04 August 2015

Thoughts on staying fit in your 40’s (and beyond) and living life on purpose.

Pool 11

It’s no secret Morgan and I started building our family a little later in life but that’s the way God planned it so I’ve never questioned it. And knowing that our Good Lord (as well as Zach’s birth mom) chose us to parent a newborn in our 40’s (and 50’s) gives us a great responsibility and privilege. As with anything, we know by saying yes to God, He’s the One who supplies us with the strength we need for the journey.

I’ve never been one to let something like age determine much in life. We’ve all known 30 year olds who believe and act like they’re old and 80 year olds who believe and act like they’re young. Age is relative. Especially when you know your days are numbered and Who holds them. It then, becomes a matter of how  we choose to live each day.

Despite the time I’ve got left here on earth, I want to live each day well, with purpose.

That leads me to staying fit as I grow older and being the best version of me I can be. For the last 10 years, I’ve been consistently exercising 3x’s a week. As I’ve mentioned before, I usually run. I don’t particularly like running (AT ALL!) but I get the most bang for my buck. I love doing yoga. Especially now, in my 40’s. If I had more time, I’d incorporate it more often. I always feel stronger and more able afterwards.

Although my typical routine is short (it has to be), it usually does the trick. My motto: As long as I’m dripping with sweat afterwards, I’ve accomplished my goal. Of course, I have all the normal insecurities of any woman but I try not to dwell too much on my size, weight, or looks. Especially in front of my kids. Instead, we try to encourage and educate our kids about staying healthy and making good choices.

Sometimes, I go through through phases where I like to challenge myself a bit more so I sign up for a 5K or agree to do 90 days of P90X with my husband. Remember that summer? I sure do!

Other than that, when weather permits, I love to get outdoors and do something fun with my family. Like go for a hike!

I also go through phases at night when I’m a total couch potato. Meaning I veg out on the couch, indulge in another glass of wine, and watch way too many episodes of Bizarre Foods or Diners, Drive-ins and Dives. Just keepin’ it real, ladies!

In fact, I’m coming off of one of those phases right now. Of course, there’s nothing wrong with vegging out on the couch, having a night cap, or watching TV but when it becomes a daily habit, that’s just not my idea of a productive evening. I remember going through a similar phase when the girls were little. It must have something to do with the fact that mama was just plain tired from taking care of littles all day. By the time they were in bed, all I wanted to do was chill out and do absolutely nothing!

Anyhow, as I said, I’m intentionally coming off that phase right now and I’ve been craving a new challenge! I usually run before 6:30 am but I never seem to get through a whole yoga session in the mornings without interruption. Maybe switching it up to nights would work better? Hey, at least it’s a start to getting me off the couch! :)

So, what’s my inspiration? First and foremost, it’s my kids.

The girls have always seen me make exercise a priority but now that I’m pushing 45 and I have a very active one year old, I feel like I have to step it up a notch. Zach is ALL BOY. He’s one strong little guy and he’s on the move! The bottom line-- I want to experience ALL of life with him. Lord willing, together, we still have mountains to climb, waves to ride, zip lines to traverse, underwater caves to explore, and many more exciting and fun adventures ahead of us. I don’t want any of my limitations to come between living life to the fullest and being actively involved in all those moments with any of my kids.

In other words, I don’t want to be a sideline mom. I want to be a fearless mom who paves the way by example and encouragement.

I’m also inspired by my mom and other women like her who just never give up. They don’t let age determine their ability. At 72, the first thing she does every morning is walk. She’s also been playing competitive ping pong DAILY for years. My mom is a TWO time cancer survivor so her body has been through some pretty harsh treatments and surgeries but each time she made it through, she changed her habits for the better. I love it that she feels better when she’s active, too. She’s a great example of trying your best, at any age. She doesn’t compare herself to anyone else.  She simply does what she can. 

Life is a balancing act, isn’t it? I’m most happy when I’m centered. For me, being centered means making time to take care of myself in all aspects of life: spiritually, emotionally, and physically. It’s a conscience choice we get to make, daily.

The goal is definitely not a size, or a number on the scale, or even the way I look. Gravity and age take no prisoners. The natural progression of aging on a body is merciless. However, as women, we can attempt to age with grace and embrace the years as a gift rather than a curse.

For me, I find myself adjusting my sails as I get older. I have to plot a new course, in order to keep moving forward. In many ways, if I’m not taking a step forward, I feel like it’s so easy to step backwards (not that stepping backwards is bad, sometimes it’s necessary). There’s definitely a delicate balance to growing intentionally as well as giving yourself some grace.

My goal: to fully ENJOY this life He’s given and entrusted to me. To be brave enough to LIVE it on purpose, for Him. To go the distance… to finish well and finish strong.

What’s your motivation to move forward and stay fit? Who or what inspires YOU?? I’d love to know!

Hailey said...

Awh! I loved hearing your heart speak. What an inspiration both you and Morgan are! Okay....so guess what I did for the first time?! Went down the water slide over and over again at Westin with my kids. It's like something in me snapped and didn't want to use my newborn as an excuse anymore! I've been in the baby stage too long to let the excuse continue! My elbows are all banged up, I had lots of wedgies and water up my nose....but my kids were thrilled and it didn't bother them one bit watching their chubby mom climb up and go down with them! Here's to more adventure!

Catherine said...

Hailey,
I AM SO PROUD OF YOU!! I know how thrilled your kids must have been! They will remember that day for a LONG time. You made the choice to say YES and God supplied you with courage. Good for you, mama! Now your kids won't let you off the hook anymore! ;)

Reminds me of a quote I read by Bear Grylls.

"Remember that life should NOT be a journey to the grave with the intention of arriving safely in an attractive and well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, covered in scars, body thoroughly used up, totally worn out and screaming,‘Yahoo! What a ride!’"

Can't wait to hear MORE about your adventures with your kids!:))

Yahoo!! Love you!!

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