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Hump Day Giveaway: All the Single Ladies

May 26, 2010
by

A run you probably can't do when you have a babysitter for only an hour. Dang it.

My older sister, Megan, wonders how I do it: jam too much work into too little time; keep my kids bathed and my fridge (relatively) full; run–or these days, at least exercise–on a somewhat regular basis.

Meanwhile, I wonder how she does it. This fall, she’ll be taking on the Denver Half Marathon and the inaugural Tennessee Ragnar Relay; she has two kids, 4 + 7; and she also works part-time as a management consultant. Our lives sound fairly parallel, but then there’s this kink: her husband, Jeff, acquires more frequent flier miles than a United pilot. His office is in Nashville, but his home is in Denver, so he’s gone, easily, two weeks a month.

I couldn’t walk the dogs, let alone train for a half-marathon, if I couldn’t get up most mornings and run while my husband assumes waffle duty.

As we wrote RLAM, SBS and I were acutely aware that we have it easy; our husbands, for the most part, accept our running and pick up the slack accordingly. Divorced mothers, single mothers, and wives whose husbands with on-the-road jobs have a much more complicated situation: not only do they have to find the inspiration to run, but they also have to figure out the logistics to train regularly.

We’ve fielded questions on the tour and on our Facebook page on how to squeeze in runs when another parent isn’t around to, you know, parent. We’ve thrown out the usual recommendations–trade with a friend, so you babysit while she runs, and vice versa; realize that an hour for a babysitter is worth way more than the cost of a post-run Chipotle burrito; have your kid ride his bike alongside you–but we realize you’re a crafty, industrious crowd and probably have much better ideas than we do.

So our question for today’s Hump Day giveaway is this: When you’re a solo mom, how do you organize your life so you can run regularly?

This question obviously applies to all moms, no matter your marital status, because we all fly solo at some point–and, if you’re like me, the more you’re solo with kids, the more you need real alone time. So feel free to answer, even if you’re living the “for better” part of your marriage right now.

The sweet prize for a random winner? A Run Mommy Run Package from Bornfit: a high-performance skirt (pocket for music and shorts underneath) and flattering, wicking shirt, a Bornfit bottle, perfect for post-run hydration, and bag to hold it all. The package retails for a round $100.

Time management advice then, please, for all the single–and all other–ladies out there. Lay it on all of us.


139 Comments leave one →
  1. Charlita permalink
    May 26, 2010 5:15 am

    The treadmill is my savior! When my husband is not around, I can run with the kids playing nearby, or I run when they nap and keep the monitor near me.

  2. May 26, 2010 5:25 am

    Our YMCA is situated along a 14 mile bike path and allows us to leave our children behind (ages 6 weeks to about 12 years) while we use it. A sanity saver.

  3. May 26, 2010 5:27 am

    When my son was a baby I didn’t run, but I was finishing college. We lived in an apartment complex. When I had to be gone for a very early morning class (which could have easily been run time) I had my breezeway neighbor come to my house for her early morning coffee and paper time just in case my son woke up while I was gone. She didn’t have to change out of her bathrobe and I didn’t have to pay her in anything other than coffee!

    πŸ˜€

  4. susan permalink
    May 26, 2010 5:47 am

    I used to put my kids in the grass n the middle of a track and have them predict how many laps I could do. The winner got a prize plus their sweet encouragement helped me persevere.

  5. Mandy permalink
    May 26, 2010 5:53 am

    I have to say that my gym is a lifesaver. Normally, my kids (twin 4yrold girls and 2.5 yr old son) are in preschool and i would get my runs in while they were in school. Well, school is out for the summer so we will be utilizing the gym a lot more. It’s really nice to be able to take them up there – let them play while I work out and then maybe to go the pool afterward. I’m not a huge fan of running inside on the treadmill but I have worked where I only run 1 run of 3 on the treadmill.

  6. May 26, 2010 5:58 am

    Usually I’m lucky enough to be able to sneak my run in before work, while my husband and son are asleep. When his work schedule keeps him in the lab for all hours, or worse, sends him to Belgium, I have to improvise by cutting my runs to 4 miles or less (I rationalize it as “rest”) and run during my lunch break at work or drop the little dude at daycare just as they open and squeeze the run in after I’ve driven to work but before I hit my email. Thank goodness my company recognized the value of adding showers and lockers for employees.

    I have mad respect for single moms, running or not. Mad respect. I don’t know how you do it every day. I don’t think I could.

  7. May 26, 2010 6:05 am

    When my hubby isn’t around and I need to do a run. I either take my son out and push him in his little toy car, which he loves. I have been able to go up to an hour with this thing and it’s like pushing NOTHING!! I also circulate toys from the toy room to our home gym and the kids play down there while I run on the treadmill. Circulating the toys and brining in books/movies from the library help keep things interesting and new. I also write all of my workouts on my calendar and then see how the scheduled miles will fit into my day ahead of time. I keep that appointment just as I would keep any other. Whether it be first thing in the morning, running with the kids, or right before bed.

  8. May 26, 2010 6:08 am

    best case scenario for fitting running in is IF i have a day off work i run while my daughter is at preschool in the mornings. otherwise i would have to run on the dreadmill or put her in the jogging stroller, both of which are less than appealing options but will do in a pinch.

  9. Meredith permalink
    May 26, 2010 6:09 am

    My husband is a nurse who works the overnight shift in the ER Friday, Saturday, and Sunday nights. I’m a college librarian 8-5 M-F. Our kids are 2.5 and 1; they’re up early, and by the time they go to bed I’m all but beat. But I’ve been blessed with a brand new gym at the college, complete with treadmills and showers . . . I eat lunch at my desk while doing computer work, then spend my “lunch break” running – it’s the best perk I’ve ever had at a job : )

  10. becelisa permalink
    May 26, 2010 6:13 am

    as much as i hate it, the treadmill is my savior. easily half my training is done on either the one i have at home or at the gym when i need a “change of scenery”. last summer i went so far as to put my tread in my garage so i wouldn’t get spoiled by the a/c and not accustom my body to running in the heat and humidity of florida summers. i’m also lucky enough to have an ex husband who is willing to help me out. when i’m marathon training, he’s been known to come over to my house at 4 a.m. so i can get in a long run. my biggest hope is that my daughter (now 10) catches the runnning bug. i don’t push it on her but she’s already done two 5ks. hopefully in a few years she’ll be running beside me and i can start using my treadmill as the clothes hanger it was meant to be!

  11. Gen permalink
    May 26, 2010 6:25 am

    We (our family) have a unique situtaion (we think) we are seven we used to be eight but we lost my bestfriends husband December 2008. So on the nights that we get to run my husband (Erin) takes all four kids and does whatever the kids want thats only if there isn’t soccer, karate or some other previous engagement.

  12. May 26, 2010 6:30 am

    My time management tip? School.

    Although I’m a pretty new runner, I will never forget how much time I gained years ago when my kids we’re both finally in elementary school. Not that I would wish that time with little ones away for anything, but it’s amazing now, that I can easily find the time to run in the mornings, thanks to the St. Paul Public School system.

    That, and getting laid off from work last year and now being self-employed. But, that’s not going to work for everyone. : )

  13. Jessica permalink
    May 26, 2010 6:37 am

    Generally my husband too is the savior to stay home with the kids in the AMs. But he does travel for work and when he does, mom gets a little nuts (I too work full time). So I try to squeeze it in whereever I can – the tredmill, the gym at lunch, the gym/or outside before picking up the kids … I usually have to cut a few out of the schedule, but do my best to at least get in a few if he is gone for the whole week so as to not go insane in his absence!

  14. SS runs permalink
    May 26, 2010 6:41 am

    The treadmill – with a live DVD concert of some sort playing. FooFighters & GreenDay can get me running faster than ever. As my kids have aged I have realized that they like to run too and are happy to jump on the treadmill once I’m finished.
    Of course, at their ages, they usually find something to occupy their minds during my run.
    Remember ladies – 11 years old is not too young to start watching younger siblings for a while. πŸ™‚

  15. mhelen37 permalink
    May 26, 2010 6:48 am

    My husband is a pilot, so is gone quite a bit. I’ve learned that I have to take advantage of the time when he is home, no matter what my plan for the week might have been. The old saying “a bird in the hand…”comes to mind. So, even if I may not feel like running on Tuesday, if he is home that day then I’m running (or some sort of workout!) Also, now that it’s getting hotter, I try to get up early while he and the kids are still sleeping and get in some kind of workout: run or bike, or even weights. When my kids were very small, I always did workout tapes at home-hated every minute of it, but did them anyway. The key is versatility and flexibility…Also, as a last resort-my gym has daycare-used that a LOT when they were little.

