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How Fitness Helps Me Maintain My Mental Health As a SAHM

At 6am, the alarm clock goes off. By alarm clock, I mean one of my 2 offspring has decided that my night is over and that I've had my quota of sleep.

Then, I have to synchronize between preparing breakfast, changing diapers, dressing one while the other is watering the plant with the remains of a beer can from the previous night's guests (what? Am I the only one who doesn't have the courage to clean everything before going to bed?). Anyway, it's a beautiful new day that begins.

But that's still okay, we warm up gently, and it's best when we look at the time and it's only... 8:15. Oh my god, time is not passing. And we'll have to improvise and innovate to distract these little creatures.

Between two screams of joy and frustration, I catch a glimpse of my head in the mirror, accompanied by my beautiful tracksuit with its lovely little vomit stain that gives it a very... authentic look. What a sight. But that's not to mention the flabbiness of my body, which hasn't done any sports for years. But it doesn't matter, after all, I've already seduced and attracted the male to me, and I keep him bound to me forever thanks to the children. Why should I still be attractive or feel like it? What is my usefulness now except to manage this family with a masterful hand? Well, yes, because I wanted to be a stay-at-home mom. So why would I have anything to say about it? Don't I have the chance to take it easy all day at home while my man works so hard?

Does anyone in the audience identify with these statements?

Of course, because anyone who is entrusted with a mission in which they give their all their energy and attention but cannot draw energy back repeatedly over a very long period and daily will eventually feel cynical about the situation (that is the best-case scenario, but generally, we are also exhausted and reconsidering our life choices, even on the verge of depression). And this has nothing to do with the love we have for our children. Obviously, we love them more than anything in this world, and the love we feel for them is so powerful and so pure that no words can ever explain it to someone who has not experienced it.

That being said, we must also think of OURSELVES. And believe it or not, I am convinced that we still have tons of reasons to feel beautiful, desirable, and attractive (even if the male is already trapped with us). Firstly, to please ourselves. Haven't you noticed that those rare days when we find time to prepare ourselves a little bit, we immediately feel better? Well, here I am talking about establishing something in our daily lives that lasts over time and can help us feel infinitely better.

For me, it was fitness. I used to practice regularly before my first pregnancy, but things happened, and I had a second child without ever doing sports since my first pregnancy. And then there's also my addiction to ice cream (I'll talk about it in another article).

But then I knew I had to go back to it, and I learned that there were fitness centers with integrated daycare. It wasn't necessarily the best daycare, but for an hour, it can work. So I took out a subscription to the club closest to my home with daycare, and off I went.

And there...just after the first session, with all the endorphins released by my body, I felt a sense of well-being that I hadn't felt in a long time. I had been able to devote an hour just to myself by doing something good for my body. And the fact that I knew I could do it again the next day meant that going to train was not a chore but something I really wanted to do. My motivation was to have that hour for myself.

So I continued like this for the following weeks and months, and I can tell you - in addition to starting to regain a firm and toned body - I especially saw the effects on my "mental health". I have a lot more patience with the children on the days when I go to train. Moreover, the fact of going out, taking the children with me, installing them in the car, driving, etc. also makes the time go by. Generally, I get up around 6:30-7am, I prepare a good breakfast around 8:30 and around 9-9:30, I head to the gym. Then I train for an hour and some days I even go to the sauna or hammam afterwards. It's usually around 11am by the time I pick up the kids, walk to the car, and get them settled. When we get home, we start preparing dinner (of course, we can have meals ready in advance, but I love cooking. And as you will have understood; it makes time go by). Then we eat at noon and at 1pm it's nap time. Generally, I also nap or work on Motivetrack. Then it's already 3pm and the day seems to have flown by at lightning speed. Moreover, after a workout, a sauna, a good meal, and a nap, I'm refreshed and full of energy to take care of the children, what could be better? (there are better days than others of course, but I wanted to share this with you because it really changed my life as a stay-at-home mom).

Sport, in whatever form, is in my opinion the ultimate ally of moms (with a good dose of organization but I think we all naturally develop this talent) because it releases feel-good hormones in our body, gives us our hour just for ourselves, and helps us to regain the body we had before. It is no longer necessary to motivate ourselves to go to the gym (as was the case for me before), but it becomes a necessity to go there.

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