dear mr. president, thanks.

thanks for forcing me to cancel my gym membership.

hey, you're welcome.

it all started at the beginning of the year when my little family of three fell off the fiscal cliff. i know, i know, the government agreed on a plan to avoid that. yup, we all drank the kool-aid and breathed a sigh of relief that our income taxes would not increase.

and then we were blindsided by the 2% increase in social security taxes. ouch. and our health insurance costs went up. ugh. and the cost-of-living is redonkulous. boo. bottom. of. the. cliff. i popped open my trusty laptop and created a family budget, but after chopping the luxuries and dropping the necessities down to the bare bones, we were still not in the black. it was time for slash and burn tactics. thus, i cancelled my gym membership. budget success. fitness fail.

what?! yes. i cancelled my gym membership. after fourteen months of diligently dragging myself to spin class four days a week, i was suddenly going to be on my own. luckily, i had recently discovered the joy of walking to the state park near our house. i stomped along to my music and big-E watched the world go by. awesome for both of us and four miles round trip. plus, big-E got to run around and explore the park. golden. i got off to a great start. every day i came home from work, changed, packed big-E into the stroller and off we went.

and then one day, i got a bug up my bum wondering what would happen if i tried to run part of the way. i started slow, alternating between jogging and walking. each day i would jog a little further. and one day i jogged half of the way home. and the next day i jogged all the way home. and then i jogged both ways. and next thing you know, i was jogging 4 miles a day, 6 days a week. pushing a stroller.

what?! yes. this kid, a self-proclaimed NON-RUNNER, suddenly turned into a runner. okay, fine, 15-minute miles probably only qualify me to be called a jogger. same effing difference people!! and i am addicted. fo' reals, yo. i jog four days a week and walk two days a week. since the first of the year, i have jogged/walked 150 miles. mind blowing.

mama runs faaast!!

but wait, there is more. more? yes, more. recently, while en route to the park, just for fun i sped up for the second mile. and after doing this a few times, i clocked it at 10 minutes. a ten-minute mile! in the grand scheme of things, i am aware that i am not exactly burning up the pavement. i am sure i know plenty of people who can run a 10-minute mile going backwards, but seriously y'all, that is by far, the fastest my two feets have carried me since middle school.

go mama!!

so, mr. president, thanks to you (and the members of congress), i find myself fitter and faster than i have been in over twenty years. and my pants fit better. i have been tightening the belt figuratively and literally. congratulations to me.

hey, you're welcome.