  16. Lori permalink
    May 26, 2010 6:52 am

    I just started running 13 weeks ago. I am 37 and my kids are 19 and 16. I ran my first 5K last week. I try to get my runs done in the morning….teens sleep late! But I want to encourage my kids to join me so sometimes I’ll wait until after school…I definitely don’t have the balancing issues I had when my kids were younger. I still find that I have a million things to do every morning. I just try to set everything aside and get my run on first. Then everything else seems to fall into place.

  17. May 26, 2010 6:54 am

    my husband leaves the house at 6am and does not arrive home till 8/9pm. the only way i am able to fit runs in is at the gym on the treadmill, where i can put my kids in a sitting room. on the weekends i wake up and get a 7am run in so by the time i am home kids and hubby just getting up.

  18. Natalie permalink
    May 26, 2010 6:58 am

    I’m fortunate enough to have my husband home to cover most of the time. On days that I’m home alone, though, I have a few options: Throw my little one in the jogging stroller and let her have my ipod with Hannah Montanna on repeat. If my oldest is home, she bikes. Not ideal, but it works. Other times, my mom will come over for the day, and I’ll sneak in a run while she’s hanging with the girls. I’ve also snuck in runs while my girls were at playdates. Another possibility I’ve seen other moms take advantage of (I think mine are too small yet) is to find a park that has someplace to run right next to it (even just a baseball field you can circle) and then run while the kids are playing at the park. You’ve got your eye on them, they get to play, you get to run = perfect plan.

    I agree with previous posters, too: The daycare at the Y can be a lifesaver. I just wish I could convince my kids to go!

  19. KarenM permalink
    May 26, 2010 7:06 am

    Like a few others, if I’m solo parenting, I use my lunch hour at work for a run. I hate the rush of it all, knowing I only have X amount of time. On the other hand, sometimes I’m in such a rush to finish my run on time that I consider it my speedwork for the week!

  20. Marisa Olsen permalink
    May 26, 2010 7:08 am

    I usually run before after work, I am a teacher and before I get my kids (2 & 4) from day care/preschool. If that doesn’t work my husband, who is in law enforcement, and I trade ff running and the kids since he also has a odd schedule. We manage to both get in three to four runs a week although they aren’t always as long as we’d like.

  21. Isabelle Johnson permalink
    May 26, 2010 7:10 am

    I am a single mom in a small house thus no room for a treadmill, no money for a gym, so I started road running in earnest in March. When I have my son for his five-day visits, I 1) cross train with Pilates or Jillian Michael’s DVDs before he gets up 2) do timed quarter miles up and down the block with only one headphone in my ear so if can hear him if wants to yell out the front door to call me home 3) take him out to practice his bike riding so I run alongside and push him up hills 4) remind my boyfriend to compliment my new butt.

  22. Megan permalink
    May 26, 2010 7:13 am

    Jogging stroller and babysitters are a single mom’s best running tools. Last night kiddo was in the jogging stroller squirting trees with a water gun which kept him entertained for my much needed sanity run. Marathon training=babysitting dollars so it is budgeting time AND money, so right now I am focusing on 1/2 marathons.

  23. Julie Fredericks permalink
    May 26, 2010 7:16 am

    My husband takes 2 week business trips to China. While he is gone, my strategy is run in any pocket of time I can find. During the school year it is easier of course, but I find using the little daycare I have to squeeze a run in doesn’t affect the amount of work I get done (I have a part time job) – in fact, that break usually ups my productivity so compensates for the time used running. So, no matter how busy you feel, if you have an opportunity (ie someone to watch the kids) just get out there!

  24. Kathy permalink
    May 26, 2010 7:22 am

    I usually run at 5AM before getting kids ready for school and me ready for work (while hubby is sleeping). I’m fortunate to be able to work from home as needed so when he’s not around, I will drop kids at school, come home, take a run and then start work. Getting a shower – that’s another story! Right now I’m in a slump after 3 weeks of sick kids including 4 days in the hospital, a business trip, and terrible sleep most nights. I could use a pick-me up!

  25. May 26, 2010 7:39 am

    I love my jogging stroller, but I work a 40 hour week in 4 days, which leaves very little time for things like dinner and household maintenance when I make it home, let alone running with the kids – I save that for the weekend! So when my husband’s gone (he travels about 25% of the time), I log my miles on our trusty treadmill while I watch TV (Biggest Loser is my personal fave). The mill is also wonderful for our finicky CO weather.

  26. May 26, 2010 7:44 am

    With kids in school I make a point to get to the gym 5 days a week, to meet with friends and we push each other. I like to do weights and abs there. If I can’t make it I try to run the neighborhood. Running outside is a whole diffferent beast to me, and I want to get my speed and endurance up to be able to say I can do it without stopping.

  27. Christina McCool permalink
    May 26, 2010 7:45 am

    Since running is my therapy, my husband and I make sure I get to run. When he is off being a Marine, I work it out because of our gym. We have an excellent caregiver in the nursery. I can only run for about an hour and a quarter- then I get a shower, too. We would not trade the gym for anything!

  28. May 26, 2010 7:49 am

    For me the secret is taking advantage of the time that comes along. Being prepared to run at any time seems to be key to a busy schedule. I also utilize family to watch the kids for me when I can’t find kid free time.

    If you have no other options, and can’t seem to get outside without the kids, go with them. Have them hop on their bikes and let them pedal along next to you!

  29. May 26, 2010 7:54 am

    Our gym has an outdoor track and a babysitting service as well as nearby track trails! All for free and included in the membership!

  30. Paige permalink
    May 26, 2010 8:04 am

    Now that my children are old enough to watch themselves for a while…(High Schooler’s are wonderful!) getting mom run time is so much easier for me. However, my running partner has little ones…a job…and a Fire Fighting Husband with a constantly changing schedule. I love being able to help her out. I remember what it felt like to have a girlfriend offer to watch my babies so that I could get outside and stay sane. It feels great to be able to do that for someone else.

  31. Rebecca permalink
    May 26, 2010 8:07 am

    I teach high school, and the year will be over in just 2 days, which means I’ll be home w/my 21mo old and my 3.5year old boys all summer! My husband is assistant principal, head football coach and athletic director, and spends most of the summer working w/his football players for the fall season. He leaves the house about 430a.m. and comes home about 1p.m. worn out, so it’s tough to get a run in without tons of guilt because he’s so tired. So a few days a week, I have one of my favorite, trustworthy high school girls come out for about 2 hours to give me enough time to run and shower in the late morning, when it’s not too hot and after the boys have been playing outside for a while and are ready to chill. πŸ™‚ I pay them well–that way I know they’ll come back to help!

  32. Leah permalink
    May 26, 2010 8:12 am

    Luckily for me, I have friends who are willing to help me out when my husband is working. A great support system is key to success.

  33. Abby permalink
    May 26, 2010 8:19 am

    I’ve found that the existence of opportunities to run are tied to my motivation. If I am committed, I can find a way to make it work. This week I’m using a combination of babysitting, pre-school and school (last week), and a run with both kids in tow (seven-year old riding circles around me and anything else he can find while I push the three-year-old in the baby jogger). Next week it will take a whole new set of creative solutions.

  34. May 26, 2010 8:22 am

    When my husband is on a business trip and I am a ‘single’ mom for the week, the kids and I come up with a game plan for the week on how I am to get my workouts in. They realize that when Mom exercises, she is a happier mom. With five kids at home, I try to do most of my workouts in the wee hours of the morning (5:30-7). My older two will sleep next to the baby in case she wakes up. If she does wake, they keep her occupied until I return.

