Making time for fitness

I woke up today with a stiff back. For the only time in my life, other than when I was pregnant, I had back pain. I struggled to lift my baby out of her cot. I asked my husband to lift my toddler out of his. It was a wake-up call.

I’m not sure why my back ached. It might have been because I’ve not been going to pilates classes, or  because I’ve never really got back into yoga. It might have been because I rarely go running and spinning isn’t strengthening my core. It might have been because I’m lucky if I make it to the gym once a week. It might have been because I’ve not been making time for my body.

Things have got to change.

As I waited for my body to warm up this morning and my back to stop aching, I thought back to my 16-year-old self. I loved to run. I was a gym-junkie. I put exercise first. Always, and every day. In fact, I loved the way working out made me feel so much that I trained as a fitness instructor.

From the age of 16, I taught aerobics, spinning, boxercise, step, jazzercise, body conditioning, body pump, aqua aerobics – the lot. I loved every class. I freelanced and taught regularly at health clubs across North London, building up a solid following and continuously expanding the range of classes I could teach.

Once I graduated, things changed. I left the UK and, via Asia, settled in New Zealand. Life got in the way. Work definitely got in the way. As I worked my way up to sitting on the news desk of a national newspaper, there seemed to be little time for the gym – especially when there was the option of work drinks or drinks with contacts promising scoops.

I kept up a little activity – I completed a women’s triathlon and at one point ran a 10k in 59 minutes. I had always loved yoga (practising often throughout university), and I still did a little of this – I practised 3-5 times a week before the birth of my son, even getting to a hatha class the night before I was admitted to hospital.

But then I had two babies 18 months apart and everything stopped.

And now I’ve realised, I’ve been away from exercise for too long. I miss it. I miss my fitness.

I have a gym membership at a club I love but don’t get to enough. I have beautiful parks on my doorstep. I have trainers. I have a yoga mat. My baby goes to bed at 7pm and the kids (at the moment) sleep through. Yes, I get my freelance writing work done in the evening. Yes, I have a novel which I work on at night. But, there have to be enough hours in the day for fitness as well. The excuses stop here.

This isn’t about losing weight or getting off the couch. I’m already active with the kids. I’m already a healthy weight. It’s about becoming stronger and fitter and making time for exercise – because I know how good it makes me feel, and I know how good it is for me.

By writing this post, I’m committing to spending 30 minutes a day being active. I know 30 minutes is nothing – I run around for hours with the kids. But it’s 30 minutes without the kids, of just me, making time for fitness.

Wish me luck, and feel free to join me. There is, after all, strength in numbers.

*If you’re keen to join in, let me know – let’s do this together… tweet me, facebook me, instagram me – #fitforme

yoga #fitforme



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24 Thoughts on “Making time for fitness

  1. Ah I’m so with you on this! I used to be so active too – trampolining was my main thing, and I coached it all through uni (in N London too funnily enough…). Now that Leigh’s on holiday for the summer I’m determined to get fit again. I’m starting with yoga, and hopefully some reformer Pilates – 30 mins a day sounds like a good plan :) xx

    • Yay! I’m so glad I’m not alone on wanting to do this, especially after being so active and coaching like you. Good luck this summer. I’ve started with yoga too, and had a great practise this evening! As I expected, it felt brilliant! x

  2. mummydaddyme on June 25, 2014 at 10:08 pm said:

    Good luck Kiran. I have been trying to get fitter since January, and although I occadionally have bad weeks where I can’t be bothered to exercise (like this week!) I have really surprised myself with how I have kept to it!

    • Katie your running journey has been an inspiration to me! I meant to tell you that at Britmums but I didn’t get a chance. Thanks for the good luck wishes – I will keep you posted and hopefully be as good at sticking to this as you have been! x

  3. Feeling unfit and achy here too. 30 minutes is a great start-I’m in!

  4. I’m so with you Kiran. My body is not loving me right now at all! I feel stiff and very unfit- I don’t want to feel like an old lady at 30. I’ve started running a bit the last few weeks, but need to add in some yoga or stretching too. It’s funny, but I’ve read a few posts lately about people wanting to get fit and feel better, so it’s obviously an area close to people’s hearts. Let’s do this!

