Disclosure: Diary of a First Time Mom partnered with  Ziploc® brand to show how ordinary moms can do extraordinary things when they join the tough mother movement. Although some form of compensation was received, all opinions remain my own.

Dear Diary,

Recently, I’ve used every excuse in the book not to exercise. I’m a working mom. I’m a single mom. I’m a momtrepreneur. Every month, I pay a membership fee to a gym that I never step inside. The more excuses I give, the more money I flush down the drain. It makes me wonder if I can claim the contribution on my taxes. It’s like I’m cutting a check to charity.

Before I became a mom, the front-desk clerk at my gym knew my name and my class schedule. I attended everything — 5 a.m. boot camp, after-work water aerobics, Saturday spin class. I even kicked butt in karate. I ate salads and drank water.

Ziploc Tough Mother 1

That was many moons ago. So when my co-worker told me about a recent Tough Mudder competition, I looked at her like she had two heads. I play in the mud with my daughter, which is about as messy as it’s going to get.

Tough Mudder Collage

I felt bad at first. I wondered, what happened to the Heather who lifted weights and ran around a track when she put on a few extra pounds? Was that woman still buried beneath the love handles my loving daughter deposited? Then, I remembered what actress Kerry Washington asked the press recently, “Why would I want to return to my pre-miracle body?” I also watched the Ziploc® brand Tough Mother YouTube video, which illustrates that moms’ lives are often like an obstacle course. We’re constantly cleaning, multi-tasking and carpooling. I may not jump through a ring of fire like the mudders, but I jump through my fair share of hoops on my journey through motherhood. So why wallow in self-pity? Instead, I’m redefining my workout routine, even if that means starting out slow.

Ziploc Tough Mother 2

I’m working on staying active as a family. Over the weekend, we took a trip to an amusement park where my daughter, Caitlynn, and I drove bumper boats.

Ziploc Tough Mother 3

And we took a swing at miniature golf.

Since it was a long day of activities, we prepped a snack in a new Ziploc® brand Snack bag with Easy Open Tabs, which I could easily dig out of my “gym” bag.

Ziploc Tough Mother 4

Then, we dodged balls in an interactive play space. You definitely break a sweat maneuvering through the obstacles!

Afterward, like most first-time moms, I whipped out the hand sanitizer, which didn’t leak in my bag thanks to the new Ziploc® brand bags with Easy Open Tabs. There is a reason Ziploc® brand was recently named the most trusted brand among women.

Ziploc Tough Mother 5

And, if I happen to drain my energy while being a kid again, I can skip cooking and pull out my Ziploc® Containers.

Ziploc Tough Mother 6

Want to join the Tough Mother movement? It’s not so tough! Just follow these simple steps.

Create a Realistic Workout

The gym doesn’t fit into my current schedule. Although it should, it doesn’t. I can’t keep lying to myself, so instead I started walking in the park and researching an exercise machine to buy for my home. Set your own expectations. I don’t compete with my 20-something co-worker. I push myself to be the best me I can possibly be.

Get Organized

Don’t let a hungry kid put a halt to your workout, especially if you are in the zone. I use new Ziploc® brand Snack Bags with Easy Open Tabs to pack snacks. You can also pack things like crayons. If you’re exercising, your little one can color. If you bring along markers and a paper towel, the bag can convert into a makeshift dry-erase board. (This also comes in handy when Caitlynn tags along to my meetings for work.) The new gallon-size Ziploc® brand Storage Bags with Easy Open Tabs are great to separate your sweaty clothes or dirty sneakers from other items in your duffle bag. And if you ever get injured, you can fill the bag with ice to make a cold compress.

Embrace Your Post-Miracle Body

Look in the mirror and tell yourself how beautiful you are. Your stretch marks are mom tattoos. Your love handles are lovable. You look good!

About The Author

Vlog Mom/DFTM Creator

Not long ago, Heather Hopson hosted a television show in the Cayman Islands. Today, she's back home writing a different kind of story as a new mom. In her 15 years working as a professional journalist, this by far is her best assignment! Growing up, she dreamed of becoming Oprah Winfrey. She was the features editor for her school’s newspaper and a teen talk show host for her city’s most popular radio station. She went on to earn a bachelor’s degree in Journalism from Michigan State University. After graduation, she worked as a television producer and reporter at CBS, NBC and Fox affiliates throughout the U.S. Instead of heading to Chicago to join Ms. Winfrey on her set, she bought a plane ticket to the Cayman Islands instead. She arrived five days before a category five hurricane! She lived in paradise for seven years, hosted an award-winning television show and traveled the globe with a government delegation. She also served on the board of directors for Big Brothers Big Sisters and spearheaded a Send a Kid to Camp campaign. Then, she relocated to Washington, D.C. to obtain a teaching certification and instruct 8th grade reading at a high needs middle school. She later returned to her hometown of Pittsburgh, PA to raise her daughter Caitlynn, now 4-years-old. During her 10-month-stint as a stay-at-home mom, Caitlynn inspired her to create this blog, and Diary of a First Time Mom was born on Mother’s Day 2012. Two years later, she expanded the family to include 20+ writers. Currently, Heather serves as the communications director at Allies for Children. In addition, she is the owner of Motor Mouth Multimedia, which ranked #49 in Startup Nation’s Home-Based 100 Competition sponsored by Discover Card and Sam’s Club. Recently, The Pittsburgh Foundation and The Heinz Endowments selected Heather to receive an Emerging Black Artist award to develop Diary of a First Time Mom.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.