    We live in the middle of nowhere. There are no gyms within 45 miles. Also our closest family is 10 hours away. So I either run outside or do a P90X workout in our basement.

  35. May 26, 2010 8:25 am

    My husband is extraordinarily good at letting me run. He has to be or I won’t let him go ride his bike. But when he’s gone I either have to push them (aah!) get a sitter for them, or the worst, run on the dreadmill in my garage. Luckily my husband is amazing and I rarely have to do that. Bless him!

  36. Tryna permalink
    May 26, 2010 8:37 am

    I’m a firm believer that it takes a village to raise kids. For that reason, a neighbor and I switch off whenever we can (works great for pet care when you are out of town too) and there is a high school girl on the next block when both hubby and I have scheduled workouts on the same nights.

    I’m an Ironman widow for one more month, so have been trying to do workouts in the morning, but find that the gym is the best salvation. I go to yoga on Sundays with the kids in child watch. Gives me a very relaxing break, and gets them running and playing away from me for an hour.

    I have the most tremendous respect for all you moms out there making it on your own for various reasons. You are amazing!

  37. Elizabeth permalink
    May 26, 2010 8:39 am

    My means of sanity is my double jogger. I have 4 year old twins, a 9 and 12 year old and a husband who is gone for 1/2 of every week. I usually go when the older 2 are in school, but in the summer they ride their bikes while I push the stroller. It’s not ideal and it’s stressful running with 2 young kids on bikes, but it has kept me somewhat sane through the twin adventure. Now I am seeing the benefits of having my kids spread so far apart in age…the older can now watch the younger ones for small amounts of time! The minute my husband is home I am gone…alone!

  38. May 26, 2010 8:42 am

    I have not been too creative in the past. I’ve pushed the kids to and from the park in the stroller many times. We also have a great play area at they gym, so about once a week, I drop off my little one while my older one is at school and get a run in on the treadmill. Um, I’ve also run in place for the Wii Fit program:) Luckily, my husband is around quite a bit. I don’t know how other people do it!

  39. May 26, 2010 8:44 am

    I have 4 kids between the ages of 3 months and 6 1/2 years. There is no way I could run as much as I do without my husband’s help. During the school year, I can run with the double jogger while the two oldest are in school but I don’t know what I’d do during the summer if I my husband wasn’t around and I couldn’t go early before everyone wakes up. Probably get a lot of use of the track, which is fenced in so that the kids could play or go on some shorter runs with the stroller and bikes. I would also utilize play dates as good running time. Marathon training, however, would pretty much be out of the question. I’m sure lucky to not be single or have a husband that travels!

  40. May 26, 2010 9:00 am

    I have been taking my son to the daycare at the gym since he was 6 weeks old. Any days that I want to go to the gym, but are riding solo, I know I can always put him in the daycare, where they all know him VERY well, and get my workout in. Also, my husband leaves for work around midnight, so the mornings I am solo also. If I want to work out before work, I have to do it at home. I have a treadmill that I sometimes run on, and I have my 30 Day Shred video set up in the basement with my mat and weights so I can head down there, when I need to.
    It is difficult, but doable. During the winters my husband is a HUGE hunter and is gone most weekends. If I want to go on a long run, or do a race, I have to get a babysitter. I think there is always a way to fit exercise in, but you have to plan it out.

  41. Renae permalink
    May 26, 2010 9:01 am

    This question really made me think about how lucky I am to have a hubby who is willing to tolerate my running. I used to take my kids with in the jogger stroller when they were small, but thankfully, I have a 13 year old who is willing to also be in charge of her 9 year old sister. I primarily run when the rest of my family is still sleeping. I love 5:30 AM peace & quiet out on the road. All you single ladies – you ROCK!!

  42. May 26, 2010 9:02 am

    The treadmill is a great way to guarantee a run every day – or at least the opportunity for a run. But, for those of you who do not have a treadmill, or dread the ‘mill, here’s my advice. Plan your runs for early in the morning or late in the evening, when the kids are sleeping. If you have young children who can not be left alone in the house, ask an older neighbor (who your children are familiar with) to sit in your house, or even on your porch just to be present in case of an emergency. They can read a book/newspaper, drink a little coffee, etc. Depending on how often you need his/her assistance, you can offer to pay them or, in turn, go grocery shopping for them or help them plant flowers, etc. If you do not have an older neighbor, high school or college kids are also a great help. You may have to switch your runs to the late evening because Lord knows teens and young adults don’t like to get up early! Give them a little cash or a Starbucks card and you’ll be running in no time! One the weekends, find another mom in a similar situation and offer to watch her kids for an hour while she runs, and then swap when she’s finished. Where there’s a will to run, there’s always a way to run!

  43. May 26, 2010 9:09 am

    My husband travels quite often too. I am currently saving for a treadmill. But untill I have the money I run with the jogging stroller every night he is gone. It gives me some time to destress and feel awesome and relaxed when he is gone.

  44. Heather permalink
    May 26, 2010 9:20 am

    I (HEART) my treadmill. Seriously. I can’t imagine life without it. It keeps me sane. When I had one child I ran with a jogging stroller, when I had two kids I left them with Daddy so I could run but now that we have four I run on the treadmill. It gives me strength, it gives me peace.

  45. corrine bell permalink
    May 26, 2010 9:28 am

    During tax season I can somtimes feel like a single parent, and sometimes the treadmill has saved me. However, I hate the treadmill so if I can I put them in the stoller or on their bikes and we do that. One time I had to do an 11 mile tempo run with my daughter in the stroller. Another time I had my son ride his bike three miles to the park, we played at the park and then rode the three miles home. He was tired but he made it and boy did he sleep well that night! Plus it was fun to celebrate with him that he had just ridden his bike 6 miles. I still give props to single mothers they are awesome!

  46. Stephanie Madsen permalink
    May 26, 2010 9:28 am

    It’s not the same as a solo run, but my 6 year old LOVES to play soccer and he especially likes it when I play too (probably because he is much better than I am!). So we run around the yard or field and I make sure I run after all the balls kicked out of bounds. I think of it as interval work and it helps keep my heart pumping on days when I can’t get out on my own.

  47. OtherJulie permalink
    May 26, 2010 9:34 am

    My hubby works varying shifts…nights sometimes, days sometimes…overtime when things happen…so I have learned to try to make my own plan.

    Treadmill works…but tough to do when it’s beautiful outside. I try to save it for short runs. I save long runs for preschool days.

    I have been doing the Beachbody 10 minute workouts video (bought at GoodWill for $3) and those are good for crosstraining. Definitely work the quads!

  48. May 26, 2010 9:45 am

    I think that my number one time management tip is to get over the mommy guilt. I went through a separation and divorce and running kept me sane. The only way I could do it was to go to the gym and put my daughter in the child care center- even if it was 7pm. Once I accepted that my running was integral to my happiness, I realized that making this a priority in our busy working full time day was just as important on some days as spending quality one on one time with my daughter.

  49. Jackie permalink
    May 26, 2010 9:51 am

    The treadmill is going to be my friend this summer. Once the kids are out of school, I am going to have to give up Body Pump and running outside as frequently as I am used to. Might have to throw in a babysitter or a swap with a friend once in a while…

  50. Meghan permalink
    May 26, 2010 9:53 am

    My BOB jogging stroller has saved me time and time again. I always PLAN on getting up early so I can run before my husband leaves for work, but the snooze button usually gets the better of me.

  51. realrellim permalink
    May 26, 2010 9:56 am

    I’ve done a variety of things: bribe my child to ride in the jogger–and I’ve done up to 11 mile runs with her in there, run on the treadmill late at night (i.e., sometime between 9 and midnight) after she’s asleep, and paid my sister to watch her for an hour or two so I can get a training run in. Mostly, the jogger has been my best friend.

  52. Megan Barnes permalink
    May 26, 2010 9:59 am

    I have the MOST amazing dad who is so great to let my little boy come and stay for a bit at night so I can squeeze in a run! Otherwise, I’d be toast!

