The previous Kick It Like Mom article Unlocking Your Potential talked about how much focus we put on our children’s potential rather than on our own and asked the question: What can we accomplish when we focus on improving ourselves rather than just doing?
I’ve set out on a 6 -week journey to find out. I’m attending a comprehensive Women’s Soccer Academy put on by Pro Skills Soccer and professional players Keelin Winters and Dani Foxhoven of the Seattle Reign FC. The course guarantees you’ll leave a stronger overall player and athlete. Can this 30-something soccer mom still learn some new tricks in the sport I love or should I leave well enough alone? I’ll be sharing what I learn!
“Make it work!” ~Tim Gunn: Project Runway
In my younger, pre-kid years I had the time and freedom to pursue any sports and fitness activities I wanted, wherever I wanted, whenever I wanted. Want to go running during lunch break? Sure, or maybe after work instead. Want to grab a ball for some soccer practice this weekend? You bet! Then let’s go grab brunch!
Those were the days.
Now have a (truly wonderful!) mini- person attached to my hip with a schedule that dictates our day and my body doesn’t recover from physical activity quite as quickly as it used to.
These small details have presented a bit of an obstacle as I complete my 6 week soccer academy. Each week we are assigned a 1.5 hour coached skills clinic, a 45 minute practice session to be done on our own and a 30 minute warm-up session to be completed before our games. This is on top of the 2 games I already play each week. It’s a bit overwhelming.
I’ve learned with motherhood, though, that you just have to do the best you can! So I had to get creative.
I’m not going to be able to go to a soccer field to practice with my 2 year old in tow. There is no chance she would stay put. Also, winters here in Seattle mean wind, rain and a flooded backyard. Luckily we have a big, empty living room which has turned out to be a great space to practice. I knew there was a reason we hadn’t bought furniture yet! Keeping the ball quiet and controlled on the hardwoods is challenging and making me work harder.
Also, most days I don’t have the time to complete a full practice session. Moms have very limited “free-time”. But I can break the sessions up and do a bit at a time…and that is far better than doing nothing at all! I sat down and scheduled these mini work-out sessions during naptimes and on days my body would be recovered from other workouts and games.
This is how I’m making it work. (Sort of!)
So how is it going so far?
The other day I got extremely lucky with a rare sunny winter day so outside I went! I worked on some dribbling skills which are difficult to do inside. I’m sure my neighbors were looking out and wishing I was cleaning up the yard or taking down our Christmas lights instead (It’s February). Sorry neighbors!
With about 5 minutes of practice left my daughter woke up from her nap. I figured, she loves soccer too, surely she could come outside and kick her ball around until I had finished. How silly of me!
Here’s what happened. (Note: This is not exaggerated and if you have a toddler you can guess how it ends)
Minute 5: Meltdown over wanting to swim in kiddie pool left out since August. (Will spare you the visual!)
That was the end of practice.
Despite some road bumps I am starting to see improvement. Sticking with the program and persisting through the assigned soccer drills appears to be paying off. And the easier it gets the more practice I want to do.
When working to achieve an important goal it is inevitable you will be met with obstacles along the way. Just remember:
- Be realistic!
- Get creative!
- Schedule. Schedule. Schedule.
- Keep at it! Remember why you took on your challenge in the first place.
- Keep Calm and Carry On!
How have you “Made it Work” to achieve your goals? Leave a Comment!