“Kids, I’m on the Treadmill…The Dog’s in Charge!”


Every Mother and Father, with small children, and a treadmill in the house, will  appreciate my last week of training.

When people first think about buying a treadmill I’m sure they have high hopes! The treadmill, of course, will be a great time saver because no longer will they have to trudge back and forth to the gym. The convenience of exercise equipment, in the privacy of their own home, will be enough motivation for them to hop on and get in a few miles each day. AND the best thing about treadmills, you can multi-task! Who wouldn’t want to be able to run their miles with their children playing quietly in the same room.  This is the ideal picture. I don’t leave the house, I save time, my kids are content and I run!

I wish! This last week of training reminded me of when my kids were little and I couldn’t get out the door and enjoy the beautiful running weather. However, I did have a treadmill, and for this I was very thankful!!

Although with little ones in the house, crawling around, I couldn’t take any chances of them getting near the treadmill. So, before I ran I had to set-up shop. I’d put one in the exersaucer, pour some cheerios around the tray, put some other cheerios in a container, (getting them out of the container would be a challenge for Tommy and hopefully would keep him busy for a few minutes longer.)  I’d put the other one in the swing, wind it up, give her a binky, give her a bottle, and hope she’d be content. I’d then instruct the older one to hand out more cheerios and wind the swing again if the little ones get crabby.  Finally, I would jump on the treadmill and hope for the best. Sometimes this worked, sometimes it didn’t. A lot of recovery days turned into tempo runs, as I was trying to get the mileage in and soothing babies and toddlers at the same time.

This week, I was watching my 3 year old niece. And it just so happened that my 2:10 minute run fell on the same day.

My morning went like this; I got my two boys, who are now 13 and 11 at school by 7:30, and my 7 year old daughter to school by 8:00. I home-school my 9 year old, Leah, and Emma, my niece was to be at our house by 7:40. I just didn’t have the motivation to get up at 4-4:30am and get my long run in before I got everyone off to school.

My only choice for my run was the treadmill.  I bribed Leah, telling her I’d pay her five bucks if she “babysat” Emma in the basement. “Color pictures with her, play barbies, watch a movie, whatever it takes, just keep her busy and content and I’ll be done in no time!”

So, my run started and this time it was great. The girls never got into an argument, they never needed or wanted anything. They just played quietly and contently as a got my 19 miles done.

The only thing that was disturbing was Leah asking me ever so often “Mom, how many more minutes now?” When she asked at 53 minutes to go, I had to regain my mental strength and tell myself I could keep going and it would be over soon enough.

Thankfully, now that my boys are older they understand, that the treadmill can get boring, so they set me up with good company. Yoda and Obi-Wan, who else would I want staring at me while I run. Every once in a while I look Obi-Wan in the eye and ask him what he’s staring at. And I really wish I could take the light-saber from his hand and swing it at him a couple of times. All in fun of course.  And then there’s Yoda who I’m always wanting to give him a high-five. He’s holding his left hand up and out and I know this is just what he wants.

This run is going so well, better than I expected. The girls are wonderful! Leah deserves 10 dollars not 5! She’s a great babysitter! I’m almost tempted to think that maybe gone are the days of winding swings, throwing binky’s at the baby in the exersaucer, yelling at the kids to stop fighting,  (it takes so much more energy to yell, in the midst of intervals on the treadmill.  It really does leave you breathless!), and begging the kids to stop crying  so I can just have 3 and half more minutes to get that last half mile in! It makes me laugh to think of all the energy it takes to get my runs done on the treadmill…and REALLY I wouldn’t change it for the world!

Oh, and if all else fails, leave the dog in charge!

Disclaimer: This is only a joke! So don’t be offended. No children or animals were hurt while I was running on the treadmill or typing this blog.

One thought on ““Kids, I’m on the Treadmill…The Dog’s in Charge!”

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