I was encouraged from a young age to play a sport and netball was an easy choice! I also danced right through my schooling and feel this was a great chance to learn discipline and see hard work pay off. I have dabbled in many other codes and love giving any sport a go! Pushing yourself out of your comfort zone and trying something new every now and then is great for the mind (and body!)
Like a lot of young people do, I went through a bit of a physical activity slump in my second year of University and one of the results of that was that I wasn't sleeping well at all. My Dad reminded me about taking care of myself and getting in some activity. Sure enough, some runs up Baldwin Street in Dunedin soon whipped me back into shape, and ever since then I’ve been sure of the importance of getting even some physical activity in your day.
Currently I am into gymming and am loving group fitness classes mixed in with my own training either at the gym or outside. I try to get in at least 45 minutes of cardio a day and then some resistance and weights training at least 4x a week. I love turning up to the gym and being motivated by others. I am very, very competitive and enjoy pushing myself to keep up with some of the other familiar faces I see in my regular classes.
I love the way I feel after a sweaty session! Weekend walks with my partner are also a great sweat out and chance to catch up with no technology. My mood is definitely a bit flat when I get busy with work or life gets out of balance and I can’t be as active as I would like to be. Getting moving can improve an average day or situation and gives you the chance to just switch off from everything and do something for you. It gives you full mind, body and soul time to just reflect and take a moment for yourself. I feel strong and proud of myself after a work out. I think I feel empowered to tackle tricky situations a lot better.
I love being active with my girlfriends or family or friends too as you can take a traditional sedentary catch up in a cafe and instead grab a coffee to go (in your keep cup!) and walk around the lake or along the waterfront. You get all the perks and endorphins from the walk and a good yarn as well. Equally, because I work in the public sector, I feel it is important to be a positive role model to those I interact with and being able to walk the talk but also feel great when you are active is worth its weight in gold!
I travel A LOT for work, which means I often need to be creative with my workouts and try not to beat myself up about not getting to the gym or going out for a run or walk. It’s important to realise that it can be as simple as a quick walk around the block for 20 minutes followed by a bit of a resistance/body weight exercise session in your hotel room to make you feel 100x better!
Getting your partner involved to help out with chores and dinner prep in the evening so you can get your exercise in is also something I’ve found helpful - being a team at home so you can get out and pound the pavement or take some time to stretch whilst they tidy up after dinner definitely helps.
My advice, bust those barriers by being organised the night before if you do your physical activity in the morning and get out of bed when that alarm goes off. It might not feel good at that hour of the morning but trust me, your energy levels will be much better, you will have a wee hop in your step and your attitude is going to be 100x better on your day ahead. Start out with small steps and milestones like walking around the block without stopping; going to that first group fitness class or jumping in the water for the first time in 10 years or so. Whatever it takes, share your little milestones you want to achieve with your loved ones and get them to keep you accountable.
"Going to the gym and being physically active makes me feel alive and motivated"
"The rush you get from being active, and achieving your physical goals, is unmeasurable"
Catarina"I love the feeling when you're all sweaty, tired and out of breath because you know you've tried your best and pushed yourself as far as you could"Read Story
Courtney"I like getting fit, competing and winning medals. I like to have big strong muscles"Read Story
"So often as a mum you are doing things for other people, so being physically active makes me feel good in that I’m doing something positive for myself"
"I enjoy the social aspect of being physically active, when it’s not too serious and it’s just about learning new skills or getting out of the house and having fun"
“I don't like sitting around and being bored. I love participating in team sport and putting goals in place to achieve.”
“Never give up, keep pushing even when times are hard, and love yourself. Find your passion and grow because your only competition is yourself”
“Being active is important to me. I want to live a healthy life and movement is a big part of that”
"For me, sport and physical activity has offered me opportunities to make friends for life and memories I will never forget"
"I’m now convinced that I am not in competition with anyone and it doesn’t matter what anyone else thinks anyway. I know I’m never going to win races but as long as I am trying my best to be a better me than I was yesterday then I am winning at life"
"Not being the one sitting on the sidelines watching and being able to role model how to stay healthy and fit to my children so that they grow up believing being active is a part of everyday life and sharing all these wonderful adventures with them, it makes my heart sing"
“Quite often when you can’t be bothered or you’re feeling sluggish and tired you can surprise yourself on how well you’ll do. Just get out the door, breathe in some fresh air and take some time for YOU, because you deserve to be HAPPY and HEALTHY!”
“Start out with small steps and milestones like walking around the block without stopping, going to that first group fitness class or jumping in the water for the first time in 10 years or so”
“I feel a lot happier when I'm active. A run or a swim will always clear my head”
“You have got to have a positive attitude and just get out there. Keep moving, stay focused, because life is way too short to waste your time not doing what you love to do. Just do it”
“By valuing ME more, I started to recognise myself and all of my qualities. Now I’m proud of who I am”
“I find I am generally a better human being and can give more when I keep active”
“Being active amazes me at what my body can achieve, after all I have put it through. It amazes me how it can heal”
"Find something that you enjoy doing and make the time to do it. You’re not being selfish; you’re looking after yourself. The best time to start is today"
“Running and working out are my antidote to the everyday stresses of life. When I’m not active I find it harder to switch off and view things in perspective. Sweating through activity means I don’t sweat the small things in life”
“Being active makes me feel like I’m using my body for good. It makes me feel powerful, positive, sweaty, glorious, achy in a good way, and hopeful for the future”
“Running is an outlet for me and I feel as though I am in control when it’s just me and my running shoes”
“I was proud that I was determined enough to start from scratch and have had lots of fun playing in local competitions”
"I didn’t want to be the parent that only ever watched my kids run around and kick a ball – I wanted to be a part of what they were doing"
“Happy is a very well-known word but yet can be described in many ways. To me happy means doing the things you love while not being forced to do them. Sport and keeping physically active are my happy place”
“Overall regular physical activity makes me more positive and happier”
“I feel alive and ready for anything”
“Active, healthy lifestyles aren’t defined by how often you run or go to the gym. Exercise can look like what you want it to be and what fits into your life”