One of the trickiest things about moving cities recently – we uprooted everything to shift our lives 40 miles down the M1 to London – has been the difference in physical activity.
Don’t get me wrong, I’m not idle or lazy, but give me the choice of a sofa and a blanket or a brisk walk in the winter cold, I’d take the soft option any time. I just love my comforts – and to be warm. And non-sweaty. Which is why the two-mile London school run each and every day, and though it’s strictly a walk we do have to step up the pace every so often and break into that ‘run’, has been a bit of a shock to the system. Yes, I’m reaching my steps target literally every single day, but I have never in my life moved this much. And, I have to be honest, it’s not my favourite thing ever.
Which makes it funny that, in this respect, my mum differs so much from me here. She may have 28 years on me but by god does she like to move. And she has done ever since she had open-heart surgery after a life-threatening heart condition (a cardiac myxoma: they covered this once on Grey’s Anatomy so you know it’s a good one). At the age of 62 – as far away from live-in care as you can get, she runs at least three times a week, including a regular park run each and every weekend.
I’m tired just thinking about it. I mean, I thought one of the benefits of getting older was having a legitimate excuse to slow down again – spending your retirement baking, taking long baths (is it weird I’ve already picked my future walk-in bath?) and drinking gin at lunchtime. Maybe all at once?!
I wonder if the movement and exercise gene is a recessive one, skipping a generation, because Elfie is well and truly into her sports, particularly running. She’ll take any chance to strap on her trainers and go for a run around the field, and she’s very good at it, too. Pre-house move she’d be out with her grannie, pounding the course at our local Park Run, and now we’re in London she’s her new schools’ most enthusiastic athletics member.
Again, I’m tired just thinking about it. Go, Elfie! I’ll be having a lie-down while you run literal circles around me.
I’m sighing, thinking about it. I should really be the one setting the fitness example for my 9-year-old, shouldn’t I, not the other way around?
I do like the odd yoga session and, at the old house, I would happily attend our local David Lloyd for a HIIT class or two. And at the age of 34 I’m certainly not getting any younger and could do with more than my two-mile daily school run to get the old blood pumping.
But for now, the lure of the snuggly jumpers, the blankets and the sofa… it’s just too much. Maybe next summer I’ll find my fitness mojo with mum and Elfie?
Huge thanks to Bathing Solutions, who worked with More Than Toast on this collaborative post.