A Recalcitrant Wife and Mother Tells All

Tag: running

She’s number one!

Tomorrow is the big day my 8 year old daughter Mini-Me and I will run our first 5K race together.


I’m proud to say I think we’re both ready… ready as we’ll ever be. I just completed my Couch to 5K running plan. Well kinda. I started in week 5, totally skipped week 8 (Aunt Flo says “hey,” by the way), and ran only one time in week 9. Mediocrity. It’s how I roll.

But I did run 3 whole miles without stopping or dying on Wednesday and it was absolutely cathartic. In fact, I’d like to apologize to the other 6 people on the track with me that day for my maniacal outbursts. Meh, at least I gave them something to talk about at the dinner table later. “Whoa, you guys, you should have seen this crazy lady at the track today! She was laughing and crying and randomly breaking into Journey songs. It was super scary.”

{Don’t stop. Be-lee-eee-vin’!}

I coudn’t help it, y’all. The conditions at the track were perfect for training that day: not too hot, not too cold. It was slightly overcast so I couldn’t see my dorky shadow flailing about like Tigger having a seizure. And I finally figured out how to stop my iPod from shuffling with every step. Man, that was annoying. What a difference to be able to hear a whole song instead of only the first two seconds. (Totally not exaggerating. Der.)

Also, the only other people on the track that day were walkers. I love when that happens! Running amidst walkers makes me feel all Maya Rudolph fast! Oh wait, maybe that’s Wilma Rudolph fast. Nah, who am I kidding? I’m definitely more like Maya Rudolph. Pregnant Maya Rudolph, tops.

More days than not, I show up at the track and there are very fit women in perfectly coordinated running ensembles who effortlessly run laps around me while I’m huffing and puffing and threatening to blow their skinny little houses down. I feel bad about myself when those ladies are there.

But you know who doesn’t feel bad about herself today? Mini-Me.

She came home from practice yesterday with her race-day running packet. She was beyond excited to tell me all about it.

Her: “Mom! I got my number for the race! Guess what it is!”

Me: “Uh, I don’t know. What is it?”


Me: “GET OUT!”

Her: “Really! I’m number ONE!”

Me: “Well of course you are! You rock. But seriously, what’s your number?”

Her: “Mom. I’m serious. I’m number one.”

Me: “You are totally messing with me. Prove it.”

Her: “Mom, seriously. Look!”

Me: “Whaaaaat? How in the world…? Seriously. That is the coolest thing EVER! Finally, your hyper-assertiveness is paying off. What did you do, push the coach’s kid out of the way to grab that number?”

Her: “No Mom, they just gave it to me. And since you’re my running buddy, I’m hoping you’ll be NUMBER TWO!”

Me: “Bwahahahahahaha! NUMBER TWO! That would be so awesome! Oh. Em. Geee. I totally want to be number two. It will be extra hilarious when I poop myself at the halfway point.”

Her: “I know, right?!”

And, end scene.

That kid kills me.

So I went to pick up my race packet yesterday, and sadly, I’m not number two. Booooo-hisss! But the number two IS in my four digit number (three times!), so maybe I’ll just have to find a way to pin it on myself creatively. Hmmm.

Also, total buzz kill, I just found out that ALL Girls on the Run participants get #1 for their bib number. Damn. I sure hope Mini-Me doesn’t notice that when we get there tomorrow. She’s so excited!

Wish us luck, friends. Well, really, just wish me luck. I’mma need it.

already crapping my pants,


© Copyright 2011, The Bearded Iris. All rights reserved.

So now, I run.

“You’re fisting!” she snapped.

“Well, YOU’RE leaving skid marks,” I snapped back. “Pick up your feet!”

No, this is not boudoir dialogue.

This is what it sounds like when my 8 year old daughter Mini-Me and I go running together.

Okay, so we’ve only done it once. But that’s how it sounded, mixed with a lot of heavy breathing and the muffled slap-slap-slap of my ass cheeks on the backs of my thighs.

She’s part of a Girls on the Run program at her school and she’s training for her first 5K. Apparently, one of the tips she’s gleaned from her training is to not tighten your hands into fists while you run.

Guilty as charged. I was fisting. But I had my stop watch in one hand and my car key in the other.

And the fact that she calls it fisting makes me laugh, and I’m really not fit enough to waste so much of my precious oxygen cackling while I run.

What Mini-Me hasn’t yet learned is to pick up her damn feet so she doesn’t sound like a little old man shuff-shuff-shuffling off to Buffalo. Drives me nuts!

Not that I’m a pro or anything. I only ran my first 5K about 18 months ago right around the time I reluctantly turned 40. But I do know enough about running basics and physics in general to know that dragging her feet will slow her down, tire her out, and ruin her shoes.

Of course, she’d rather fist a hemorrhoidal honey badger than listen to her Mama, but whatever.

Her coaches suggested that at least one parent from each family train with the girls as their “running buddy.” They encouraged us to sign up for the 5K run too.

Our race is scheduled for November 12th. That’s less than 4 weeks away. So now I’m in training. I’m doing the Couch to 5K running plan because that’s what I did before and it worked for me.

This time though, I jumped in at training week #5 instead of starting from the beginning. Doing things half-assed and without adequate preparation is pretty much how I roll.

But I ain’t no quitter…  most   some of the   this time.

And I have really good motivation: I definitely don’t want to embarrass my kid next month and be the one rickety mom hyperventilating on the sidelines, needing medical support.

So now, I run.

I am a runner!

(photo source: http://www.facebook.com/HealthyBodyProject)

Aw yeah. Eye of the tiger, baby.

Maybe someday she’ll look back on this time together as she accepts her first Olympic Gold medal and she’ll think “That was pretty cool that my Mom trained for and ran my first race with me.” And then she’ll tell Bob Costas all about fisting and skid marks and the sound of my butt.

Hey, a gal can dream.

Got any great running (or parenting) tips for me? Leave me a comment and tell me what you know.

Born to run,


© Copyright 2011, The Bearded Iris.

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