As a teenager, I only ever played sport if it meant that I could hang around the guy I had a crush on at the time. I forced myself to endure the sweat, the uncoordinated jumble of limbs, and inevitable headache that I would get at the end of the day.
For most of my life (I said MOST - not all - cue photos of me in Belgium and travelling Europe - and thank goodness I had to ride a bike everywhere I went in Belgium, or goodness knows what could have happened!) I have been genetically blessed enough to not need to do REAL exercise to stay relatively in shape. And I know, this will come back to haunt me!
As a teenager I once joined a gym briefly. I had delusions about wanting to stay fit and get healthy, but ultimately spent more time in the sauna than actually doing cardio. My brother and I started playing tennis as children, and Jackson ultimately became much better at it than I did. I got sick of losing pretty quickly, and the novelty soon wore off.
In my early 20s I was a regular in clubs around Brisbane. The constant dancing and lack of sensible eating did wonders for my waistline. This, however, was unsustainable. One can only live this way until they have children.
When I eventually had my own children, I was so sick during all of the pregnancies, that I came out of hospital each time weighing less than I had weighed when I first discovered I was pregnant. Of course the weight sat differently on me, but I was still not unhappy with how I looked. I had had children, and my body reflected that in many ways, but I was still comfortable with my body. (Perhaps that comes with age).
Over the next few years, I felt that I needed to do something to start 'getting fit'. This wasn't about losing weight. It was about looking and feeling good, and taking control of my lifestyle again. I couldn't bring myself to walk though. Because of where we live, I felt that it was either too hot, or too cold, or that maybe there would be a brown snake on the road, or a bull, who would possibly try to run me down! In any event, I never really did go walking. You could count on one hand the number of times I did. And then I used my kids as an excuse.
"Oh, I can't go walking. Who will look after my kids? I can't leave them at home...etc etc."
I conned my next door neighbour into driving over so that we could walk together, but again, the children got in the way, slowed us down or just made it plain unbearable. It was fun, exercising with another adult, but short lived. My neighbour and I often talked about starting bike riding. The roads out here are rough, but we had theorised that a brisk cycle on a bike, where we would rendezvous half way between her place and mine, would be great. But alas, that never happened either.
More recently, I did start riding a bike. I decided to talk hubby into buying me a good mountain bike so that it could handle the roads. He decided that I should borrow his mother's old reliable one, and see if I would use that as a means to gauge how much use it would actually get, before he went and spent money on a new one. His lack of faith in me was unsettling, but legitimate. I did that a few times before I gave up that idea too. I had decided that I was more of an 'inside exercise' sort of person.
I have amassed quite a collection of free Yoga and Zumba DVDs (mostly taken from Courier Mail Newspaper Giveaways). Maybe these were the exercises I needed to start considering? But after a month or so of mostly looking at their covers, I put them back in a safe place as well. Perhaps time was the problem with me? Or lack thereof... I have even tried Wii Fit and Wii Dance - both of which I love. The kids can also join in on this too, and we have had quite a bit of fun with this on and off over the years (Admittedly more off than on though). Our Wii now sits mostly unused in a container under the television now too. See a pattern here?
Exercise bikes, treadmills and whatever else you can buy off morning television shows were not for me. Our house isn't particularly huge, and storage is a problem. I learned this after buying an Ab King Pro (which I thought was the answer to all my problems), which now sits unused out in our shed.
We even put in a pool to give me an excuse to exercise. It has totally paid for itself, in that all three of my children have learned to swim in it, but my pool use is mostly limited to kicking back on an inflatable with a cool beverage in hand.
Yes, I look at pictures of Sonia Kruger and have leg and arm envy.In fact, I blame Sonia Kruger for my new found obsession with wanting to like, nay LOVE, exercise. I want to be almost 50 and looking hot to trot. I mean, look at those arms and legs?!
|Actually, I know this will never be me, but she has still inspired me... almost 50 and HOT!|
My mother and sister are both exercise fanatics. They sacrifice sleep for exercise, and that is how I know I am still not ready to fully commit to a new regime of exercise in my life.
Mum even has a special app on her phone that plots her track, times her and helps her challenge herself to improve on times etc with every future run/walk. I also downloaded a Nike Training app for my phone. It's AMAZING. I thought I would start with the beginners half hour cardio session. 10 minutes in I had to stop for a break. Don't worry, I feel bad enough about it myself. I'm not going to give up entirely. This whole 'me exercising' thing will happen. I just need to stop making excuses, and start making time. The benefits will speak for themselves. I am not unhappy with how I look. I have just reached an age where I need to start getting serious about how I treat my body. Things aren't springing back the way they used to, and I'm not getting any younger. And I will never achieve results like those above, by just sitting here and writing about it...