Sometimes its not about what you do to keep active its about who its with. We all have something that motivates us to workout and keep Active (see ‘Why be an Active Dad‘), but sometimes that’s not enough.
We need someone to keep us accountable, not just to be active every day, but to give it 100% each time. That’s where its important to choose your workout partners carefully.
Being a day off from work, my son was down for a nap and my wife was at home, it was a perfect time to get my daily dose of sweat. While it wasn’t planned, when I got to the gym there was two other guys there I know, who both happen to be Dads. We were all there for the same reason so we worked out together.
It was a hour of High Intensity training, pushing each other to lift heavier weights and get more out of the workout.
What I Learnt from it
One thing I’ve learnt about working out is it is a great stress reliever. Whether its stress from Work, Home, or anything else. Pushing yourself hard will take your mind off it.
Working out with other Dads gave us the opportunity to talk about being a dad and the different challenges we were going through. Hearing their challenges and realising that they were still able to find an hour most days to get away puts it all in perspective. If they can do it, anyone can.
Choosing your Workout Partner
Everyone has their own routine when it comes to being active and working out. Some will only go it Solo, Some need motivation that you can only get from a personal trainer, others prefer to do it as a group. Find what works for you.
As a Dad I suggest finding other Dad’s to workout with. There are a number of benefits in doing so. Firstly you will have someone to push you harder and really get 100% from every workout. Secondly there lives are going to be somewhat similar to yours, they will understand when you pull out at the last minute due to your family, they will understand if finding free time is challenging. Finally it will give you an opportunity to talk Dad Stuff to other Dads.
Why do I workout? Why spend some of your free time at the gym? Why spend your hand earned money on a membership? Why get up early everyday instead of sleeping in? Why push your body so it’s sore the next day? Why Workout?
These are all questions everyone has asked themselves in some form or another. Whether you don’t workout at all or whether you go for a run everyday, you have asked yourself these questions. So Why do we do it? that answer is different for everyone, everyone has their own ‘Why?’. It’s what drives them to allocate a part of their day to pushing themselves to the limit.
My Why has definitely evolved over the years, but since becoming a Dad I feel like its stronger then ever. I’m not saying I don’t go through ‘off’ stages
So Why do I Workout?
Simply put, So I can keep up with my kids. My kid is very active and I don’t see it slowing down anytime soon. As he gets older chasing him around is going to require more effort on my behalf. I Don’t want to be exhausted every time he wants to play backyard footy. Not only that I want to actually be able to do these kinds of activities with him. I Don’t want to be stuck on the lounge because I’m too tired, I want to continue to live my life without needing support in day to day activities because I can’t lift objects I used to be able to.
So What Works for Me?
The best part of my why is that its not so much about me but about my family. Its a life-long challenge that will require ongoing commitment, which sounds scary but 1 or 2 weeks missed here and there isn’t going to impact it overall. In fact its good to give your body a break every so often.
I try to participate in some form of High Intensity activity multiple times a week along with strength work on all muscle groups. Push myself to the point I’m huffing and puffing and sweat is rolling off me to build and maintain healthy lung capacity. Utilise Whole Body strength movements which we use in day to day activity such as squats and deadlifts to work all muscles in my body
Benefits of Being an Active Dad
All you have to do is a quick google search to find a wealth of information about the benefits of working out regularly. Do these all apply to being a Dad, probably not but there are still plenty of good reasons to stay active such as
- Less Likely to be worn out chasing your kids. This starts from as soon as they can walk. As they grow older they will become more active and wouldn’t you rather be the Dad that can keep up with them rather then being worn out on the sideline?
- More chance of living a longer and healthier life. Its not just about living to old age anymore. Don’t you want to see your kids grow up, live their lives, maybe have grandchildren one day? I know when I get older I don’t want to be someone who becomes a burden on their family because they can’t look after themselves.
- Being proud of your Dad Bod. Everyone has a different idea of what the ideal ‘DadBod’ looks like. The fact is if your a Dad and you have a body, you have a DadBod. Wouldn’t you rather be comfortable and happy in your body then ashamed?
Whether your a parent or not, living an active lifestyle will do wonders for your health and well-being, its just up to you to commit to it. Find out what works for you and maintain it. Most Importantly find your Why