it stops being >85 degrees around the clock, i wont have to give up 100% of my evenings to running. can you even imagine running in the daylight without melting? i cant. i took up running on april 18th, so i got about 10 days of pretty weather before the GA heat and humidity draped me in their loving wet woolen blanky and declared, "ha ha! try to run now, bee-yatch!"

the idea of running right when i get home from work and the kids are still napping and having the whole night ahead of me is like trying to imagine heaven. cant do it, never been there. sounds AWESOME, but i have only ever lived in a much inferior place. the place of summer running. dramatic? yes, please.

hear me now: i will NEVER complain about running in the cold. never ever ever (note: remind me of this when i do).

but this is the worst. if i can do it now, i can do it during the other 3 seasons. and i think it might be worth it. numerically, i dont weigh much less than when i started. i dont think my fat/muscle makeup has shifted that much either. but i do feel so much better about myself. i have worn shorts more in the last 2 months than in the last 3 years combined. is there still jiggle? sho-nuff. but i can look people in the eye and know that i am doing something about it.

putting myself through this physical, emotional and time-management ringer has taken the shame out of not being totally happy with how i look. the flaws may still be there, but i dont feel like i need to stuff them into jeans and be miserable and embarrassed because i'm not doing anything about it. that's a big deal. the mental side of body-issues is where all the power lies, so the fact that this running has blasted away a good portion of my mental cellulite feels even better than if it had burned off the real stuff. it's even worth feeling like my life is a little out of control right now.

i think the real solution is that same one we use for our off-kilter washing machine: i just need jesse to come sit on me for a while so i can stabilize again.


  1. Soooo inspiring!! The fact that you started at the worst time of the year and STUCK WITH IT is so encouraging to me as I contemplate starting some form of post-8-babies-exercise myself. One of the reasons I have decided to pause this baby making factory is to take better care of myself, starting with eating and exercise.
    And I love your remedy for your problems! You are way more hilarious than you realize.

  2. Last line of the post..perfection!

  3. I keep promising myself I will NEVER complain about running in the cold weather. Nothing can be like this. Then I got a email catalogue for St. Jude's official running gear for the race and there are winter hats involved. I'll confess, it made me a little nervous.

    Also, nervous about losing daylight as we lose temperature. We're in the far West side of the CST, so we are dark an hour earlier than y'all. Our sun is set here by 8ish already and by 4 in December.

    Still, anything has to be better than stoping for a walk break and realizing that you only stopped because you were hot and not tired and it's just as hot when you walk - maybe hotter. Nothing like sucking hot air. Ugh.

    You're rocking this Keight. Your drive and commitment is so impressive to me - you are the most hard core for sure! Especially since you are juggling kids and work with it all. Mental cellulite be gone!

  4. Mad, mad props to you. I am BARELY fitting 3 days of running around my job and kids, so I am amazed you can do this daily. And also mad props to your husband, because I know it has been a sacrifice for my husband to support my running and pick up extra slack w the kids/house. Good guys we have! I'm also a little glad your life is going crazy because of this, because mine is too and it's so nice not to be alone in the insanity.

  5. First of all, I laughed so much while reading this and loved the comparison to an unbalanced washing machine!
    Second of all, I'm so impressed you've been able to start and stick with it in this heat! It's encouraging that c25k worked so well for you. I start week 7 on my next run, so hopefully by the end I can say the same. Keep it up!

  6. Oh you got me with that last sentence. Bahaha!!!

    And I will never complain again about the heat here in MA. You are so inspiring to me. I can barely get out the door and I DO NOT have on my plate even close to as much as you have on yours. It would help, though, if my husband was home before 8 or 9 lately and I had a warm body to hang with my sleeping kids so I could beat the dark, hmmm. Seriously though. You go girl. We can do this.

  7. have you tried any running water bottles? I got one right before I stopped running this pregnancy and ran with it about 3 times. I loved that thing! You almost forget that it is there, until you need a drink. Just a thought on trying to stay hydrated during your night runs.

    I started running last June. We live in AL, so it's pretty darn hot here, too. But, like Rae, the sun sets an hour earlier here. I use that to my advantage. I actually like running in the dark in the summer. At least you don't feel like the sun is burning you all the way to your insides.

  8. Still hilarious after all this time...I think I'll just publish your musings and make all the money.