This could potentially be a controversial post.  Many people’s ideas of what is “healthy” vary so drastically, so bare with me.  The basic concept is this…  What habits we currently model for our children on a day to day basis in the areas of exercise, food and dietary choices, medicinal preferences, and even mental health (staying stimulated and not going stagnate) are imprinting in them habits and what they envision themselves doing when the grow up.  
Today I am going to tackle the topic of exercise, if you never exercise… then your children are most likely not going to envision themselves exercising as an adult…  this kind of legacy can be dangerous to their health as it is dangerous to ours.  Believe me this is a super convicting post- I am a work in progress- but especially in this area of my life.  Unfortunately, it took me “sacrificing” my health in the name of caring for my family (really, making an idol out of my family in a way), thinking they were more important than taking care of myself… and in my mind of course my children are, but if I don’t take care of myself, how can I take care of them.  This became a huge reality for me these past 2 pregnancies when I found myself on bed-rest.  I’m not saying that my being on bed-rest was all my fault, because I didn’t exercise, but I will say that I might not be struggling as much as I do with all the symptoms I have if I would have made exercise a priority vs an option. 

I think there is a problem among mother’s today… “A Motherhood Martyr Myth!”
Or maybe its just me, in which case this post is more of a confession. 
I used to think that I was a bad mom if I ever left my children, even to go to the doctor or to exercise.
I was constantly struggling in my mind because I already felt like I didn’t have enough hours in the day to get everything I needed to get done with my kids and home, let alone, taking off to exercise.  Then there is justifying paying someone to help take care of the precious ones while I exercise. 
It seemed like such a “waste” of money, which furthered my guilt.
 I am currently still in healing from this very oppressive thinking that you are the only one that should ever and only be with your children. 
I personally am a healthier mommy, when I am able to get a serious focused exercise break in a couple times every week. 

So what we have found works for our family is this…

2 days a week: I go to a gym that has a pool to do water therapy &/or strengthening exercises (weights)
I usually take Kelsey my oldest with me at least 1 day/week for her to learn how to use a gym and so we can have fun doing it together.  This has also been a real productive time for my spirit to be filled… with technology devices today, I have been fortunate enough to take advantage of listening to sermons and talks as well as worship… which feeds my soul and helps me be a better mom during the rest of the week.
Then 2-3 days per week the kids and I have an exercise program we go through in our little at home gym… I rotate kids on bike/tread climber/ tumbling mat with our musical instruments and Taebo for kids video.  It is fun!  Definitely productive and helps get the wiggles out of my boys. 
As for the other days of the week… the kids do swimming lessons 2 days per week and we have a small farm with lots of physical work!  :)

Every family’s convictions on this topic are so different, so please don’t think you need to do it all like us.  This is just what works for our family after much trial and error!


What does your family’s physical life look like?