  53. Jennifer permalink
    May 26, 2010 10:05 am

    I try to get my running or other form of exercise in when my boys are at baseball or football practice. My older son is on the field practicing while my younger son watches, joins in on the calisthetics or plays with the other siblings not on the team while I run/walk around the field or the near by track for the hour. Otherwise, my husband works early in the morning and I work more traditional hours so I get the boys up and ready for school in the morning and after work he picks the boys up from school or camp in the summer and I go for a run/walk when I get off from work before coming home. I am just starting out running, so if I don’t schedule when I can do it, it doesn’t always get done!

  54. May 26, 2010 10:08 am

    I’m single, I have my children most of the time (ages 8 and 5), and I used to work an 8 to 5 job. I had NO time to run. So when my sanity and health declined, I quit.

    I now work three part-time jobs so that I can spend more time with my kids. That may seem contrary to reason, but it works. I am able to fit in at least 2 or 3 runs per week somewhere in my schedule, or I bring out the jogging stroller and “take turns” pushing them up the butte behind our house (We get a ton of commentary when the other walkers see my 8-year-old son in the stroller, and us girls hoofing up the hill). I bring them to my weekly soccer games, and they have snacks and cheer for the team. Last Saturday, I did hill repeats up and down the block in front of the house while they took turns timing me. I also have set up circuit training in my bedroom. I announce, “It’s time for mommy’s workout, don’t bug me!” While I am almost always interrupted with requests for snacks or conflict resolution, I keep on squatting and lifting until the issue is resolved. I hope they learn that I need to take care of myself for a few minutes each week. I know I feel better!

    Today, I will take a trail run during my son’s rock climbing class, but I’ll be back in time for him to show me his new tricks.

    Keep Running!

  55. May 26, 2010 10:17 am

    I found a young woman who really wanted to join the local club I belong to. I take her with me to the gym and she stays in the pool with my two boys while I work out. I pay for a her membership and a little more. Then she’s already at the gym and it’s harder for her to make the excuse that she doesn’t want to work out.

    There have been days that I don’t want to go to the gym but I know I already have my “gym nanny” scheduled and she wants to work out too so it pushes my rear out the door! Double win!

  56. Melanie permalink
    May 26, 2010 10:33 am

    UGH! It is so hard to do!! I make my kids promise me that if they will give me 1 hour, I’ll do what they want for the rest of the day! Usually ends up being a run on the treadmill at the Y or they can stay at the Y in the KidsZone and I can run outside if I take my cell phone with me. Otherwise, I’ve found a wonderful path along the River that is about 1/4 mile from where they have gymnastics classes. So while they are in class, I will squeeze in a quick 3 miles. I figure that is better than just sitting in the car reading a magazine!

  57. Katy permalink
    May 26, 2010 10:42 am

    In a pinch, I run laps around my kitchen and living area. I put on a good tv show and just jog tiny laps. LOL!

  58. May 26, 2010 11:07 am

    I really could use some BornFit maternity clothes to run in!

    My hubby travels for work A LOT! Two weeks in Dublin (Dublin, Ireland, not Dublin, Ohio) and two weeks home. When he’s away I run on my lunch hours at work and do easy to follow exercise videos in the evening that my two daughters aged 4 and 2 can do with me (ie: The Shred and FitMoms N FitKids). Staying active while he’s away requires me to let this house get messy and go to bed when the kids do so that I’m well-rested and energized to fit it all in.

  59. Stacy permalink
    May 26, 2010 11:08 am

    When my son was younger I didn’t really run, but I did do video workouts at home in the morning before work. Now that he is older (11), I head out for a run while he’s still in bed or just getting up. He is ok for a while on his own. Then I have the evening free for family time.

  60. May 26, 2010 11:10 am

    I have 4 kids, but my oldest is finally old enough to watch the others for an hour or so if I need her to. Usually, my run comes at 5am before anyone else is awake, and I’m fortunate enough to not have a travelling husband, so this isn’t something I have to worry about much. I’m going to be honest here and say that in the past, if my husband wasn’t home, I didn’t run – I never could figure out how to logistically make it work.

  61. May 26, 2010 11:33 am

    Oh Lordy you are preaching to the choir!

    My hubby has been gone 10 days straight and counting…hasn’t been home more than 3 days/week (when I say home I mean at the office until at least 7) for months. Tough is an understatement. Anyway here’s what I do:
    1. treadmill
    2. 3 x/week I have a 2 hr window of time where youngest is in preschool. As of Friday those days are ova! Plus it’s hotter than blazes.
    3. Push littlest in the jog stroller while Thing 1 rides her bike. Inevitably I end up pushing the stroller and pulling the bike. Excellent XT.

    IMO we all need to be canonized.

  62. May 26, 2010 11:36 am

    I know when my kiddos were little and could not leave them alone, as I can now, I’d get a neighbor and a friend to swap kids for an hour to run. I’d go run an hour while she watched mine and when I got back, she’d go run and I’d watch hers for an hour. I had a double stroller (double everything for twins, as you know πŸ™‚ ) that was okay once or twice a week, but it never let me get my form nor pace right so just tried to use that on easy, recovery days (Besides, R hated that thing and I’d be 3 miles out and he’d start whaling a the top of his lungs…3 miles home was always long!). I also had no problems taking them to a drop-in daycare for a couple hours if I needed a long run in; they loved the interaction and it’d only take me about 3 miles before the guilt of leaving them left me.

  63. Molly Boland permalink
    May 26, 2010 11:50 am

    that will be me starting in June. My husband will be traveling M-Th most weeks. I am already planning on having help at least two of those days so I can get a workout in. I have family close by that I am going to hit up. Other options are the jogging stroller, bike attachment, and paying a babysitter. When he is home I work out at 5AM or 9PM. Not ideal but I get it in.

    Is it terrible then we I found out my husband will be traveling a lot more that my first thought was – how will I get my workouts in? (not oh my gosh I am going to miss you! which I will)

  64. May 26, 2010 12:02 pm

    Create and seize opportunities to allow you to fit your running in. My favorite is the double day. After putting my daughter on the school bus, the littlest goes in the jogger and we get in as many miles as time will allow before I have to get ready for work. After work I arrange for my daughter either to go to a friend or family’s (they live within a mile but are often busy) house or “self-sit” if I am not going far or running the loop near the house.
    I jump on the treadmill when the kids are playing nicely to squeeze in miles or in bad weather or in the middle of the night when the baby had me up anyway and I can’t fall back to sleep.
    I arrange playdates for my daughter to get in long runs even if I have to push the jogger. (I of course offer to have their kids to our house in return!).
    And of course when Hubbs is home, I never miss the opportunity to get a solo run in. Good weather, bad weather (is it really ever too bad to run, I think not) morning, noon or night. You have to be flexible and willing to see the opportunities to do something even if it’s not exactly the way you wanted to do it.

  65. Alison permalink
    May 26, 2010 12:17 pm

    Nothing original. If I’m on my own, I take the baby with me. Otherwise, its early morning runs before my husband wakes up.

  66. May 26, 2010 12:40 pm

    Every minute counts! Have a purpose for your day and make a schedule if you have to. Make sure to schedule in rest and relaxation too but look for time that you might otherwise let slip away. Go with the flow and don’t forget to prioritize. Sometimes that run is more important than the dishes!!
    There is always an extra 20 minutes to get a little running in and then doubles make those miles stack up!

  67. May 26, 2010 12:50 pm

    OMG,it is so difficult. I usually run in the morning before my husband goes to work, but when he is away on business, I obviously can’t do that. I usually line up babysitters who I can take my kids to and then I run a route near the sitter’s house so I can get it in. If it’s a long run, I hit up my in-laws for a sleepover so I can get out early to get 15-18 miles in. I’ve also been known to run at lunch time near my office but that’s a hassle too because I have to deal with the sweat factor!

  68. May 26, 2010 12:54 pm

    I always run either in the morning before the hubby and kiddo are awake, or after my daghters 7:30 bedtime. When I was training for my marathon and got to the long runs, my sweet hubby would take over as “housewife” for the day. Which was wonderful considering the length of the runs and how tired I was after. We have baby on the way, and I’m hoping to get a treadmill so I can run while he sleeps.

