Sissy Exercise Update and Her Crazy Life

Hey!  I have missed you guys.  It’s been awhile since my last update….so let’s catch up :)

I thought I would talk a little bit about where I am now with my fitness.  It has now been eleven months since my youngest was born and coming up on the two year anniversary of my back surgery.  First and most important we are all still alive :)  Second I am so happy to say that my workouts are getting more and more similar to my pre-back surgery day workouts.  Over the last couple years I could never imagine being able to really move and run again.  But these last couple of months I have felt so many improvements.  Our bodies really are amazing with what they can go through and how they can heal.

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Treadmill running at home :)  Currently I am running three days a week.  So I switch off my running days with non-impact cardio at the gym (stair climber, elliptical, row machine, and my new favorite Jacob’s Ladder).  This routine seems to make my back pretty happy.

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My muscles are starting to return!  My muscles had atrophied pretty much to a nonexistent state over those two years of pregnancies and surgery so I am pretty excited to see the muscles coming back!  It has definitely been a slow, painful, and hard process of getting back into shape.  The lessons it has taught me though are invaluable. I have learned to be more patient with myself and others.  I have learned that it’s okay if I miss a workout.  Life happens :)  I have learned to be so grateful to be healthy right now and not in pain.  I have learned that not only can I survive hard things but thrive!

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HaHa!  My failed attempt at using the timer on my camera phone to show you that I can jump for joy again :)

Now for life at home and the things that bring me joy……

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These boys are the best of friends!  Seeing them together melts my heart every time.

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Finding random selfies my kids take on my phone

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One on one dates!

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Sharing their food :)

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Coming out of the bathroom after being in there for literally two minutes and finding this….

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This face….makes my heart happy!

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What brings you joy right now?

What lessons have you learned from your injuries?

Any funny stories of messes that your kids have done when you weren’t looking?

Have any questions for me?

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61 comments

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Your youngest in that group photo=hilarious! And his “busted” raisin bran face is priceless, too! My brother once made a mess with my red nail polish…………….painted his toy sailors and shark toy with “blood”.

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HaHa! That is exactly why I keep the nail polish under lock and key :) Have a great day!

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Yay! Glad you are getting better. And wow, lady, look at those guns!

Once my four year old flushed an entire roll of toilet paper. Not even the plunger or drain snake could fix that. I had to call a plumber to pull up the toilet and then caulk it back in place. I was so mad. Even now, seven months later, every time she goes to the bathroom, I shriek, “ONLY FOUR SQUARES!”

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Oh no…..that is awful!!! I’m keeping my fingers crossed that won’t happen over here. I’m going to start the “only four squares” mantra immediately :)

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I love taking selfies on my parents phones…luckily they don’t know how to upload things to social media. LOL.

Is it a requirement that everyone in your family have great hair?

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Ha! My poor daughter had no idea what she was getting herself into when she took that selfie :) Thanks for the hair comment….my daughters hair is pretty amazing! When she was born everyone thought it was a wig because it was so long and thick as a newborn :) Have a great day!

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Thanks for sharing! I’ve learned from my injuries to listen to my body and that it’s OK to take time off. I used to get so frustrated and panicky about missing any runs, but now I understand that’s just life sometimes.

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Love hearing that! Thanks for your comment :)

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I absolutely loved the gratitude and joy you expressed in this post–what a great kickoff to my morning!

I live right by the University of Oregon campus and the gorgeous spring blossoms everywhere are bringing me a lot of joy.

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I agree…the spring blossoms are bringing me a lot of joy too! Have a wonderful day :)

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I’m so glad your back is healing!

If your ever up for it, I’d love to hear how you budget for and manage a household with a bunch of kids. We’re trying to decide how many to have and I love kids, but do worry about the financial aspect of having a bunch. Thank you!!

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I will definitely have to write a post on that. We live on a pretty tight budget over here….so I will share the tips I have learned to make every penny stretch. Thanks for the comment!

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A great thing when you van finally be over the top of the mountain and reflect back on the climb.

My dog brings me joy 24/7. Don’t know what I’d do without him.

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So glad you have your dog! What type of dog is he? My kids have been begging me for a dog and I told them we would look into it after my two youngest are potty trained :)

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He’s a miniature labradoodle. Best dog ever. :)

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These warm, sunny spring days are bringing me joy!

I’m wondering if your sister would be interested in doing a guest post on her daily eats?!

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I would love to do a post on that. Thanks for your input! Have a great day!

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So glad you’re doing better and loving your positive energy! Great to see some more muscle definitin- that always makes me happy!

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Thanks for your sweet comment! Have a great day!

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1.) Your kids are adorable
2.) So glad you’re healing up and getting better!

