I am the only girl in my family and grew up with 3 older brothers, so sport was a big part of our weekends. We were a very active family - Mum would have to shuffle between all the kids’ games because Dad was at work, but he’d catch the odd game. Growing up I played netball, basketball and did rowing. I was also a junior rep at cricket and badminton in my youth.
Once I finished high school, my physical activity levels dropped. I went through a period where I worked and went out in the weekends so I didn’t play sport. As I’ve gotten older, I’ve become fitter and more conscious of the benefits of being physically active. I’m more aware of healthy choices and that it doesn’t have to cost money to keep fit. Currently, I play netball and I also like to run– I have completed a half marathon, and am keen to eventually do another.
Although I enjoy being physically active, time can be a barrier to me getting out there and moving as much as I would like. I work and study so it can be hard to find the time to fit sport and exercise into my life. And when I do find the time, the motivation to get off my butt can waver after a long day working or studying. I’ve found that trying to be organized helps, as does not being too hard on myself when I can’t fit things in. For example, my running is done when I have time but some days I don’t get up to anything and instead I have a day where I just relax. I think it’s important to adopt this attitude to physical activity. We all know that life can get in the way, so sometimes you just have to embrace it – otherwise you stress yourself out trying to do too much and end up burning out.
I choose to get out there and active to keep fit and healthy and be happy. I get a bit moody if I sit around too much. I’m the type of person who needs to keep doing things to feel energized. Being physically active makes me feel happy and fulfilled, getting to sleep at the end of the day is also easier and I normally have restful sleep if I’ve done some physical activity during the day. I often find that the best way to get active is to get some mates together and do something fun with them that raises the heart rate. There’s so many options these day - backyard cricket, throwing frisbees at the beach – it doesn’t have to be expensive. 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.
My future physical activity goals include maintaining, if not improving my fitness. I’m thinking of doing another half marathon in 2018, so that will be a goal for me in the future when I choose to commit to it, but in the meantime, over summer, I intend to just have fun getting a sweat up a couple of times a week – achieving that I’ll be happy. You don’t have to do much, you’ve just got to be consistent and build from there.
"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"
"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"
"I like getting fit, competing and winning medals. I like to have big strong muscles"
"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”
"Just by putting your shoes on and getting out there, you’re being active and doing great things for your wellbeing."
"There’s so much reward to be had by overcoming fear and achieving things you never thought you could – so go for it – and link up with other likeminded women along the way."
"Exercise makes me feel incredible! It makes me feel strong capable and grounded."
"...there is more to life than the aesthetic of your body."
"I am so damn proud of what my body and brain can do for me. It brings me so much joy."
"Feeling confident in my own skin, being stronger and fitter than when I was younger."