You know when you’re in middle school and you’re doing algebra and you’re like, “Why do I care what B equals? When am I going to use this information in life?” (said, of course, with a super angsty voice).
Or when you’re feeling the burn during your third round of squats and you’re like, “Put me out of my misery! Why am I doing this? When am I actually going to use this in life?” (also said in an angsty voice).
Well, it turns out that the answer to both of those questions is, “When you’re helping your husband install flooring in your house.”
Because yessirree, when you decide to tackle an easy DIY project because certain people make you think you can do anything (ahem, Jennifer and her tips; it started with painting a couple of rooms and has spiraled into my living room being moved into my office so we can install the flooring), just because it’s dubbed “easy” and “anyone can do it” doesn’t mean that it’s not physically or mentally taxing.
My husband and I decided to install laminate over our old hardwoods. Hardwood purists be like “But why?” but trust me, the floors are not that great. Our house was built in 1927, so they’ve already been refinished and there is wood fill in between huge gaps between planks and they’re just in a general state of dated disrepair. Being the badass that I am, once my husband and I decided on a product (a whole other post because we have reasons and we did our research) I went to Home Depot and got the 24 boxes of laminate myself. Then I proceeded to help load the not-super-light boxes into the van. And then unload all of the not-super-light boxes by myself. Out of the van. Up the stairs into the dining room. Over and over. Twenty-four times. It was a lot.
Then of course prep and installation are whole other workouts themselves. They involve an incredible amount of bending and lifting and finding squeaks in the hardwood floors, then drilling and leveling wholly unlevel floors (almost 90 years of a house settling means nothing is level and nothing is square). I’ve lifted thousands of pounds of planks — and I’ve squatted about a million times. And you should have seen me last night, prancing around the floors, trying to find any spots that are unlevel; my calves were burning. (Seriously, a 90-year-old house means that we got most of the floor down and then found a couple of spots we have to go back and level — super fun times! Laying floors is so fun we get to do it twice!)
My point is: Fitness is for life. It’s not just for looking good in your bikini. Or about getting into your pre-pregnancy jeans. It’s about being strong so you’re able to do home projects and carry power tools. It’s about being able to carry a toddler on your hip while you’re pushing a stroller. It’s about being able to carry bags of mulch when you’re 30 weeks pregnant because you’re going to plant flowers and you must have that heavy-ass mulch during the day when you’ve got to load it yourself. It’s about being able to lift and carry 36-packs of juice cartons without throwing your back out. Those squats might not feel fun in the moment, but I’ll tell you: When you can carry 24 boxes of planks or squat for eight hours and barely feel sore or tired? Yeah, those workouts are doing the trick.
What’s made you feel like a badass lately? Even though our floors are far from done, I can taste the success. If we can ever get them level, that is. —Erin