‘It’s important to make time to look after yourself’.
Yep, I’ve heard that countless times from well-meaning relatives/friends/random shop assistants. It's great in theory, but as most working parents know, the reality of finding that time for yourself – let alone your health – is completely different in practice.
Now, before I unleash my wellness secrets as a working mum to a one-year-old and three-year-old, (spoiler alert: there’s no magic pill or miracle cure. What a shame), I do want to put a few caveats squarely on the table:
1. Apologies for the “j” word, but wellness is a journey, not a destination. There’s no crossing-the-finish-line-and-accepting-that-trophy moment. It’s an ongoing effort that needs to be worked at one day, one decision and even one snack at a time.
2. I’m by no means an immaculate vision of perfect health. I have productive days, poor days and downright decadent, indulgent days. I'm not always 'healthy' in the traditional sense of that term, but I try to prioritise wellness, as much as I can.
So here we go.
‘You can’t out-run a poor diet,’ as the old saying goes. And to be honest, that’s just not a realistic option for me anyway, because carving out a clear hour-and-a-half at the gym just isn’t feasible for me on a regular basis. Pats on the back if you find a way to do it consistently, but for me there’s just too many pressing and last-minute family or work needs.
So that’s part one - accepting that I can’t rely on formal exercise to keep my health afloat. (But I’m all about incidental exercise – more on that later.)