  69. Kaylyn permalink
    May 26, 2010 1:18 pm

    My Time Management Tip:
    *Organization & Flexibility*

    Although I am not a single mother, I am a “single” mom about 85% of the time. My husband is a soldier in the Army and as many other military families know (all to well), this can keep Daddy away from our family much of the time. There are deployment’s, field projects, schools, and much more that can and do occupy my husbands time, aside from a regular work day. Rarely ever does he have a “regular” work day, so this is where I find comfort in my time management tip of organization and flexibility. I am very fortunate to be able to stay at home with my 9 month old son and keep this house and our lives running smoothly. Organization allows me to do this. Having a good idea of what my husbands schedule is and knowing what needs to be done for my family, helps keep me organized so I can then plan to complete whatever may need to be done. I feel flexibility is also important because we all know, not everything goes as planned. In my life it’s often, Parker didn’t sleep well =ing a cranky baby, Dear Husband is off on some 2 week field project … Whatever the mishap may be, flexibility saves us. Don’t get me wrong, I hate when things don’t go “as planned,” but it sure helps cut back on the stress!

    I love to do my run’s first thing in the morning. So as soon as my son wakes up, I load him up and we head to the park. Unless one of those previously talked about mishaps happen to occur, particularly one that involves my husband being gone for whatever reason the Army tells us! I do my best not to have my son with me on my long runs–at all costs! Even if it means waking up before my husband must leave for work, which can be very early sometimes but it’s all worth it, to get in that *me* time and not have the extra work of a jogging stroller on top of all those miles a long run has to offer! But like many other moms have said, I couldn’t do it without my BOB jogging stroller and a treadmill. Thankfully my son loves to go on runs with me in his stroller and for those really Hot Georgia morning’s, my run gets moved to nap time or after bedtime 😦 on the treadmill.

    πŸ™‚

  70. Terzah permalink
    May 26, 2010 1:30 pm

    My husband has occasional work trips, and we live 500 miles from the nearest grandparent, so my philosophy since my now-3-YO twins were born is…..
    Have no guilt about using low-cost childcare at your local Y or rec center! I have been doing this since my kids were 18 months old. You get 90 minutes for $10 (for two kids!) at my rec center, and you can pay an additional $4 (that covers both kids) for another 1/2 hour, which I *always* take. I do have to stay in the building, but I have my choice of treadmill, pool, rowing machines and ellipticals for cardio, plus a host of weight equipment and a selection of classes for strength and flexibility training. I want to stress the no-guilt part of this. I live in a town where some people think leaving your kids for two hours is hazardous to their health. It is MORE hazardous to everyone for you not to get your mommy’s-sweating time when you are doing everything else on your own. (And frankly, I sometimes spend part of the 2 hours reading in the lounge area with my feet up. Again, no guilt allowed!!!)

  71. Den permalink
    May 26, 2010 1:40 pm

    I am solo with at least one child everyday from 7 am to sometimes 12 midnight so if I don’t get an early run in – I have to have alternatives. Usually I get to the gym where we have an excellent kids’club. If the weather is cooperating – I’ll dig out the jogger. And if I get really desperate – I’ll get a sitter;).

  72. Jay permalink
    May 26, 2010 1:44 pm

    Thank you for addressing this topic. My husband travels every other week, and I work part time during school months. During school, my kids are in 1st, 2nd grade, I manage to fit training in. Treadmill in basement, and hour at the gym before or after work. But I’m really beginning to stress out with school ending this week! I have a triathlon in 4 weeks. I don’t have a sitter to call on, and they’re too old for the day care at the gym, but the gym doesn’t have regular times for “tweens”. So, I plan out my day around the two hour block I need. I spent a lot of money and hopefully they will get into the afternoon science camp so I can have the time to fit in my training. It’s all about planning. I love exercising before the kids get up, but when you’re husband’s traveling, an early morning ride or swim isn’t possible. I am considering driving an hour to see my mom, just so I can fit in a brick workout while she watches the kids. And that’s a day that’s 3 weeks away. So, basically for me it’s about scheduling my exercise as though it’s the most important part of the family’s week. But it is, isn’t it? If momma doesn’t get her cardio in, then nobody’s happy!

  73. May 26, 2010 2:07 pm

    I go out an run and make my girls 8 & 9 come along on their bikes. There is usually some protest from all parties, but once we’re out everyone is happier.

  74. May 26, 2010 2:41 pm

    I have a traveling hubby too, and it can get trying, for certain. I have my basement workout dungeon for when he is away and I can’t get out. A treadmill, a bike/trainer, weights, etc. gets me through those days.

  75. Rho permalink
    May 26, 2010 3:09 pm

    I run at 6:00 in the morning with a fun group of women. I love my time running in the mornings but when my husband is out of town I just don’t feel right leaving my daughter home alone. She’s 12 but it’s still dark.

    I run later in the day when she has her activities. I take her to dance and run from her studio. I can get in 5 or 6 miles on her long night and on her short night I do speed work. A couple years ago she played soccer and I would run around the field at practice. Now I keep my phone with me and my best friend is on alert just in case she needs something! Afterwards my daughter and I are both sweaty and tired from a good workout and we both feel great!

    The other day I came back from my run and in the dance parking lot was a busy Dad fitting it all in! He sent his daughter in for dance lessons and then he set up his bike trainer next to the open door of his minivan. He had a toddler inside watching a movie while they chatted and he pedaled away. That is a multi tasking Dad and a good reminder that some Dads squeeze it all in too!! πŸ™‚

  76. May 26, 2010 3:18 pm

    My hubby works out of town for weeks at a time, so I am solo A LOT!

    I have four kids that are in school, so most days I get in my runs when they are at school, but this summer I will have to be creative. In the past, I have taken them to the park and just ran around the park perimeter several times. Or stick them on their bikes and let them follow along with me!

  77. May 26, 2010 3:29 pm

    I’m lucky enough to have a treadmill at home that comes in handy when the day has passed me by. When I can’t stand having the kids screaming through the house, I retreat to the mills a the gym. By far, though, my favorite is outdoor running…so if I’m flying solo I’m out of luck. Desperation would probably have me either call a friend to swap kids or pony up for a babysitter. Forget the errands and solo grocery store stops…I need run time!

  78. May 26, 2010 4:03 pm

    I am very lucky that my husband does not travel or anything. He is around 90% of the time, unless he is on a boys trip and those are few and far between. In general I always use my lunch hour to get a workout in and do long run on the weekends. If my hubby is gone I have a friend that we swap babysitting ALL the time. We don’t even keep track, if she needs a babysitter she calls me and vice versa.

    But I could not image finding as much time to run if I was a single mom.

  79. Carrie permalink
    May 26, 2010 4:28 pm

    I’m training for my first marathon (SF Nike in October) and this is exactly my issue right now! Weekends are not a problem, dad can take over while I go on a long run. But during the week is much more difficult, our work schedules make it tough to fit in time for running. I already get up at 5am to work (I work from home part time) before my boys wake up, so getting up earlier is just not an option πŸ™‚ And by the time he gets home at night, I’m making dinner and totally pooped. But I have been making a huge effort to get to the gym for a treadmill run at least once during the week. And then just sucking it up and running in the evening. They will both be in preschool though in September, so you’d better believe I’ll be running while they’re at school! πŸ™‚

    It’s tough to schedule, but I am such a happier person on days that I run!

  80. Lisa S. permalink
    May 26, 2010 4:44 pm

    I am very lucky to be able to run in the morning before hubby and son wake up. But if I couldnt do that then “Bob” my running stroller comes in quite handy and so does the local high school track. My son can run/walk laps or play in the infield.

  81. Dion permalink
    May 26, 2010 4:50 pm

    I’m an Army spouse and separation is a way of life! I’m thankful for non-running friends who help pick up the slack when hubby is away on training!

  82. Jennifer O permalink
    May 26, 2010 5:04 pm

    I don’t know what I would do without my treadmill and a loud alarm clock! Getting up before anyone else is the only way I can get anything done.

