This week I vowed to get out of bed at 5:30am and go running at least four times. It is Friday. How many days have I gone running? Zero!
How many times has this happened? At least every week for the last three weeks.
This is an all too common occurrence for me. I say I will get up at some ridiculous hour for a run, or that I will do some form of high-energy exercise three times a week. I always have good intentions but I hardly ever deliver.
The reason why?
Life…. It is getting in the way.
Proudly sponsored by ACT Health – Good Habits for Life
You see, I’m a mum, a wife, an employee, a blogger, a student, a house maintainer. I am all of these things and life is just so busy. So busy in fact, that I don’t get nearly enough exercise that is recommended for an adult female.
Don’t get me wrong, some weeks are easier than others. Sometimes I am able to go for a run once or twice a week when all the moons of my busy life align. While my own exercise routine isn’t a concrete and fluid event as I hope it to be, one thing is for certain – I am, and have always been, active with my family.
Early mornings when the sun has barely opened its eyes, or, late afternoons when the chicks are chirping for food, you will find me running around a park with my son. Chasing birds (usually magpies), picking up random sticks, throwing dirt and woodchips (yes, he is a boy!) and pointing at all the things we can see on our outdoor activity sheet. Otherwise, I’m in the pool teaching my little one how to swim, or splashing each other until our eyes hurt.
On cold days, I snuggle my little one into his pram and we go for a brisk walk. Point out the ducks on the lake, and watch the wildlife bounce by. When it’s raining, we are inside running up and down the hallway playing hide-and-seek. We are hiding behind the couch or under our pillow forts and playing peek-a-book.
It might not be the required 60 minutes of hard-core exercise that I probably need, but it is something. Actually, it is more then something. I am showing my son that being active is important. I am teaching him how to be active, why we do it for our health, and that it is mega fun!
Look, I’m an intelligent woman – I know all the benefits of exercise: keeps my heart healthy, my cholesterol lower, prevents chronic diseases, keeps my weight down…
But what I know and how I behave can often be two different things.
My son, he is only a child. He learns from the adults in his life. He needs a role model to show him why exercise keeps him healthy. He needs someone to instill all these good habits in his young life so he can grow up and have exercise not be a conscious decision, but an automatic motion.
He needs an active mum. He needs an active life. He needs #goodhabitsforlife. If you’re not sure what this might look like, ACT Health have launched a campaign to help you get under way, Good Habits for Life.
Exercise is important. It is important because I have a child and I am role modelling for him, what it means to be healthy.
I might not get my own exercise in every single day, but I get exercise in with my little one, and this is quality time with him that cannot be replicated.
Tomorrow morning, I will definitely get up and go running.
And then later, I will go to the park with my son.
Perhaps, it’s not that life is ‘getting in the way’, but that perhaps this is the life.
What’s your favourite activity to do with your child? For more ideas, check out Good Habits for Life.