A mother’s life is busy, irrespective of whether you have a job or stay-at-home; whether you have a newborn that needs constant looking after or a 6-year old that demands to be transported to school, extra-classes and play dates; whether you have a single child or a tribe. Having a hot cup of tea or 5 minutes of solitude in the loo is a luxury when it comes to our routines.
How (then) do we inculcate exercise in our lives? Well, to be honest, I’m going to leave that for YOU to figure out. We’re all adults who are aware (hopefully) of its benefits. However, what I will tell you, is why exercising when you have children is one of the best things you can do for yourself and them.
In an attempt to tone down the preachy, let’s make this discussion argumentative.
My take: I don’t know about you, but over the years I’ve seen my stamina dwindling. Earlier, I could accomplish 10 things at a time with reasonable ease; attempting to do that now gives me a migraine. And it’s normal. It’s ageing. While we would rather not talk about it, it is happening and the only way to keep going is to focus on your wellbeing. When nothing else works, ask yourself this question: now that you finally have children, don’t you want to be around for them?
Yours: It’s funny how exercise helps you live longer because whenever I exercise, it makes me feel like I’m dying!
My take: We all want our kids to be active, don’t we? That is exactly why we enroll them for soccer AND swimming AND dance AND tennis and whatever else we can afford. Unfortunately, that is never enough. If you want your kid(s) to be active, you need to be active yourself. If they see you slouching on the couch watching TV instead, that is what they are likely to do too.
Yours: Chasing toddlers is my cardio.
My take: Taking time out for exercise from an otherwise packed schedule is a matter of priority. If it’s important to you, you will find the means to do it. There are all kinds of wants and needs; but it all comes down to recognizing consequences and making the right choice. This, in itself is a great life lesson for our kids who are watching us every minute of every day.
Yours: I LOVE EXERCISE. Just not as much as I love wine, or my friends or a combination of both. Never mind!
My take: Stress and motherhood go hand in hand giving us all the more reason to indulge in some serious feel-good, endorphin-releasing work outs. Exercise is a great way to feel light and happy and an overall better version of you.
Yours: It’s astounding how much one’s stress levels go down with the simple act of switching from yoga pants to pj’s.
My argument: If you want to look good, try exercise. It’s cheaper than a blow dry!
I’m tired. It’s too cold. It’s too hot. It’s too late. Let’s go.