Lesson I’ve learned from past injuries – Listen to and respect your body!!
When I initially got into marathon training, I tried to continue my normal running routine of running every single day and never taking a break. When the mileage increased, my body started to breakdown and I ended up in a boot multiple times throughout training season. Now, I proactively swim once (or twice) a week instead of run and it’s made SUCH a difference. Better to take a day or two off running a week than end up in a boot for months!

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So glad to hear that taking the time off running has helped! I think my kids are pretty adorable too ;) Thanks for your comment.

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Your family is so beautiful! And I’m so happy you’re able to work out again without pain. I have no idea what it’s like to have a back injury (and I’m sure it’s a million times worse than I could imagine), but I fractured my foot training for a marathon a few years ago, so I know what it’s like to be hurt and not be able to do much. It’s super frustrating, but it taught me to be patient and appreciate and even just notice the other things in my life more.

Right now my little sisters bring me so much joy. They are 21, 19, and 14 and the two older ones are at ages where we are best friends and it is just so fun to watch the little one grow up into her own person.

I actually do have one question! Did you always want to have a big family? Did you plan for it? I have three sisters and when I start having kids I know I want to have a bunch, but I don’t know if it’s too early to be thinking about that yet.

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So happy to hear that you made it through that injury. Sisters really are the best! I grew up in a family that has five kids….and loved having lots of siblings! So for me having five kids is my normal :)

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The lesson I learned from my injury is that your mind and your body need to be in a balanced relationship. Sometimes I think we want to prove our mental toughness that our own bodies suffer. When the mind truly listens to the body beautiful athleticism can unfold even after injury.
Keep up the good work, so incredibly happy for you!

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Wow! You stated that so beautifully! You are right on! Thanks for your comment :)

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I am a bit new to the HRG blog, so hearing about your back surgery/recovery is so encouraging! Keep up the great work!

I have struggled with injuries on and off over this last year. It’s so hard, but I have found that my faith in God has grown immensely during this time. Choosing joy and gratefulness each day is difficult, but I can honestly say that each morning that I make a conscious decision to be grateful even in hard times is so much better than becoming bitter.

I once came upon my littles who thought it would be fun to decorate the house with a tube of diaper cream! That was an adventure to get off the walls, carpet, clothing, and hair!

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Thanks you so much for your comment. I love hearing examples of people who put their trust in God and choose each day to be grateful. Love that! Also I can’t even imagine how hard that must have been to clean up….I’m off to hide the diaper cream ;)

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lolololol that coming out of the bathroom photo!

I’m so glad that you’re finding your groove again with exercise and are able to do the things you enjoy!

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Ha! His little face was too much! Thanks for your comment….Have a wonderful day :)

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Hey!
I am so happy for you!!!!!!!!! It has to feel so good for your mind and spirit to feel more like “yourself” again. I agree–the body’s capacity to heal is simply amazing.

Like you and Janae, I’m a runner. I had a femoral stress fracture that taught me a LOT last spring. It taught me that I’m more than just “Jen the runner”, to be patient, that we DO heal, and that people who make me laugh are golden to me. I’m recovering from some lower back/hip pain myself right now, and it’s taught me to enjoy other avenues of fitness. I”m totally loving hot yoga right now, and it has been amazing for my back. It’s made me think about running for happiness and longevity more than just running to kill myself and chase PRs.

No questions, I just have to comment how much you and Janae look alike–you are both so beautiful.

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Thank you for your inspiring comment. I loved reading the lessons that you have learned. Also thank you….I love when people tell me that I look like Janae. It makes my day :)

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You look great! So inspiring that you were able to get back to the gym after 5 kids and a major injury. I am lucky to not have had many injuries (knock on wood) but I have struggled to get where I want to be fitness wise since the birth of my second (and last!) child. I am seven months postpartum and I think I have sort of plateaued. I just don’t have the energy I used to – any tips to getting more out of your workouts when you’re exhausted?!

Would also love to hear how you budget/meal plan for 5 kids if you ever get the chance!

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Honestly good for you to be working out after having a baby. It takes so much will power to get out there and exercise when your body craves the sleep it has been so deprived of. I have found that I have to workout in the morning because I just don’t have the energy later on in the day. I will for sure do a post on meals around here. Thanks for your comment!

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Oh I have learned that proper form for weights, running, etc does matter and is important. Had to learn the hard way of course. I’ve also learned to hold back when you notice something off, instead of pushing through into a legit injury. It’s ‘ok’ to step back a little.
My daughter at 1 or 2 years old tipped a Sam’s size container of cocoa powder all over herself and the beige carpet. After my stunned response I of course take photo’s before beginning the cleanup process. I am also amazed at how that stuff sticks to skin and carpet.
What brand of highlighter or color do you use on your hair? If you could choose only 1 move for your arms and 1 for your legs for building muscles/strength what would they be?

