I started this blog almost exactly 4 years ago. I had signed up for my very first triathlon, and wanted to document the journey of training with three kids and a busy full time job. Now, looking back on my very first post, I’m amazed at how far I’ve come in that multisport journey. I’ve kept running and also done many duathlons and triathlons – including five “70.3s” (half Ironmans). And now I’m training for my first full Ironman that will be this summer at Ironman Lake Placid. I get asked all the time “how do you find the time?” “How do you fit it in?” “What does a day in your life look like?”
So a few of us who are moms who run/train for triathlons and blog got to chatting – how about a coordinated linkup to share our Day in the Life of a Multisport Mom? I have three kids – ages 11, 7, and 5 – and I work (more than) full time in the performing arts, and have a couple of side jobs/responsibilities in addition to this blog and an active Instagram.
Of course I have no pictures of me and my three kids since they are never all three standing still at the same time…
So what does my Day in the Life of a Multisport Mom look like?
It starts early. And as the Ironman training ramps up, it’s only going to start earlier. Right now, a typical wakeup is 5 or 5:30am. Let’s say it’s a cycling day, here’s a typical one from last week:
5:00-5:30am – Wake up. Try to press snooze. Combat the desire to press snooze. Realize if I don’t get the workout in now, it won’t get done. Get up.
5:30am – Check email/social media. Check work phone. Try not to get sucked into either. Make coffee so it’s ready when I’m off the bike. Make workout fuel if I didn’t the night before.
Often I’ll pre-make the boys’ breakfast and pause a television show for them so that when they come downstairs, they can just grab their food and drink off the counter and eat while I finish up my workout.
My daughter does all her morning routine herself, with minimal reminders. Yay, her! She’ll 11 and very responsible. The boys, on the other hand, are 7 and 5 and need a lot of interaction. Sometimes I have to hop off the bike to get them stuff.
6:00am – Get on the bike! If it’s a workout longer than an hour, I need to back this whole routine up so I don’t finish much past 7am.
I have my bike set up on the Wahoo KICKR bike trainer, which is on the main level of the house.This enables me to hear the kids come downstairs, and to chat with them — wait, who am I kidding? Remind them to pack their lunch or go get dressed for school!
7:00am – Finish up on the bike. Go check in with the kids. Sign permission slips, check computer stuff, drink some coffee.
While I interact with the kids, I’ll unload the dishwasher, take out trash, change the laundry, order groceries online, take out recycling – whatever needs to be done around the house. Multitasking.
And hopefully I have time to eat some breakfast. If not, I eat something on my commute.
Basically, I consider the 6:00 hour my workout time, the 7:00 hour the family/household time. Then…
7:30 or 8:00am – Go get in the shower and get ready for work. I typically have my childcare start right here. I have an au pair so I’m fortunate that when she’s on duty, I can go get myself ready if I haven’t already while the kids are eating.
By 8:30am – Time to commute! Sometimes I leave earlier – on early meeting days I have to be out the door by 7am because of traffic. I have a long, crappy drive into Washington, DC every day. It can be 35 minutes or it can be 1 hour + 35 minutes. You never know… I jam out to Pandora, podcasts, NPR, or chat on the phone via Bluetooth.
—THE WORK DAY—
I work in the arts – our hours are long and involve evenings and weekends. We alway say we don’t work in the arts for the money or the hours! But I love it and am passionate about music. Go see a live concert near you!
My days involve meetings, spreadsheets, budgets, schedules, emails, and planning. Lots of in-person people time. Producing concerts is a big operation and we have a team of people who each have their own area of focus. Everyone is passionate and hard working. Sometimes I’m backstage for rehearsals or matinee concerts, and sometimes up in my office working at the computer.
Part of my job is to plan and manage tours – we’re about to embark on an international tour so it’s been a very complicated project.
After the work day, it’s time for another commute!
6:45-7:00pm – Arrive home. Sometimes later. Lately, it’s been later. I am crushed at work with everything going on getting ready to leave the country. But I need to get home to see the kids before they go to bed, so I have a hard stop at 6:30pm to leave the office if I haven’t already.
On nights I don’t have the kids (I’m a single mom 50% of the time and their dad has them the other 50%), I stat at work late, work concerts and events, have other things going on like running club programs, or do my workout after work.
7:00-8:00pm+ – Quality time with the kids. I usually arrive after they’ve had dinner, so I eat and chat with them about their day, or snuggle up on the couch if they’re watching a TV show. Play a game or review some school stuff.
I love the time change, because in the nicer weather, we’ll go for an evening walk with the dog.
8:15pm – Bedtime for the boys! It’s brush teeth, pajamas, and story time.
Lately the “story” is reading about Pokemon from the encyclopedia of Pokemons, and I can probably list you all their “possible moves” by now. My 5 year old is kind of obsessed.
The 5yo likes to snuggle with me at bedtime while he falls asleep, so I do a game on my phone while he gets to sleep, so that I don’t also fall asleep in his bed! If I do, it’s the kiss of death for any blogging, writing, dishes, or anything else I needed to do that evening.
My daughter does her own thing – she doesn’t need to be “put to bed”. She’s a responsible tween at age 11. After the boys are in bed, I’ll go in her room and hang out with her a little while and chat.
9:00pm – My time! This is my evening wine, television, writing, social media, chatting with friends via text or FB messenger, doing my “side projects” – you name it. I need this time to unwind after a busy day.
Or… this is my second workout time. If I didn’t get in the morning workout, I do it now. Or if I have two workouts in the day, I have to do the second one at about 9pm. This is getting harder as I have gotten busier! And more exhausted…
11:00pm – This should be my bedtime.
12:00am – This is usually when I go to bed. I am trying to nudge it up earlier. Trying…
So there ya have it – a day in the life of a multisport mom! It varies depending on the day and what’s going on! But yeah, I don’t get enough sleep, and yeah, I’m busy from morning until night. This is triathlon training as a busy working mom of three!
Be sure to check out Katie and Sandra’s blogs below. Katie, Mom’s Little Running Buddy, has been a source of inspiration and motivation for me as long as I’ve known her. Like me, she’s a working mom who travels quite a bit. Like me, she has Big Goals. We met in person at a fitness blogger conference last year, and now we’re both training for IRONMAN 70.3 Chattanooga, which is May 21 this year. We’ll cheer each other on in person at the race and I cannot wait!
Sandra, Organic Runner Mom, has been a true friend for years now. We get each other. Small kids, big goals. She may live in a quiet small town farm atmosphere and me in the suburbs and big city working life, but we have bonded. We’ve supported each other virtually and in person – she even came to visit me for ZOOMA Annapolis and a fun DC weekend last June.
Here’s where you can find their posts and add your own if you’d like: