Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Back to school, back to a schedule

In Fit Family I write about scheduling exercise so it is part of your routine. Though my husband and I are pretty good at having informal conversations about when we'll exercise on our own and with our kids, I realized that it has been a couple of weeks since we've all been out together. We've been on vacation and to a wedding and we've been out of our routine at home. 

So yesterday while Tom was at school preparing for his new students, the girls and I and our dog, Abby, went on a hike. The air had the first hint of fall in it and our border collie was so excited that she was doing laps, running ahead and then coming back to us. (You think your kids don't get enough exercise, what about the pet who drops in ranking when the kids come.) My preschooler, who has been so emotional lately, was energetic and carefree as she hiked along. Little sister Julia bounced around in the pack.  After we turned around, I let Julia out and she ran along with Ava.

We didn't have any of the battles that we have at home, even in our yard, about who gets to swing first or who is faster or better. As much as I've enjoyed summer and our lack of a schedule, I'm looking forward to September -- to starting anew while also getting into a routine.

Monday, August 25, 2008

Fit Family Book Is Out

I just got a box of books from the publisher and have started distributing them to friends and family and placing them around my town of Waterbury, Vermont. These aren't free copies, they are just the early copies as the rest get handled by the distributor and make their way to book stores. 

I think this book is going to become the #1 baby shower gift. I'm getting all sorts of purchases from people who want to buy for a friend who is expecting a baby or a relative who has young kids. Since the book covers so many sports, it is a good gift for tons of parents and it beats sending another outfit.

Book stores should be stocking Fit Family in the next couple of weeks so pick up a copy and check it out, then get out and get fit with your family.

Friday, August 15, 2008

Vacation Food

Two days ago we were driving from the rocky Maine coast back across that big state along a secondary road. The kids were getting hungry, Tom and I were hungry, and we'd gone through the bananas, nuts, water, and other miscellaneous snack items that we'd been toting around. 

We passed a few pizza joints that looked like they could go out of business any day (not a lot of cars in the parking lot) and then hit a strip that had some big box stores and a Taco Bell. We made it inside Taco Bell, the girls already choosing a table with high stools, but we soon left feeling that the food choices were unappealing, processed, and greasy -- plus, Kentucky Fried Chicken also operated out of the place so the fried food smell was wafting around.

We took our chances and kept driving. The map showed no bold-lettered towns between our current location and Rangeley, our next stop over. But about 15 minutes later we hit a cute little town alongside a lake. We spotted a general store with a deli and Tom went in to get sandwiches while the girls and I sat at a picnic table out back and watched boats take off from the docks behind the store. Our wraps and sandwiches weren't fancy, but they were fresh. 

It was great to eat outside, to take in the beauty of the lake, and to see the girls' fascination with all of the people that came in and out of this lake in kayaks and motor boats. We forged on with full bellies that weren't bloated from fast food. Thankfully, we're now home to a garden full of vegetables, which our daughters proudly picked.



Wednesday, August 6, 2008

My Aching Back

I confess that I've done it again -- seized up my back. You would think that I would have learned from the last time, back in February where two great days of extra long cross-country skis (and no stretching) tightened my hamstrings and sent the stress straight to my lower back. Through the spring I was a diligent stretcher. I listened to professional advice. I stretched throughout the day. I did yoga moves with the kids. Then summer hit. I've been enjoying doing lots of sports, but forgot about stretching.

It was a 10-miler road run that did me in. One long, fast stride on a downhill that sent sharp pains to my back. I had to hold back and tell my running partner to fly down the hill. I couldn't bend down and touch my toes after the run. I'm on my fourth rest day and I've been crabby with the kids. Trying to buckle a wiggly toddler into a car seat is about all I can handle.

I have been using the car more than usual to tote the kids around town as I can't use the bike trailer or running jogger and as I've discovered that heated seats in the summer time can be bliss for a bad back.

I already miss exercising, alone and with my kids. I'm also mad at myself for not doing something so simple as stretching every day. Yup, I'm learning the heard way that my body is not as young as it used to be. I think I'll be signing up for a yoga class this fall.