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What Would you Pay to be Fit?

Put your money where your mouth is! That's my motto when it comes to most things, and it really should apply to fitness as well. But for years I wouldn't sign up for a gym membership because I couldn't rationalize the cost.

Really - I still can't. Great exercise can be FREE. And when it's free, it's even better because it's free. It's natural, it's organic, it's spiritual.  Even though I haven't belonged to a gym in over a decade, I still exercise almost every day. I'm not saying I get up from the couch and walk to the fridge. I mean: I exercise. Sweaty, grunty, loud music-blaring exercise.

And there is nothing that would stop me from continuing my routine. Well - almost nothing. You see, to really exercise: sweat all over your face - just you against the world - rat in a cage - run until you collapse - I can't believe I just did that - sheer bliss type of exercise needs to be done alone.

Or with a buddy, I guess - if you're into that sort of thing. But not with children. Not with interruptions asking for snacks. Not with cats throwing toys on your body and meowing. Not with phone calls and tattling and.....  You get the point.

To really let go, you really have to be free. That's not something every mom gets. I sure didn't get it - not until both of my kids were in school. Then I came back to life. It's sad to say, but I was dead when my kids were young. I took care of them. I cleaned the house. And that was it. Dead, dead, dead.

I came alive when my youngest went of to school. I could hear myself think. I could finish projects. I could really exercise and it rocked! Just 6 hours a week to myself was enough to bring me back.

I established a routine. I hardly ever missed a workout. Life was good and I was looking forward to school starting again this fall.

Then I got the letter. "Your daughter will be in PM kindergarten." What the hell!?!?!?! Our neighborhood was AM kindergarten. That's how my routine is set. It's all babies in the morning, then it's all mom, then it's back to the house and babies. Life is good when mom gets "mom time."

There could be no afternoon kindergarten! With PM kindergarten - the plan would be: feed babies, race to the bus, endless princess/cat/friends/crafts maybe mixed in with some gymnastics/swimming for my daughter, then racing her off to the bus - then finally cleaning the house, going grocery shopping, suppressing my rage, then picking the kids up at the bus - fighting over homework, running to swimming/tae kwon do/whatever, racing home for dinner - going to bed angry.

My body went into lockdown when I read the letter. I called the school immediately. "We're sorry we are not open until August 9th." That was in June. I wrote the date on every calendar I owned. I informed my husband that I needed to change her kindergarten and went over the options. On August 9th - I called again.

She told me I could switch to AM kindergarten if I had a valid reason (damn right I did!) and that there would be no bus service if I chose to switch.

I had anticipated this, and decided to switch anyway. Here's my thought. We live 1.2 miles from school. I know because I clocked it so we could time ourselves walking/biking to school. Let's say it costs me $1 a day to get my daughter from school. About $20 a month.

You know what - that sucks. But damn it: when am I going to finally consider myself valuable enough to spend a little money? Yes it will suck to drive to school and fight for parking, but the alternative is so much worse.

So it was an easy decision for me to make. I could tell my husband was annoyed. But it is worth it to take the time, gas, car wear/tear, and effort to have my schedule work for me. And I'm not going to give it a second thought. I'm not going to try to "make up" the extra gas money by saving somewhere else. Forget it! My health is worth whatever it ends up costing. Finally!

*In case you're wondering, I do not have an obsession with being thin. I am naturally thin, but exercise is my medicine. Without it; I am achy, crabby, and a downright bi**h. It naturally regulates my hormones, moods, and feelings. Trust me - you do not want to make me miss a workout (and get the hell away from me if I have missed a couple!) For most people - just stay away from me...period.


  1. Despite all my rage I am still just a rat in a cage. Someone has said what is lost can never be saved.


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