We all know the health benefits of exercising, we buy vegetables (and hope they get eaten before they spoil), we take our vitamins (when we remember) and we have every intention of getting to the gym. Reality hits and we all know exercise is typically the first item to be dropped from our long list of things-to-do when we get busy.
What can we do?
The fact is, the only way exercise will become a part of your day is if you schedule it in and make it important. You have to fit in fitness. Those who say they don’t have time are really saying, it’s not a priority. I was raised in an active family and have always understood the importance of a healthy lifestyle. That doesn’t mean it has always been easy to fit it in. Looking back over my adult years I see where I lapsed; in university, after knee surgery and my for my first pregnancy there were months that I never got out for a run. Then came baby number two and baby number three and my opportunities to run or workout didn’t exist!
How do I fit in fitness?
Once my 3 daughters were born, I was determined to fit in fitness and make it a priority to lose the baby weight. In fact, my three proudest achievements came after the birth of each of my children; crossing a half-marathon finish line with my husband by my side and each of our daughters in a jogging stroller when they were just 8 months old! I did whatever I had to in order to get in those runs.
I started with a three km run/walk until I could run the distance without stopping. I then added five minutes every weekend. Within a few months I was running for two hours and ready to try my first half marathon with our first child in a jogging stroller. Twelve months later I had my second child and my training program started again; only this time it was trickier to get out running as I am not a double stroller kind of gal. Determination paid off and eight months later my husband and I crossed another finish line at the Ottawa half marathon with our second daughter. ? When we had baby number three I wondered when the heck I would ever run again. We committed to the Quebec half marathon just 8 months after her birth and I started again! I got up early, I ran in the cold, I ran when I was tired and I ran when I would have rather stayed home and had breakfast with my family. I took my babies to the local YMCA and put them in programs so I could run on a treadmill. Sure enough, we crossed that finish line – with our 3rd daughter in a jogging stroller and in our best time yet!
Today, my daughters are 6, 8 and 10 and they have each already done their first triathlon and two family 5km runs – we are a truly an active family, just like the one I grew up in.
Over the years it has been a struggle to find time to fit in fitness; but I keep at it and have gotten very creative in my ways to sneak in a run! I have been known to run to my child’s soccer game while the rest of the family drives in the van. I drop my daughter at a birthday party and go for a run until it’s time to pick her up again. My husband & I even hire babysitters for an hour or two on weekend mornings so we can bike or run together – its our version of “Date Night.”
If it is a priority to fit in fitness, you will make it happen.
Make your health an important item on your to do list, schedule time in your week, commit to it, do it with the family, teach your children it can be fun, make it your priority and you will fit in fitness! What tips do you have for fitting in fitness?