  5. Just up, feeling achey and read this post. It’s so true and another example of not prioritising time for me. But today I might just slip on the trainers and make an effort. At the end of the day it’s me that benefits. Thanks

  6. I’m in lovely! Could have written most of this post myself, i’m desperate to get my fitness back xx

  7. Good luck Kiran! I’ve been writing a post about fitness too. Last year I started doing some exercise and lost quite a bit of weight and for the first time in years actually felt good in my clothes and it really helped with my confidence. Then over winter I got a bit cosy and lazy and didn’t do much and put a few pounds back on. I’ve recently started doing some again and I really want to start going to a yoga class and want to try running too. I think it is so hard once we have children to force yourself to do some exercise at the end of a long day, but it really does make you feel better. I love all the fitness posts around at the moment, they are really inspiring me. Great post; hope it goes well for you x

  8. Best of luck. I admire all women who make time for fitness, as it’s so blimin hard! I was a runner but now with a four-month-old I can’t run up the stairs let alone a half marathon! My body is creaking and groaning to do something but it’s hard with a baby pinned to me pretty much all the time and cronic sleep deprivation. As soon as I start ‘rushing about’ I get mastitis, so I’ve resigned myself to doing nothing until my body is ready. x

  9. I’ve been making a conscious effort to work out hard for half an hour at least four times a week in the past couple of months. It’s made me realise that the times where I struggled to fit in even one workout on a “good” week the struggle wasn’t with finding time, it was getting past my excuses. I’d like to join in!

  10. Caroline (Becoming a SAHM) on June 26, 2014 at 12:51 pm said:

    Good for you, sometimes you have to stop and think about yourself and what you want, it’s so easy to forget that when you have kids! I’d love to join but may have to wait until after baba is born for me now, though I did start an aquanatal class last night! Not sure that counts though ;) xx #brilliantblogposts

  11. kiddyreviews on June 26, 2014 at 3:07 pm said:

    Yes, totally agree with you! I’m feeling like a stiff, old woman at only 30. I keep meaning to be as active as I once was, but life (baby!) keeps getting in the way. I know I need to commit myself more. Hopefully your #fitforme will get me bum in gear too!

  12. I want to join you but even 30 minutes a day seems hard, especially at the weekend. I love your enthusiasm though and wish you all the best, health is so important.

  13. One Wednesday night my heart hurts like hell. Its a stabbing pain. This is the first time in my life that I felt such pain. I dont have reason but lack of movement and exercise. Like you before I got married I am active doing boxing aero. Now my only activity is walking to & from school which is not enough. I wish I can do more. For my son so that i can see him grow. #brilliantblogposts

  14. Pingback: My Goals for #getgoodsummer #getgood2014 | Mummy Tries

  15. Fab. I found running this year and I am now addicted. I love how fit it is making me feel and I also love the me time it gives me.

  16. Oh the same thing happened to me…… Before my baby came along I did yoga, tai chi, swam, ran, cycled everywhere; I was such a lean mean fit machine. But then it all stopped. And then towards the end of last year I decided that enough was enough and unfurled my yoga mat for the first time in years. I now try to do some yoga every day, even if it’s only five down ward dogs! X

  17. Wow so impressed you were a gym instructor at 16 and yes I agree that spending even a small amount of time a day to fitness (alone) makes a world of difference. I’ve found 40 minutes of yoga a day which started at 10 has given me more energy than ever and body sculpting aside has changed me inside and out. I love a good run too and find early evenings when the kids are asleep the best time to just do it (as Nike would say)-love your hashtag and I’m in. Thanks for linking up to #brilliantblogposts

  18. P.S Love this post and how you write, good luck with the novel, can’t wait to hear more x

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