I love how a New Year brings so much hope.
I’m all tucked up in bed when hubby messages me an interesting article. No, he’s not away from home or up late watching TV or returning from a night out. He’s tucked up also – downstairs. We’ve gone all Blondie and Dagwood in pursuit of a better night’s sleep which, he assures me, is more certain if he retires to what I’m now calling the ‘den’. I wouldn’t be surprised if he’s cheating on our broadband provider down there and gotten himself hooked up to Netflix on a New Year’s deal – such is his apparent joy at his sleeping alternative. However, he reminds me, I don’t have an angry 2-year-old seeking me out at all hours of the night, livid she fell asleep without him in her own bed. He assures me a good night’s rest is to the benefit of the entire family, but this arrangement makes me huffy. Is nothing sacred in our now child-filled life? I miss him – and overall, he could be less joyous.
I’m making the most of it and wearing my Cork socks up to my knees and blogging.
As a preamble to the articles, I had resolved (loosely) to get more exercise in this year. I have a million reasons not to get moving like I used to. Because I’ve always loved walking at the very least – and for prolonged amounts of time have run, done yoga, taken exercise classes, played sports etc. But right now, I’m just finding it impossible to get any reasonable level of activity in. At all. There’s the almost 5-month-old baby, there’s the 2-year-old who refuses to get in a buggy, there’s less daylight, wind, rain – you name it. But my body is crying out for it. And if a New Year doesn’t push you over the line, well, what will?
I had also been slightly seduced by the steady on-slaught of advertising for snazzy fitness tracker-watch-gadget-thingys in the run up to Christmas. But turns out my phone has an app that should cover me. Who knew? Super!
Anyway, I’ve been tracking and I haven’t liked what I’ve seen (with the exception of my water-intake levels, which I’ve been working on. My kidneys have never felt so loved). Everybody’s supposed to be taking 10,000 steps per day folks. Minimum. I felt with my always-on-the-go role at home I’d be breaking records for steps taken. Oh the naivety. Turns out I’m averaging 3,000 odd. And that’s including the supermarket shop, complete with enforced far-away parking.
I am a veritable sloth and this is not good.
At one stage, having taken at least fifty minutes to change two nappies, pack the obligatory bag of snacks ‘n stuff and wrestle three into car seats, my app was telling me I’d only been active for about 19% of the hour. Bath time provoked barely a blip and last night it recorded my having slept for 9 hours and 22 minutes. And I think we all know that’s not happening. So, I’m aware it has it’s drawbacks – and yet I know it’ll be the stick needed to beat me out the door. It’s more than the extreme satisfaction of seeing those steps clock up. It’s a deep-seeded vanity I have. I see myself as an active, relatively fit person – basically me seven years ago. And I want this app to think the same. Needy much? We started off on the wrong foot, but I am determined to show this tracker I’m a good stepping, A+ kinda gal. I can’t help myself.
Back to the articles. The first covered the importance of being active, how modern life is making us ever-more sedentary and this is slowly killing us. The second looked at the crucial regenerative properties of sleep and how chronic, globe-wide sleep deprivation is, as above, also slowly killing us. Not reading for the faint-hearted, you might say, but thought provoking all the same.
I find it so easy to come up with excuses as to why I don’t manage to fit in a walk or a run. If I have an hour to myself I’ll usually spend it faffing around the house and rather than hit the hay when I can, I lounge around in order to enjoy some ‘me’ time – often passed catching up on Instagram, What’s App or The Kardashians. So much of my time is already not my own and out of my control – plans get thrown up and sleep gets interrupted all the time. But the time I do have, I want to use that little bit better.
So, my basic plan for 2019 – six days in anyway – is to give it all a bit ‘more’. More steps, more water, more sleep. Hubby’s already chipping in on the sleep front and, if I can stick with it at all, I think that it will all mean a little more for me – more energy, more vitality, more wellness. I’ll admit I can be quite deluded sometimes (you’ll have seen there was a 400% deficit in terms of my perceived and actual daily stepping activity), but I genuinely don’t think I’m aiming too high. And that can only be the most practical way of approaching any New Year bandwagon.
If you’re interested to read the articles, you’ll find them as follows: