Join Arena and SwimOutlet.com for an exclusive glimpse into the personal life of four-time Olympic gold medalist and mother of two, Janet Evans. From dawn to dusk, Janet takes us along for a typical day: training for the Olympics, raising a family, training for the Olympics some more, a television interview or two - then finally retiring to her home for a night with the family before getting up the next day and doing it all over again...
Thanks for hosting this contest -- it's so helpful to hear from other moms about how they create time and balance for their swim time!
Unfortunately, as I was trying to be super-mom and super-wife I was slowly becoming super-weak me. I have long since overcome that imbalance and live a very healthy balanced life. Swimming is a huge part that. I do not train for races when I swim, I would more so call it training for my day. It affords me time away from everyone where I can focus on me, and my health. I feel energized during and afterwards; and the results are my family gets a more plugged in, healthy, happy mom. Finding a healthy balance with everything in your life is important. As much as I love being at home with my family, and would not trade it for the world. Quiet time in the lane helps me to maintain who I am outside of them......most of all Balanced.
my brothers death last year at 52 years of age due to unhealthy living --it woke me up to the health risk factors in our family. Since starting swimming last year I have lost 48 pounds, all my numbers have normalized (bp, cholesterol & sugars), and I have found something I love to do at the age of 43 weekly with my daughter. I'm trying to live a healthful life by example, and I it has brought my daughter & I so close as well as improve our lives in many ways.
My oldest is now swimming on an age group team and loving it. Her favourite activity on weekends is swimming, despite practising 5 days a week! My youngest has recently started the intro level at the team and wants to swim just like her big sister. Both of them practise straight after school, which leaves us the rest of the evening for dinner and family time together.
Good luck in Olympic trials!
I am Swim
Swim I am
I do not like that Swim-I-am!
Do you like imbalance and unhappy family?
I do not like them,
I do not like
Imbalance and unhappy family
Would you like them
Here or there?
I would not like them here or there.
I would not like them anywhere.
I do not like imbalance and unhappy family.
I do not like them, Swim-I-am
Would you like them in your life?
Would you like an unhappy wife?
I do not like them in my life
I do not like an unhappy wife
I do not like them here or there
I do not like them anywhere
I do not like imbalance and unhappy family.
I do not like them, Swim-I-am
If you let me be,
I will try it.
You will see.
I like balance and a happy family!
I do!! I like them Swim-I-am!
And I would spend time just for me…
It helps keep me balanced, just wait and see!
And I would swim before work…
It’s like my own little perk!
And then I’m healthy when I’m done…
So I can be at peace with my family and have some fun!
I focus my energy on the activity and hand…
So with my family they know they’re grand!
It can be crazy but I know it can be attained…
It’s the complete balance that keeps me sustained!
Health mind, body, and soul…
This balance with family is always my goal!
I do so like
Balance and happy family!
The children I work with gives me the desire to do the things I do so I can be there for them at school.
I coached her CYO swim team and then assisted with her high school team. Once she was in school, I could drop her off at school or the bus stop, get in an hour's swim before I started work (teaching), then still get in my run at lunch.
Now she is in college and I am retired. This let s me swim 3mornings a week and run every day of the week. I hope by doing so to set a good example for her and for the high school where I continue to be the assistant swim coach.
I am most impressed that you are all so committed to your families. Sure, swimming is the glue that holds you together through the long workouts, swim meets, traveling, and work, but I'll bet you'd do that whether it was soccer, tennis, baseball, water polo, dance, etc.
Keep up the good work! It will pay off when the children are grown.
This works out well for all us!
I am a competitive masters swimmer with Las Vegas Masters. Our team is in the pool every weekday at 5:30 am until 7:00. I try to make at least 3-4 practices per week. Sometimes it is rough due to business travel and other obligations. My husband is very supportive and usually takes our sons to their respective school buses before 6:00 am. On those days when I cannot make the team's practice, I manage to swim 3000 yards or so while our sons are at their swim practice in the early evening or cross train in at the gym or go for a run. When I am not swimming, being a full-time mom and wife, I am an attorney. I am a shareholder in a small law firm in Las Vegas. I guess that I practice a lot. I practice swimming and I practice law. Maybe someday I will get it right.
I am very proud of my family and their commitment to fitness and good health, and swimming is a big part of that.
First, my husband....Gaining the support of a partner is key in making it all work! He stays home (usually in bed!) while I am at the gym at 5 or out on a bike ride....He gets everyone out of bed (too early!) to get the kids to my races....He supports my decision to get, not one, but two new bikes in one year!
Second, my friends....having friends that are also athletes are key! They understand what it's like when you are pressed for time....so we offer to watch each other's kids, or pick each other's kids up from school to fit in a workout.
Last, but not least, the kids....the kids KNOW how important this is to me. We talk about it; It is part of our life. They see my bike parked on the trainer in the basement, they hear me talk about my workouts and how it makes me feel. And now they want to run road races and do triathlons!
It is a challenge to make everything work....but it does work and it, indeed, does take a village...
First, swim early (in the pool by 6am) – you never know what family emergencies might interrupt your schedule later in the day.
Second, make your kids PART of your swim routine:
• Ages 1-3: Don’t lift weights. Lift your kids! Try push-ups with your child on your back. Have your child cling to your leg while you stand in a doorway (for balance) and do leg lifts. Be creative. You’ll get in a surprisingly strong workout, but for you’re kids it’s all just good fun!
• Ages 4-10: Swim while your kids swim. I always scheduled swim lessons for my two boys (three years apart in age) in the same time slot. Then I’d get in the pool and swim, too.
• Tweens and above: Swim with your kids. Hopefully by now, your children will like swimming as much as you do. My older son’s birthday present to me each year is to swim the 1.5-mile circumference of Walden Pond (in Concord, MA) at my side. It’s a tremendous joy and special bond!
If necessary, treading water with an 18mo old on your hip is surprisingly good aerobic training!
Most importantly, make sure your family understands the importance of exercise and that Mom needs her exercise (and alone time) as much as anyone else. That makes for a much happier Mommy in our house!)
school both my children ages 15 and 12. I work from 8:00-3:00pm, race home to grab the kids and the swim bags and we are off to swim practice. Everybody gets to practice on time and I head to the pool myself. I do my swimming while the kids doing swim team practice. I always make sure I get in and swim while they are; even if I am tired or don't want to. What motivates me to get in the pool and workout is to look down the lane lines and see my kids working hard at their swim practice. Working out when my kids work out makes exercising on a regular basis easy and I stay motivated. Also, staying healthy and fit is important to me and my family.
As a mother, I have learned (and sometimes the hard way) that I only have control over certain things in my children's lives. Being able to balance the dedication and consistency of healthy habits with the daily grind of life is a process that can only be learned through experience. It is a concept that I would only feel right expecting of them if I am doing it myself. Swim workouts are hard. They don't always come at convenient times or with convenient weather. But to be able to take the stress of life, and sweat it out, is something each individual has to learn and experience for themselves. I often times tell my daughters before swim practice, to "just leave it in the pool."
2) Have a good dinner ready for the family after evening work/practice. A good nutritious meal (that just needs to be heated and served) is a great way to spend quality family time together while unwinding. A few hours later, we have to do it all over again!
I have now been teaching swimming to toddlers to Senior citizens (I think I am one now too at 51!) for over 12 years and coaching Club, HS, and summer league which I did back in HS and college as well. The love for water never leaves! Can't wait for our USA Swimming Splash Bash and the Summer Olympic Swimming! Good Luck Janet!
Don't sweat the small stuff: This motto allows me to take a deep breath and prioritize. For example: Our house is not perfectly clean all the time (not to the standards of many, like my grandmother). The laundry is clean but certainly not always folded, a dirty dish may be in the sink, the yard may not be as impeccably manicured as the next door neighbors (nobody can accuse me of trying to keep up with The Jones) and I am OK with that! I prioritize: Being present for my daughter and being a good mom is the most important thing in my life...I will never take time to swim, bike or run if it means sacrificing something important for her or in her life. I work full time and although enjoy a flexible schedule, it
I am so impressed by Janet Evans' dedication and talent. Good luck to her at trials and beyond!
I really give you credit for what you do you have to love it to work so hard at it. God Bless & Good Luck I well be praying for you!!!!
I use Sunday to prep for the week, do all the grocery shopping and cook as many of the dinner items as possible for the week to make for quick dinners. After the kids go to bed, I get everything ready (lunches/backpacks/my swim bag) for the next day.
Me time/workout: 5:30 AM master swimm or 6 AM bike 10 miles to work
If the AM workout doesn't happen, don't sweat it; fit in an alternate workout later or take a recovery day.
Work and school time: focus on doing the best job i can at work
Family time/end of the day: be completely present to my kids, undivided attention to home, relish spending time with them & seeing them grow.
...and if theres time take long walks with the kids or ride bikes. or go to bed early and chat with them before sending them off to bed.
So I decided that I would not waste that precious childhood time in "nos".
I made a list of things that I really did not want my child to do (some of the above are on that list), and made up my mind that if something was not on that list I would NOT waste time on it.
For my daughter and I this worked out vvery well. We did NOT have very much conflict. In fact, I am still waiting for my daughter to be a "bad" kid. And, since she is now 35 years old, I think my methods have proved successful.
Thanks for the opportunity to share this.
I have to add a bit about the health benefits and what I've accomplished. I had open heart surgery 14 years ago (when my daughter was a few months old.) The surgeons performed 5 bypasses. Aft
1. Make sure you get to practice. When you're happy, they're is happy.
2. Give back to the world of swim. Coach, time, carpool, sponsor. Do something for the sport that does so much for you.
3. Promise your husband a great night out in exchange for a swim meet. Shoot for the out of state ones. After the competition's over, it's a mini-vacation.
Go Gators Barbara
YOU ARE AWSOME! I'M ROOTING FOR YOU!
We're excited that Janet, mom-athlete, is working to head to London! We're cheering her on!
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