By: Marissa H Burke
I am absolutely addicted to my workouts. 5 days a week I sneak away from my two kids, pre-occupied with a sitter and for 45 minutes, maybe an hour on a good day, I get to run and lift weights in blissful solitude, with music loud enough to drown out my own thoughts.
I am a runner; it’s the only cardio that really clears my head. As a stay-at-home mother to a 3 year old girl and 3 ½ month old boy, a freelance writer in nutrition and exercise and a wife, sister, daughter and friend; some days a run is the only “me” time I get. I prefer to run straight down Hogsback Lane into the Cleveland Metro Parks to run the valley hills. When forced on the treadmill I love to challenge myself with hills or intervals until someone else looking to break a sweat kicks me off for maxing out my 30 minutes, which happens often!
While in the gym I elbow my way through the muscle men and head straight for the free weights and weight machines. This is a newer passion; the love of free weights and strength training. Strength training has captured my heart because it really changes a woman’s body, adding strength where there wasn’t any. And this new strength, let me tell you; will carry over into every aspect in your life.
I used to never weigh myself; I just wanted to fit in my clothes with no new ripples underneath. Since the pregnancy though, I’ve been a little nosier, weighing myself ever 2 weeks or so. My new son and darling daughter are constant reminders to take it easy, no negative talk about body image. I’m determined to raise a girl with a healthy body image and my son just wants me to cuddle him, what could be sweeter?!
Being a nutritionist and running enthusiast I’ve come up with an eating plan that works for me. I know what to eat and when; a combination of easily digestible carbohydrates and protein an hour and a half before I run or lift. My go-to food pre-run is toast with peanut butter, bananas and honey (like Elvis!) and post-work out is 6-8ounces of chocolate milk and lots of water.
Coming back from my second pregnancy I was chomping at the bit to start my workouts again. My husband had to hide my running shoes so I would wait the required time, 6 weeks. Now that I’m back at the gym I keep thinking of half-marathons in the near future, a full marathon in the fall and wanting to check out the training schedule for an iron-man or mini-triathlons.
My workout addiction is completely healthy and keeps me healthy. I keep pushing myself with speed, weight and repetitions, I can’t help it. I want to see how fast I can go or how strong I can get, because I believe this current fitness level, is just the tip of the iceberg.