  83. Tuba permalink
    May 26, 2010 5:31 pm

    My husband travels for work (and I do, too, but never at the same time). When he’s gone, my mantra is “squeeze in a run when you can”. For example, this Monday I dropped off a kid at a birthday party, left my car parked there and ran a quick 3miler, then picked up my other son from school and took him to his baseball practice, had just enough time for a quick shower at home (while my youngest son had a snack in the kitchen), then picked everyone back up. Squeezed it in! Another example? Got out of a meeting at work, 25 minutes until the next one. So I went on a quick 20min run, cleaned up with a washcloth in the bathroom at work (not ideal, but better than nothing), and showed up at my meeting still red-faced. But guess what? I squeezed it in! πŸ™‚

  84. May 26, 2010 5:45 pm

    I know I’m the late poster here, but just got back from Global Wildlife in Folsom, Louisiana – had a 3rd grade field trip & I was a chaperone – complete with covered wagons, wonderful herbivorous animals roaming wild…How do I fit it in, it being running…I cram it in wherever I can! Training for marathons, I did all my long runs either M,T,W,Th or Friday…I remember doing my 20, going straight to my pool (which doubled as a cold plunge;), taking a shower, dressing, driving to Subway, driving to the girls’ school, 25 miles away to be soccer team-mom – which entails getting a load of little girls ready for soccer practice and getting them out to the field for practice…no one knew I had spent the hours from 9-12 running, nonstop, for 20 miles! I just did it. Running is so important to me, I will get my miles in anyway I have to. Because I have to. Riding back this afternoon, I assessed the beautiful ache in my quads & wondered what we’d be up to tomorrow, Thursday, after I get the girls on the bus and before I meet my sweet son for sushi at lunch…I’m feeling some speedwork needing to get done…I’m not training for anything in particular, but as a runner, I know I have to keep the obligatory workouts obliged! No surprises to these legs, baby! Soooo….I just do it.

  85. Monique permalink
    May 26, 2010 6:24 pm

    I’ve been a single mom who works full time for years – I’ve tried many different ways to keep running over the years.

    When my daughter was younger, I used a jogging stroller all the time – even in the Seattle rain with a rain cover. In preschool and elementary school, I went to a local YMCA with a gym and GREAT childcare. When she got too old for that childcare, I moved to other gyms where I could use the treadmill but I hated leaving my kiddo at a gym childcare room where they just watch tv! It really bothers me to think she is learning to be inactive, while I focus on being healthy.
    So, I asked my parents to watch my daughter once a week which helped, but limited my ability to run often. As she has gotten older, I wake up very early and sneak out for a morning run while she is still asleep or drop her off early at school and I squeeze a run in before work. The older they get, the easier it is!

  86. May 26, 2010 7:08 pm

    I have 3 small boys and a hubby that travels about 3 weeks out of EVERY month. How do I fit in time for a run or exercise? I pay a small fortune to a babysitter because after trying to do it all alone i finally realized you cannot put a price on sanity! I need that time to de-stress and get it all out…..so I can come back and be a better/happier mommy! πŸ™‚

  87. May 26, 2010 7:10 pm

    My husband is in the Navy and I live far away from family. My husband was just on a 6 month deployment and I had to do all my running with my double stroller. My longest run with the double stroller is 18 miles.

  88. Joanna permalink
    May 26, 2010 7:10 pm

    I have a six month old son and 2 year old twin boys. I either run early in the morning on the treadmill before everyone wakes up, during naptime, or at 9:00 at night after everyone is asleep. My husband is out 3-4 nights a week, so that is how I get my runs in during the week. On the weekend Saturday is my long run day and hubbie watches the boys or they come along in the jogging stroller!

  89. Teresa permalink
    May 26, 2010 7:15 pm

    I bought a treadmill 8 years ago and run at 5 am before work. My husband works long days and travels erratically. The treadmill was my only splurge from severance package I had 8 yr ago and it has been worth it. I have tried running at lunch (too sweaty), during kids’ various activities (a lot of coordination required), after kids are in bed (wakes me), and what has worked consistently the best and fits into my life is the early morning workout.

  90. Anna Thorburn permalink
    May 26, 2010 7:17 pm

    I have & homeschool five children and my husband is gone a great deal b/c of our business. My running partner has 6 children and also homeschools.

    As the kids get older, it is easier b/c they can watch the little ones, but mostly, I get away w/the use of a super, micro-managed schedule that is a lifesaver. I use Managers Of Their Homes by Teri Maxwell — her system is logical and works, whether or not you are a homeschooling mom. Fitting it all in is something we all have to figure out πŸ™‚

  91. May 26, 2010 7:18 pm

    A: If I don’t write it on the calendar, it doesn’t happen. My runs (or other exercise) are scheduled like a doctor or hair appointment. πŸ™‚

  92. Casey Carroll Pierce permalink
    May 26, 2010 7:19 pm

    My husband works as an internal consultant for an international company. He is gone just about every week so things can get pretty hairy. We have five children ages 19, 14,12, 5, & 2. Our oldest is in college so she isn’t always available to help. During the school year, I get the big kids off to school and head directly to the gym for my workout. I find if I head back home, there is pretty much no chance I will venture back out. If I need to run, our club lets you drop the kids off and go for a run outdoors. This is a lifesaver. :)There is a line in the movie, Legally Blonde, “Exercise gives you endorphins, endorphins make you happy, happy people don’t shoot their husbands, they just don’t!” That pretty much sums it up!

  93. May 26, 2010 7:20 pm

    When I’m on my own I need an exercise pick-me-up big time!
    I’ve used: jogging strollers, bikes/trailers/tagalongs, scooters, gym time, park time and soccer practice to fit in any type of movement.

    Best choices for lack of space/time: jumprope, gives you the cardio benefit of running if you can handle it for 10 minutes or so. My toddler thought I was hillarious jumping rope!
    I also like running & jumping/twisting/etc on top of a BOSU. It was an expensive birthday present, but so much fun!

  94. May 26, 2010 7:22 pm

    This is precisely why I got a gym membership. It’s a small gym so it is only $16/month. But it has a day care. I’ve also paid our daycare lady to watch my son for a half-day while I went on a 14-mile training run.

  95. May 26, 2010 7:22 pm

    When my husband travels, I have three optons: the treadmill while the kids sleep or play Wii in the room next door; running when they are at school (works during the school year); or throwing myself on the mercy of other moms and trading in all my favors to get time to run. Usually the combination will get me through with a somewhat regular running schedule.

  96. Jen permalink
    May 26, 2010 7:26 pm

    My wonderful and generous sister-in-law gave us a double chariot stroller a couple years ago (she will inherit it when we’re done πŸ˜‰ It totally saves me. I do lament what it does for my posture (and work hard to correct that on non-stroller days), but it actually makes it feasible to run (or bike or ski) with a 4 year-old and a 2-year old during the week. As for long runs, I start warning my (very supportive) husband a few days in advance and have learned to be flexible about flipping a Saturday or Sunday long run to be able to go solo. The few long runs I have done pushing 70+ pounds of kids and stroller have been rough!

  97. Jennifer H permalink
    May 26, 2010 7:27 pm

    Go visit the parents or in laws and get up and run while everyone is still sleeping. Mine are only 2 hours away so it works, when I’m willing to get in the car and head out of town. Usually can use the reinforcements the rest of the day too with 3 kids ages 16 mos – 7 yrs.

  98. Brandy permalink
    May 26, 2010 7:28 pm

    the treadmill or while the kids are at school. if I go while they are at pre-k/K…I go to a nearby path that I can get a long run in before having to pick them up again.

  99. Elizabeth Lotz permalink
    May 26, 2010 7:30 pm

    1. Used to get up before the sun to get a workout in. When my husband was traveling, I could sometimes convince my MIL to spend the night!
    2. The local YMCA has free childcare for two hours. I’ve had to use that many times – on the days the girls aren’t in school.
    3. Preschool!

  100. May 26, 2010 7:33 pm

    My husband is an active duty Army soldier and I work full time for the US government. We have a 2yr old son and a lazy 7yr old Lab. As you can imagine, there are many times when I have to swing the single-working-mama gig while hubby’s deployed overseas. I acquired a supreme hatred for treadmills many years ago while stationed overseas in Korea (air was too icky to run outside most days). Now, when my husband’s out of town, I buckle the kiddo in the jogger stroller, strap the lazy dog on a leash around my waist and hit the hills ’round my neighborhood…. all the while asking my son, “what color is THAT truck?” or begging “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star” musical accompaniment. Can’t beat pushing a 30lb toddler up hills while singing with all my heart and pulling a reluctant 90lb puppy!

