It was December 22nd, 2014 and I vividly remember looking at my newborn for the first time and thinking my life and my body will never be the same. If I’m being honest, those thoughts were coming more from a place of fear rather than a place of joy. A place of knowing I would immediately begin making adjustments to a new routine that involved this new little life God had so graciously blessed me with. A place of refinement.
You see, I started to prioritize fitness in my life when my father passed away suddenly at a young age. It became an outlet, a stress reliever and most importantly a motivation to live the earthly life I knew God had in store for me. When I entered motherhood I had no idea how I would find a balance of these two worlds. Now as a mother of 3, I’ve made many adjustments in each season I’ve experienced thus far to find that balance and know I will have to make many more as my girls grow and seasons shift.
Here are three practical tips on prioritizing your personal health as a mother in any season.
- Remember you were made in HIS image. Genesis 1:27 “So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them.” This was pivotal for me, because it gave me the encouragement I needed to want to glorify Christ with the blessing of this body He gave me. It allowed me to look deeper and ask myself hard questions like “Am I representing Christ well with the way I’m treating myself?”, “Am I caring for myself in a way that represents Christ?”, “Am I honoring God with the example I am setting for my children on how they treat their bodies.”
- Schedule out time for yourself to exercise. I know mom guilt is real, but let’s be honest, we need to take care of ourselves so we can take care of them. Sure, this might mean sacrificing something else but I promise it will be worth it. Each week, map out specific times you are going to focus on your physical health. Maybe that looks like waking up early before the kids wake up. It could look like pressing play on an at home gym program during nap time. Look at your lifestyle and try to carve out non-negotiable time for YOU. This doesn’t have to be every day, come up with a system that works for you and your family but make it a non-negotiable. Remember consistency over perfection.
- Involve your children! While exercising may be considered a break for you, it doesn’t have to be all or nothing. If there are days where you can’t do it alone, invite your children to join! Use that time as a way to bond and build strong relationships. You will show them that you are prioritizing caring for your body and they will begin to learn and desire the same. This doesn’t have to look like a weight lifting program. Get outside and go for a bike ride or a walk. Adventure down to the canal and look for creatures. Just focus on movement! They are always watching and learning.
My hope is that you found these words to be uplifting and encouraging. Know that whatever season you are in, God will provide a way for you to focus on your health. Make it a priority and a responsibility, not just for you but for those who love you as well.