When I wrote a recent post about my (re)discovery that fitness is important to my marriage, I never realized the pivotal role that it would play in my life. I’ll be sharing much more on that front over the next few weeks, but today I’d like to share a bit more about my thoughts on the relationship between physical wellness and a happy married life.
More importantly, I really want to create a dialogue with and between the awesome members of our community in the comments to this post. If you are reading this via an RSS Reader, please do me a favor and come over to the site so you can engage in this conversation.
I want to ask a few questions and then give you my thoughts on each. In the comments, please share your perspective on this super-important topic.
Obviously, my answer here is Yes! based on my last post and posts from the early days of the site where I made the case for Getting Fit and Having a Healthy Marriage.
Recently, I’ve become even more enthusiastic, and I think that’s because my mindset has changed. Instead of viewing exercise as a self-centered activity to simply look good or feel good about myself, I’ve really started looking at it as a service to Bethany and my children. Not only is my self-confidence improved, but so are my moods, health, enthusiasm and energy.
I am a better husband and father when I am fit (or working towards a state of better fitness).
For the last few months, I can certainly say that my workouts have been consistent. My history with exercise has been one of up-and-downs and starts-and-stops. My weight has fluctuated 40 pounds several times since college along with my overall wellness.
I honestly think I’ve gotten beyond that with the help of a realistic and effective training program as well as some great accountability partners. I am a regular exerciser now.
Sort of. Lately, this hasn’t been much of an option for us as Bethany is currently 9 1/2 months pregnant. However, I’d definitely like to exercise with her as much as possible after the new baby gets here and everything settles down.
Some of my best memories of our dating years (and pre-kid years) include tennis matches, shooting baskets and taking long walks and bike rides. We’ve allowed life to get in the way of this form of physical connectedness, and I do miss it.
The program I’m following now would definitely allow us to workout together at home as long as we could find a time when the kids are asleep (or they could join us). This could be an issue with a newborn! If we can’t exercise together, then we’ll be sure to allow each other a little time to workout individually, and hopefully we’ll be able to do so together from time-t0-time.
This one’s easy: TIME!
One of the main reasons my previous fitness programs have stalled is that they weren’t sustainable for the long haul. For example, P90X requires an hour to an hour-and-a-half workouts six days per week. This sounds doable and does get results, but how long would your lifestyle allow you to maintain this before you get derailed or simply rundown?
Also, it is just so easy to get sidetracked during the course of a busy day and miss a workout. When this happens, one day turns into two, then three and then I say “might as well restart at lunchtime on Monday.” Except Monday brings a lunch meeting and the whole plan goes down the tubes. Hey Gym, see in you six months when New Year’s Day rolls around!
My current program allows me to workout at home and it takes less than 30 minutes a day, five days per week (and two of those days let me get outside when the weather permits, which is awesome). So, in the time it used to take me to drive to the gym and back, I can knock out a great workout in the morning before work.
This works great for me because all of the distractions of the day can’t get in the way!
I am really interested to hear what you have to say about the role of exercise and fitness in your marriage. I thought about doing a survey on this topic, but I’d much rather have an open dialogue and get your honest perspective.
If you’re going to comment on one post this year, I’d really like it if you chose this one. Thanks!
Dustin Riechmann created Engaged Marriage to help other married couples live a life they love (especially) when they feel too busy to make it happen. He has many passions, including sharing ways to enjoy an awesome marriage in 15 minutes a day, but his heart belongs with his wife Bethany and their three young kids.