Toddler Temper Tantrums and Running: Eerily Similar

Most days, Brax is a happy little fellow.

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Like when he gets frozen yogurt w his equally happy father!

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Or when he’s hanging with Great Grandma, eating oranges, and hiking with his sweet sissy!

But sometimes, that orange smile is turned upside down.  He doesn’t have  TON of tantrums, but when he does, holy. bananas.  It usually happens just when I think, “Wow, it’s been a while since he’s had a…

How, you wonder, are running and tantrums in any way related?  Well, for one, they both take LOTS of endurance, muscles, and positive, calm thoughts.  On my part, that is.

Here’s what I mean.

Temper tantrums, I have observed, have two main levels in relation to running. In life, we always hear about the marathon and the sprint metaphor. Well, I am here to tell you this is also metaphor for the Toddler Temper Tantrum. I’ll call it the Triple T of horribleness.  Because three is WAY WORSE than two.  Terrible twos my foot. The road to threes have been simultaneously the most adorable, fascinating, fun, and challenging age so far for me.  I love how much he’s learning (for example, last night he learned how an entire tube of butt paste would look smeared all over himself), how much he’s talking, playing, and growing into a little man.  But the tantrums.  Oh.  The tantrums.  There are two main kinds:

How to Shut Down a Temper Tantrum. This is for "kids" of all ages! ;-)
A family picture during a Triple T

There is the Marathon Tantrum and the Sprint Tantrum.  And probably multiple variations of 5ks, 10ks, and half marathons.  But we’ll focus on the core two for now.

In the Marathon Tantrum, the child simply cries and whines for a very extended period of time. Braxton has gone on for close to an hour before. It might not be loud- sometimes it is as silent as the child laying on the floor in fetal position. There are few things to be done to get child out of this tantrum. Usually this type is caused by extreme fatigue and only will be cured by the sleep that comes after fighting child to do bedtime routine- usually omitting one portion (FINE, forget brushing your teeth tonight. They can all fall out.) just to move things along.

In the Sprint Tantrum, the child is extremely loud and ferocious…perhaps because their pants are actually shorts or they wanted the minion underwear, not the basketballs.  These really do not last long. Usually, they are caused by the child feeling out of control because they want something they cannot have or do something they cannot do. Child can often be over this quickly by a little bargaining, distraction, or child simply realizing this isn’t going to happen. But when this tantrum is in full swing- watch out and do not go in public. Unless it starts in public. Then you’re doomed.

Sprints and marathons and tantrums are all tough to go through.  You always feel pretty good when they’re over.  You feel accomplished when you get the tantrum to stop and when you’ve finished your run.  You’re always a little emotionally and physically drained.

I haven’t seen the physical benefit yet from the tantrums.  Unless I can count the few times I’ve had to carry my threenager kicking and screaming out of a store using every muscle in my body.  Also, I’m pretty sure his lungs are getting a six-pack.

Anatomy of a temper tantrum.....haha my son has this down to a art.

You see, running and tantrums are more similar than you ever thought!  And they both make us parents stronger people!  Thanks, kids!  Whether telling us to suck it up and run, or building our muscles in grocery stores, they’re just here to help!

Braxinshoes
Last night, he insisted on taking a walk in my shoes around the block, to the delight of many neighbors and myself.  I haven’t laughed so hard in a long time.  He’s so freaking awesome most of the time, I’ll take a few tantrums.  (Just don’t ask me that when we’re in the middle of one…)

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