No one covers single motherdom when it comes to getting back on track

By no means am I calling myself a single mum; I have a loving husband who does everything for me and his almost five month old daughter, and who works extremely hard for us to have everything we need and want.

But working away in a town 1186 kilometres from Perth a few weeks at a time, I’m essentially a single mum until he comes home for a week. This is our choice for our own reasons.

But I’ve discovered something that is quite frustrating and annoying. 

Baby gets her exercise but what about me?

Baby gets her exercise but what about me?

I need to lose weight; since having the baby I’ve put on about seven kilograms – when you play with a newborn, you’re sitting down on the floor dangling a toy in front of their face for ten minutes or however long their attention span lasts for. When they take a nap, you’re napping because the nights are so scattered and you’re up at the crack of dawn so it’s the only time you can catch up on your sleep. You find it difficult to cook meals because if you have a baby like mine, you can’t put them down to entertain themselves for even two minutes as they scream and cry and simply want you in their arms. You live off of snack items; if you happen to be driving somewhere you pop through the drive-through so you can eat in the car with one hand while baby sleeps in the back, or; if someone is kind enough to invite you over for lunch, you can have peace of mind while your friend minds the baby but you’re slamming it down your throat faster than a jet fighter plane because baby starts wriggling and wants to be with you.

Then, dinner is often eaten late after baby goes to sleep but who feels like cooking after 7pm? So frozen dinners it is – as long as the microwave doesn’t make a loud whirring noise, I have a clean sweep to enjoy my food. Unless baby loses her dummy…then of course the interruptions begin.

Sure, I can take the baby for a walk but in Perth’s recent heat wave, it’s difficult even in the mornings to take her out. We’re sweating before I’ve even put her in her seat and she’s squealing it’s so hot, the dog is already panting and dehydrating, and who wants to put on socks and runners only to have to peel them off your feet with a spatula when you get home? The only choice is heading to the shops yet if I were seen to be power walking with the pram there I’m sure security would be on my tail.

Oh, and I miss my running so I feel lazy walking but I can’t run with the pram until the baby is six months old. And don’t get me started on my knees. Since giving birth, the ligaments in my joints feel like they’ve been ripped apart by zombie teeth.

With all this in mind, how in the world am I supposed to lose the weight I so need to get off? I don’t have a husband who comes home every night and who can give me half an hour to go to cross fit or pilates or outdoor training or even just a run.

I walk into bookshops all the time and this week I saw a new publication on sale – The 17 Day Diet by Mike Moreno. As usual I picked it up and it had wonderful meal plans and exercises but as the famous saying goes, “Ain’t nobody got time for that!”.

Nowhere can I find The FIFO Mum’s Guide to Losing Weight and Eating Healthy. I’ve resorted to Lite n Easy because there’s not much preparation involved and moving back into vegetarianism (I craved meat in my pregnancy) is again limited here so I just don’t eat the meat in the lunches and order vego dinners; when my little princess is sleeping I’m tidying up the mess we’ve made or spending time with the dog (poor thing has been neglected of attention…), doing laundry, washing dishes, watering the garden, having a shower, hanging up laundry or sitting on the loo – all stationary things (well, mostly). And they have to be done quietly so it’s not like I can pop on my treadmill when she’s asleep.

This is the challenge I face; sure, I could join a gym with a creche, but remember, I’m not working and we’re now on a single income so how am I supposed to afford a gym membership or any sort of fitness class? Yeah, not an option. I’m not the sort of person to encroach on my friends or family to babysit because when I feel like exercising, it’s spontaneous, and they all have their own children to take care of let alone my little girl who has separation anxiety whenever I leave the room.

I’ve searched online for tips and advice. Nothing.

This blog post was my 45 minutes of time to myself…got to cut it short. Baby is awake. I’m sure I’ll find a solution and when I do, perhaps I’ll write a book.

And respect to single mothers. How you do it on a permanent basis…well, RESPECT.

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Comments

  1. Sounds like you are doing an awesome job! Most people lose weight when they go ‘Vegan’.. Mind you, I’m not the best person to advocate weight loss as I’ve put on weight since converting to the ‘V side’, thanks to all the creative sampling of vegan desserts! 😉

  2. I so hear you. Many of us simply do not have the family/ community support these days. Hopefully the weather cools down soon and you can start walking/ jogging with baby in the pram. That is how I lost the weight, but with this crazy weather, and other factors, it has crept back on – bring on the cooler weather. I am so over the shops (and my toddler is well and truly over the shops, that’s for sure). Your joints should start feeling better soon – mine were sore for about 8 months, but then, everyone is different.

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