  101. May 26, 2010 7:33 pm

    One of our local parks has a 1/4 mile track around it. I’ve let the kids play while I ran. I’ve also bribed my youngest with a popsicle to ride in the jogger (that she hates) while I run. I put my older kids on their bikes and try to keep up!

  102. Alice permalink
    May 26, 2010 7:35 pm

    My jogging stroller and having a dog who needs to be walked make me go out for runs even if my husband is working crazy long hours. He works full time and does his own company on the side so sometimes he is just too busy to do the night shift with our daughter but I’ve been running with my jogging stroller since January and my daughter is used to it. She just goes to sleep while I run.

  103. Jen DiFulvio permalink
    May 26, 2010 7:36 pm

    I am a teacher with two girls (7 and 3). My schedule pretty much matches their schedules, so when my husband travels, I take my oldest to the track and we run. She loves it and we motivate each other while my in-laws or mother watch my little one. When no one is around to help, I run up and down my street while the girls ride their bikes. Nothing is as good as my pre-work time at the gym for improving my mood, but I love watching my daughters push themselves and I love how they look to me for encouragement.

  104. May 26, 2010 7:41 pm

    It’s all about the BOB and good friends. I am a SAHM (among other things) and get most of my runs in with no sitter by bringing my son along. In lieu of that, a good friend and I swapped babysitting duties once a week while each other got a run in. It was great for me to get my longer tempos in on those days, plus we got to hang out with our kiddos. She went back to work though. I miss her!

  105. Meghan permalink
    May 26, 2010 7:45 pm

    My husband travels for work. It’s safe to say if it’s not the weekend, he’s out of town. I usually run while one son is In preschool and take the other one with me in the jogger. Or I run with both of them. This summer I’m planning on letting my 5 year old bike next to me while pushing my almost one year old in the jogger. I also ask my parents, who live close by, to watch the boys if I need a solo run. As a stay-at-home mom, I say that my runs are my lunch breaks, even when I have the kids with me.

  106. May 26, 2010 7:58 pm

    I’m a military wife, so singledom is the norm. I used to feel guilty for leaving my son at preschool/daycare a little longer so I could get a run in either before or after work. Now I know I have to take care of me in order to be able to care for him and maintain my own sanity during the long months of deployments. I usually take my son to preschool dressed in my running clothes and that way I am certain to get my run in! I also leave weekend runs for races only so I don’t over-use my awesome friend who watches my son during races. I have to get my long runs in on Monday’s or Fridays which can be a challenge. And if all else fails I can always take him to the childcare at the YMCA and hit up the treadmill and wieghtroom. But more than anything I rely on my friends. I have one in particular who can tell when I am at my wits end and she will come and hang out with my son so I can run! When you are thousands of miles away from any blood-relatives you have to learn to make friends quick. I am so thankful I found the ones I did or I would not be able to run. Period. I can’t afford to pay a sitter for four hours so I can run, so friends are the closest things to grandparents around here.

  107. Twila Montgomery permalink
    May 26, 2010 8:04 pm

    I teach and my husband works an on the road kind of job so two days a week I workout inside but on the other two days (Tuesday,Thursday) my babysitter keeps my son until 5:00 so I can run after school. My parents also help when they have are off work. It is challenging and I have to run dog tired after teaching all day and in the heat but I love getting my run in! If not I am all jittery and distracted when I get home with my little guy.

  108. May 26, 2010 8:05 pm

    The double jogger was my sanity-saver for years. But I have just been thinking about this again because my husband is going on a trip. I have been pondering trading a hot meal with one of my college friends in exchange for them hanging out with the kids. The hard part is when you love to run at 5am. But any run better than no run, so I am reading all these great ideas! Thank you!

  109. May 26, 2010 8:07 pm

    i get up super early and run, trying to get done before our girls wake up. its crazy, but i do what i got to do. my husband is gone most of the day, so its really the only time i can do it!

  110. Kristin permalink
    May 26, 2010 8:07 pm

    Only by being a member of a gym with a great child care program…worth every penny. Not very creative though . πŸ™‚

  111. Amanda permalink
    May 26, 2010 8:11 pm

    I feel its a little easier to be solo at times. (One less person to account for πŸ™‚ -I do love my husband πŸ˜‰ the jogging stroller, my mother, and a wonderful, flexible daughter who gets a kick out of going to the “club” is how I make is as a solo mom who will not give up part of myself bc I can do it all! With or without my partner in crime.

  112. May 26, 2010 8:18 pm

    I make myself leave the office at lunch or in between work and the daycare pickup. If I wait until I get home, it doesn’t happen as much as I would like. When it does happen, BOB and my best friend are my saviors.

  113. Laura permalink
    May 26, 2010 8:25 pm

    Treadmill at the gym, when they were smaller I could be found pushing them in the jogger, desparate measures include sprints on our block while kids are running / walking w me, in lieu of a run when it just isn’t going to happen I pull out the bike trainer or do a video.. P90X is my current weapon of choice. Though I haven’t tried there is also intervals at the track while the kids play in the middle, or snooze in a stroller in the middle, or just kick it on a blanket in the middle – depending on age.

  114. May 26, 2010 8:28 pm

    My husband works very odd hours and I find myself solo on most days when it comes to the logistics with our 3 kids. I only started running about 6 weeks ago and have done a 5k and now training for a 10k. The treadmill has definitely been what I fall back on when I can’t actually get out of the house for a run so I pop my headphones on, make sure everyone is full, happy & has something to keep them occupied and I get my run in. I wish the local park had a babysitter on hand so I can get my outdoor runs in:-)

  115. May 26, 2010 8:31 pm

    I agree with a previous poster…It’s so much easier as they get older. I’ve been a single mom for 8 years. Now that my daughter’s a teenager, I don’t mind leaving the both of them in bed in the mornings while I run a half mile loop around our house. We both have cell phones and she knows that if she wakes up and I’m not there, she can call me.

    If I don’t get the early morning run in, we go to an outdoor trail system that covers a mile loop. I can see them from every point while we are out there. Of course, as it gets hotter, it’s imperative to get the runs in early.

  116. Crystal permalink
    May 26, 2010 8:32 pm

    When my kids were little I used the double jogger a lot. My kids has their own mp3 players with kids music, it really helped keep them calm and relaxed during the run.

  117. May 26, 2010 9:13 pm

    My hubby is a Firefighter and an avid outdoorsman and hunter. 4 months out of the year he’s fighting fire at any given moment (can’t count on him to be home) and another 6 is deer/elk/(in and out of state)duck/goose/turkey/pig/pheasant…. well you get the idea, lots of food in the freezer to make up for not a lot of time.

    I really don’t like running on the “dreadmill” but in too hot or too windy of conditions outside I will resort to pulling it out for a run. I’m very blessed to be a SAHM/WAHM and I can jet out for a run while the kiddos are at school 26 weeks a year. Other than that its ballancing a baby sitter, using and abusing my parents, setting up playdates or resorting back to the “dreadmill” once they go to bed.

  118. Suzy Hay permalink
    May 26, 2010 9:18 pm

    I have to hit it super early in the morning when everyone is asleep. I get home long before anyone even stirs. But if that can’t happen, and I’m desperate….I’ll take my kiddo along, to the gym where there is a track – she plays her nintendo while I run. One time I had a 2 hour run to get in – did it all on the track with her with me. She colored, ate a sack lunch, played nintendo, etc. =) Whatever it takes!

  119. Katy permalink
    May 26, 2010 9:25 pm

    Sadly, I’m not a morning person or I’d squeeze it in before anyone else was awake (ideal, at least in my imagination!). My husband travels a ton for work and I had to figure something out. For me, that means hitting the treadmill at 7 or 8pm…*not* my ideal time to run, but much, much better than not doing it at all!