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That cocoa mess sounds horrible! I wouldn’t even know where to start in cleaning that up! I love the Redkin line of color and have started using the Pravana line for highlights. Ha! I don’t even know how to answer your last question….It’s like when my kids ask which one of them is my favorite….they are all my favorites and I need them all ;) Sorry that doesn’t really answer that!

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Wow! I am so happy to hear that you are able to do more than you thought you could coming off of back surgery. You look amazing! I, too, have learned to be patient with my body through injuries.

Your family is beautiful, and that photo of your son with the cereal is great! Just two minutes is all it takes. :)

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Thank you for your kind words! It always amazes me how much kids can do in two minutes! Have a great day :)

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Beautiful family <3333

Something that brings me joy – getting out for our after dinner walks as a family. I love that it's staying lighter out later now so we can get out for a little evening walk!

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I love family walks too! There is something about being outside as a family that brings so much joy. Thanks for your comment :)

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I’ve also been tryng to do work more on core and strength lately. I’m glad your muscles are returning. I am super jealous. Your family is so gorgeous.

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Good job on doing more strength training! Have you noticed a difference? Thanks for commenting :)

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Learning to be patient is a huge lesson that injuries have taught me. Trying to go back to early ends up with more time healing. I’m glad the back surgery was so successful and you’re able to be active again.

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That is such an important lesson! Have a great day!

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Your family is adorable and yay for doing so well!!

I’m definitely in a good workout groove right now, and motivation seems to be coming a little more easily. My kiddos are at the age where they are just so much fun and it’s amazing to watch them grow into people.

I’m hoping that my son is growing because last week, he not only knocked over his entire bowl of cereal and milk but he also dropped and spilled an entire bottle of allergy pills. Poor guy.

I would love to know if/how you meal plan. Are you going to try running again anytime soon?

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Glad to hear your in a good workout groove :) I have been running three days a week lately. My back still doesn’t like running two days in a row. So I switch off with other cardio. I will for sure do a post on our meals over here. Thanks for your comments and questions :)

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Not sure if it’s already been asked but what time of day do you run/workout? I feel like I make every excuse to not strength train and I need to. I enjoy running but don’t really have a routine it’s just when I squeeze it in. Also what meals do you prepare for your family. I’m a stay at home mom and sub teach occasionally. And meal planning is hit or miss for us but it’s so nice when I do.
Thank you for sharing and congrats on where you are at!!

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For me I have to workout in the morning. I tend to not have the energy and also life gets so hectic later on in the day. Thanks for the meal planning question…. I will start working on that post. Have a wonderful day!

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You are totally amazing! One kid is all I can handle ;-) Our bodies are remarkable machines! I constantly remind myself that my body is amazing for doing everything it does for me everyday… Good to remember, especially when I start not being happy with how this or that looks ;-) Working out brings muscles and so much more, glad you are able to do more and more things that you missed and enjoy.

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Loved your comment! It’s so important to remember how amazing our bodies are and to be grateful for everything it does. Have a great day!

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How do you keep up with meals at your house? With that many to feed meals and snacks I wonder what you do. I feel like I’m constantly feeding others and just have two kids! You meal plan? Prep ahead? Out of 5 kids any seriously picky eaters? I have one and it’s so hard just always curious how others do it.

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Thanks so much for your questions. I do feel like feeding kids consumes a lot of my day, especially with the two youngest. I will do a post on what we do over here to survive ;) Have a great day!

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Right now, spending time with my husband brings me the most joy! I love it!

Grace! That’s the biggest lesson I’ve learned (and am still learning) — to give myself grace because accidents happen and injuries happen…

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So beautifully put. Thank you for your comment!

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my husband and dog are bringing me joy. I’ve had a rough week and my sweet boys make me smile ☺

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I’m sorry about your rough week. Glad to hear you have your boys in your life to bring you joy. I hope this week is better :)

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wow arms! any advice on arm exercises?

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So glad you’re feeling better, how amazing! Your kids are adorable

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Great post! Wondering what exercises you do for those arms?! I’m a cardio queen but trying to do other things to add some definition to my arms! Yours look great!

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So happy you are getting back in to your workout groove and are pain free now! I’ve had a few injuries and it’s so difficult to be patient when healing but it sure does make us appreciate when we are healthy and pain free :) You look amazing by the way – I can’t believe you’ve had 5 kids!

My daughters, husband and pets bring me loads of joy! And I’m loving spring right now – the longer days and everything blooming has really helped my mood! Have a great day :)

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It’s great to hear that your back surgery was successful and now that your two youngest babies are getting a little older, you’re finding time to get back into your fitness routine. Your three oldest children have grown up so much since I first started reading HRG years ago!

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Question … would you be willing to write a strength training post for the week? I think that along with a post on how you manage your finances for such a large family would be amazing.
How do you find the time to fit in your workouts? I go at 5am before work to get in cardio (generally only have 45-50 minutes) and then I go after work to strength train or yoga (again only have 45 min-hour).

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