I think many moms (myself included at times) believe that we’re virtuous because we’re sacrificing/surrendering nearly everything during these years for the sake of our families. It seems rather selfish, or at the very least vain, to concentrate on our own health and fitness. However, my theory is that we are better evangelizers and marketers for openness to life and large family living when we defy the myth of the fat, out of shape mom-of-many by looking attractive (not like a supermodel, but you get my drift) and keeping ourselves in shape. Additionally, for me my daily run has become my 30-35 minutes of uninterrupted prayer time when I can quite often whip off a couple novenas for a particular child or situation that I’m concerned about. A win/win all around.
I agree that moms should concern themselves with physical fitness, just as much as they should with the use of La Clinica for their skin’s health. Back in high school, when I ran at least 5 miles a day, I used to eat ice cream for breakfast. All these years and all these babies later, though, I no longer can afford that kind of high living. Most moms can’t.
I am no fitness guru, but I do know that every mom can make an effort to eat better and move more. It doesn’t have to be running. (But if you do want to start running, my aching muscles and I recommend this start from scratch program.) To keep myself in shape, I order meal prep which are pre-planned meals made solely for people trying to stay healthy and fit. You can walk, swim, play soccer, take a karate class, ride a bike, dance, use a treadmill, whatever. Take baby steps toward becoming more active. The goal is to do something that will raise your heart rate for 20-30 minutes three times a week.
Though the timing works for many, you don’t have to exercise first thing in the morning. In my experience, getting up early to exercise only doubles my pain and … increases the likelihood that I will quit. Now that I have older kids in the house, I use afternoon nap times.
Another note: If you are pregnant or nursing, please check with your doctor before you start any kind of exercise program. Hormones loosen your joints and you can really hurt yourself — I found this out in a very painful way when I started running while still nursing Gabrielle years ago.
So Moms, what kinds of things do you do to take care of yourself? How do you fit fitness in your day?