  120. Rachel permalink
    May 26, 2010 9:45 pm

    I fall into the “husband works crazy hours” category. I also work full time, commute 1+ hour with two kids (ages 3 and 1) each way to work and I am a runner. I am training for my second half marathon and I fit in my training by doing it on my lunch hour or, if I am home, load up the kids in the double jogger and hit the trail. If I run at lunch, it is either on a treadmill at the gym upstairs from my office, or I have mapped out a bunch of runs around my office. If I am home, I load up the jogger with binkies, bottles, snacks, etc. and head on out.

    It is tough, but it is so worth it.

  121. Erica Griffin permalink
    May 26, 2010 10:00 pm

    I have to say I still don’t know how I fit it all in. The hubs just went back to work after being unemployed for close to a year and I have two boys that are special needs. After I shuttle the first one to his school, I try to go for a run with the other in our double stroller. Depending on the amount of protests and bribes, we race home to get his things together before I take him to his school. I do get another break but not long before I pick up kiddo #2 and then wait the 30 minutes before picking up kiddo #1. It’s either during those small breaks or I have to go running late at night…and frankly, been there and done that. I cherish what little sleep I get too much to go back there. πŸ˜‰

  122. May 26, 2010 10:04 pm

    It takes a village and a whole lot of creativity and flexibility! Jogging stroller, local gym with child care, friends, family, preschool, 30 minutes during a swim lesson, neighbors, odd hours… These all work somedays and don’t work other days. I think the key is being open to whatever gets you out the door on any given day!

  123. May 26, 2010 10:41 pm

    My husband is also gone about 2 weeks out of every month. Luckily my daughter is now 9 and is able to stay home by herself or come with me on her bikes. My other solution is too keep her signed up for activities – gymnastics, swim lessons, soccer practice, tennis lessons – she has always had at least 2 days of activities as week which allows me at least 45 minutes to squeeze in a run. I just get myself ready when I get her ready, and the minute she is started, I’m off on my own. It would be a lot harder if I had more kids, but it works well for us.

  124. Meg Zajdzinski permalink
    May 26, 2010 10:51 pm

    Now that my kids are older, I put them all on their bikes. They ride along and keep me company during my runs.

  125. May 26, 2010 10:55 pm

    I’m a new runner but we live pretty rurally and my husband has a very erratic travel schedule with work. He can think he’ll be home for the week on Monday at 8 only to be headed out on the road at 10. Since we live rurally and have some land, I simply get up early, grab the monitor and run up and down the stretch of road that gets a good signal. Boring yes but effective. And I’m too cheap to pony up the money for a treadmill when there are miles and miles of roads and trails out there that are totally free to run on !

  126. GottaRun26.2 permalink
    May 26, 2010 11:14 pm

    I run with one on his bicycle and the other on his scooter. Thank goodness they love it just as much as I do!

  127. Stacy Grabb permalink
    May 26, 2010 11:28 pm

    As “the pilot’s wife” I’m a single parent much of the time and I squeeze in runs by having a baby and a toddler that both need naps. So with the help of my double jogger stroller we go on “forced nap runs” that usually work, but don’t always. πŸ™‚ That and Kid’s Club at the gym.

  128. Judith H. permalink
    May 27, 2010 4:15 am

    When my life is a little crazy and I can not get outside I use my treadmill or take my youngest with me for a walk/run.

  129. Kim M. permalink
    May 27, 2010 4:42 am

    It depends on the schedule for that day. I’ll get up and run before the day gets started for everyone or I’ll go after my husband gets home from work. I have to be pretty flexible!

  130. May 27, 2010 5:47 am

    When my husband travels for work, I typically don’t run (sob!), but instead use my elliptical machine after they go to bed at night, or during their naps. It’s not the same, but it’s better than nothing!

  131. Kelly permalink
    May 27, 2010 7:26 am

    When my son was 18 months old, my husband was gone for 7 weeks for work. During that time, my son developed a HUGE case of seperation anxiety, where I couldn’t leave him at the daycare at the YMCA without him crying so hard that he made himself vomit. (That only happened once, and we stopped going after that). We had just moved into our house, and although I had met most of my neighbors, I felt uncomfortable “ditching” my son off on any of them. So I ended up running with my son in the jogging stroller.

  132. Julie Berland permalink
    May 27, 2010 8:35 am

    I’m fairly lucky in that my husband doesn’t travel much but I’m not an early riser so getting up and exercising before the kids wake up just doesn’t happen. How I deal? I pushed my twins in a double jogger until they hit preschool, I brought them to track practice (they play in the long jump sand pit while I run around the track), now that they’re older I make them ride or scoot along while I push the 3 year old in the jogger. With the older boys in school now, I’ve found a cheap day care option at our local rec center for a once a week work out. Summer time is much harder to get consistent runs so I love vacations as grandparents step up and watch the kids while I sneak away for a run.

  133. lulu kaliher permalink
    May 27, 2010 8:48 am

    I run during the day or run to drop off or pick up kids. My job is flexible that I can work my own hours so off I take the kids at 8am – usually home by 9am and in the office by 9:30pm. then at 4:30pm pick up the kids running. Gets my miles in definitely and gives me a hard workout pushing the double Bob stroller. Kids are 4 and 22 months. That’s alot of weight!

  134. ashlee permalink
    May 27, 2010 12:41 pm

    nothing terribly creative here–my baby goes in the jogger and my 4 & 6 yr olds ride their bikes or scooter alongside. when the 4 yr old runs out of gas, scooter goes under the jogger and he gets in, adding to my workout. it tends to slow me down (having them with me), but i’m happy to at least get out and get a run of any kind in. And honestly, i love that my kids “train” with me. I love hearing my 6 yr old say, “Do you think we should go for a run today? ‘Cause it’s a beautiful day, Mom.” They know physical activity is important and i think we’re closer for it. But i do crave the time to run alone and i’m so happy when my husband can be around to make that happen, too.

  135. Amy Fitzgerald permalink
    May 27, 2010 2:45 pm

    I am one of those “single” moms that falls into the category of my husband traveling frequently for work. I have 7 yr old b/g twins and a 4 yr old daughter. I have only been running for about 6 months but already have a 10 miler and a 1/2 marathon under my belt. I’m training for another 1/2 that is coming up waay too soon ~ Zooma Annapolis.
    This week he is traveling Wed-Fri, and today, this is what my FB status reads: “must of wanted it really bad…4 hrs of sleep, my only free hour of the day all to myself, & 90 degree heat…but it was exactly what I needed to restore the harmony in my own little corner of the world!” The 1st FB friend reply reads “it always impresses me the way you make the most of your free time and funtion so well on so little sleep.”
    I think if you crave it, you will find a way to make it work. But on the same note, in order to get that run in, I ignored the dirty dishes & piles of laundry & the bills that needed to be paid. But those things can be done later…like at midnight. My usual bedtime is 1:30am!
    So the trick is to be creative, like today. I got dressed in my running gear, grabbed my headphones & the Garmin watch, on my way out the door to take my 4 yr old to preschool. I dropped her off & then parked the car & discovered a new running route! I only had one hour before the Sears service man window was to begin & I needed to be home.
    Another way that I have managed to run, when my husband is away, is to swap babysitting svcs with neighbors. Their passion may not be the same as mine, but we all value our free time, whatever way we choose to spend it.
    In life, if you create road blocks, obstacles prevent you from reaching your goal. If you can visualize a way to make it work and create a mental path, this is the first step in reaching success!
    Twincerely ~ Amy

  136. May 27, 2010 6:07 pm

    Although I hate to say it if I find myself solo it is the TM or I try to run early in the morning before anyone is awake. Then I come home with a clear mind and a happy mommy ready to start everyone’s day off right.

  137. Ashley permalink
    May 28, 2010 12:31 am

    My husband just got out of the Army, while he was in Afghanistan I needed to walk/jog for sanity. I got a jogging stroller and took off. At first my daughter didn’t like riding in it. I realized we lived very close to quite a few parks so I would stop at one (sometimes 2) on our route. She begs to go on walks now.

  138. May 30, 2010 6:54 am

    Treadmill in the basement for the days when the baby is sick or the kids are off school. BOB jogger for the great days outside. YMCA 5 minutes down the road for all other days when I want an hour run without pushing a baby. All done before 10 am or else it won’t happen.

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