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Down In The Dumps

Down In The Dumps

by macdaddy on October 26, 2009 · 8 comments

I’m not a happy camper these days.  Even though I don’t think things have changed, I’m feeling totally overwhelmed.  My house is always a mess, my kids are always crying, my wife is never home, I’m not eating well, and I only ran 10 miles last week.

Those first three things above aren’t really true, they just seem like it to me.  The last two, however, are definitely true.  Poor eating habits have begun to resurface and I only ran 10 miles–that’s it.  Two 5-mile runs on two different days was all the exercise I managed to get last week.  That’s not going to cut it.

I don’t know what’s going on in my head.  Things were supposed to get easier for me this Fall.  After all, I’ve got two mornings per week to get things done with no children “helping” me.  But so far, it hasn’t really happened.  I’m not organizing my time well and everything seems so overwhelming to me that I’m paralyzed into doing nothing.

Most of the problem revolves around the fact that I haven’t had any quality “me” time for a while.  Every spare moment lately has been spent working in the yard, shuttling the kids around, running on the treadmill, or taking care of sick kids.  I haven’t had a poker night, a round of golf, a beer with a bud, or a date with my wife in a really long time and it’s starting to take its toll on me.

I’ve got to find a way to balance my job with my hobbies.  In the past, taking time for myself has always been easy.  But for some reason, these days it seems like there’s not enough time in the day to get everything done so taking time off for myself feels selfish.  Maybe I need to sleep less so that I can get more done?  Maybe I just need to be more efficient during the day?  Maybe both?

{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Di October 26, 2009 at 5:09 am

Welcome to my world – and a lot of other single mom’s world out there.

What you do is:

Pick one thing you LIKE to do and just do it. Then take care of all the rest. Then, do it again – something creative or if you like working out … do it. Then do the rest.

It will work. And, take a few deep breaths and think that it won’t always be this way.

Honest.

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2 Matt October 26, 2009 at 9:04 am

Dang this resonated today… while I work full-time, my wife and I bought a house recently and have a teething toddler, so this is what I feel like 1/2 of my life is like (and the other half is being overtired while at work).

“But for some reason, these days it seems like thereÂ’s not enough time in the day to get everything done so taking time off for myself feels selfish.”

I think every (good) parent feels this way pretty often.

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3 Greenman October 26, 2009 at 9:59 am

I’ll just remind you, Mac, that you’ve been here before — many, many times. You’ve turned it around. It might pay to sit down and think about the techniques you’ve used in the past. They worked.

I’ll also make a specific recommendation. It’s hard to do something about “feeling overwhelmed.” But it’s possible to do something about, say, making a dinner date with your wife. Or making sure that just the kitchen is clean each night before turning in. Or meeting your running partner on Mon, Wed, and Friday mornings for a 3-mile run. A small, manageable problem is a lot easier to tackle than an amorphous feeling — even if you fail at a specific, concrete task, you always know exactly what you need to do going forward.

You eat when you’re anxious and feeling overwhelmed. This is an old pattern for you. Be patient: when this feeling passes — whether or not you “make” it pass — you’ll be back in the right head space to change your eating habits soon.

Put an ad on Craigs List and get a $12/hr house cleaner to work with you, side-by-side, for the next three mornings. Cross that source of anxiety off the list by mid-week. (Oh, and get your H1N1 shot. The swine flu will make mincemeat of your fitness regimen.)

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4 macdaddy October 26, 2009 at 10:16 am

You guys are making me feel better already. I know I’ve been here many times before. In the past, I haven’t been able to see the light at the end of the tunnel. This time, I truly know that this is a temporary feeling.

Some steps I’ve already taken…The house is much cleaner this morning, I’m hitting the gym at 3:00 today and the driving range right after. Tomorrow (if the kids are feeling better and back at school) I’ll run outside and Thursday, I’ll run with T. A phone call to the sitter has been placed and I’m awaiting a response.

Thanks so much

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5 Mamaw October 26, 2009 at 10:22 pm

make a date with your wife. I’ll be there soon and listen to everyone above

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6 Brigid October 28, 2009 at 10:46 am

Whining is not a calories burner – just an energy-sapper. So stop it!

Sorry – just some tough love for you:-)

Cheers!
Brigid

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7 macdaddy October 28, 2009 at 12:29 pm

Thanks Brigid! You’re right, I’m working on it. And feeling much better now that the kids are somewhat healthy and I got a good run in on Monday.

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8 Scott October 29, 2009 at 11:48 am

I just read that from Gretchen, that Exercise makes you happier. Try that. :)

I hear you though. I feel that same way these days. Part of it is my family is really busy these days, and Stress accentuates the negative feelings.

I wonder about not getting enough “me” time too.

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