Today on the blog we’re introducing you to the amazing moms who work at J&A Racing. We chat with Amy, Lori, Kate, and Jamie on their best mom-advice and memories, ranging from how they juggle being work and life, running in motherhood, and things they have been loving recently! As moms of toddlers, teens, and adults, we hope that whatever age your kids are, this encourages all of our J&A community moms out there to know you are doing a great job (and we hope maybe you’ll find something new to add your wishlist!) ;)
How has running helped you as a mom and what do you want your kids to learn from seeing you run?
Kate: Running is both my mental and physical outlet from all things- not just parenthood. I like that my children see me getting dressed for a workout and automatically ask if I am going for a run. I also like that they will ask to join me in my at-home workouts. Seeing them enjoy working out with me is super cute! But, working for a running company, my children think that all I do is run all day at work 😊
Jamie: Running helps me clear my mind and stay physically fit for the long days. It’s so important to model healthy behaviors, because kids are more likely to copy what we do, not what we say! I hope they have learned that it’s fun to take on physical challenges and work hard to overcome them.
Amy: Running helped me to be more patient and allowed me to burn off steam and talk to friends I run with about parenting. Both of our girls saw us run and be healthy and have adopted running and being healthy as they have grown.
Lori: Running helps me with sanity. I love my kids but they can make me insane sometimes…running helps:). It is also important to show the kids the importance of health and taking care of your body and mind.
What advice would you give to a new mom?
Lori: Don’t use the kids as an excuse why you can’t get out there and exercise. You AND the kids will all benefit from it. You will be a better person and mom and kids will have someone to look up to.
Jamie: The words you speak over your kids are powerful. That, and get a great jog stroller with big wheels!
Amy: Get your runs and workouts in. It is the best thing you can do for yourself and your mental health. Explain this to your partner that you need this time for your family.
Kate: Hang in there! Motherhood truly is an amazing gift but can also be exhausting! Be sure to carve out time for yourself- whether it be running solo, enjoying a cup of coffee, or just a solo trip to the grocery store- make sure to make time for YOU! I remember someone telling me “moments are long, but the years are short” and that is SO true! Soak it all in!
Do you have a favorite race memory with your kids?
Jamie: Garrett, now 20, and I once ran a Santa 5K. He was about 8 years old and had never run that far before. It was so fun sticking together, talking to him through it and seeing him have the endurance to keep going. We were dressed festively and took a finish line pic together. It’s in a Christmas frame and comes out of the attic every year!
Amy: Jerry and I ran the Richmond 8K with our daughter Kelly when she was 12. She did so well and our photo was in the newspaper the next day, it made her day. We stayed with her the whole time and encouraged her along the way. She stayed positive and lead the pace.
Kate: The Leprechaun Dash during Shamrock Weekend is absolutely a highlight with my children. I have 2 young daughters (2 and 5) and they both got to participate this year. It was so fun to see them enjoy participating in Shamrock Weekend, and they REALLY were excited about the snacks and medals at the finish.
Lori: My favorite race moment was watching Hadley run a race in a full arm cast, and finish with a smile, while so many other kids wouldn’t even do it!
What’s one key thing that helps you balance work and having a family?
Lori: Communication and expectations from all.
Kate: Work/family life balance is key…but really hard! I have not mastered it yet, but I will say having a supportive family that encourages you to find success in the workplace is amazing. And then balancing that with finding an employer that values your time with your family…that is the perfect combo!
Amy: Get out of bed early to get your workouts in and set your daily intentions. It is too easy to lose focus throughout the day if you don’t set your intention early.
Jamie: I like having a routine – evenings get crazy with sports and other obligations right now, but I like to make breakfast in the morning and have those few minutes together…even if my teen at home is not a morning person!
What’s something you’ve been loving lately that would make a great gift for otheri moms out there?
Kate: Do a race! Just. Do. It! I recently participated in a 10 Miler out of town, and it was the first time in a LONG time I felt like I accomplished something just for me. Grab a friend, pick a race, and do it! Better yet- for all your dads out there- give the gift of running!
Amy: I’m a sucker for new running socks, they are something to splurge on at least once a month. One random thing I purchased that I am enjoying is my platform Birkenstocks. They are fashionable and comfortable :)
Lori: A garmin. Counting my steps helps me move more.
Jamie: The best Mother’s Day gifts are the coupons like I got when the kids were little. I’d love to receive a new coupon for “unlimited hugs for a day”!