Most readers of the blog would know that I am an avid runner and CrossFit enthusiast. I haven’t always been a runner, nor I have always been interested in functional fitness, but I am super glad that I have as it has such a hugely positive impact on my life.
The impact hasn’t been one dimensional either, yes my health and fitness has improved, but so has my diet, my stress levels, I have made wonderful friendships, it has also increased my self confidence and my sense of efficacy which has helped me achieve challenging goals in my business.
To me fitness isn’t just limited to our bodies, I think we can apply the concept of fitness to key areas in our life :
- Family – the state of our fitness is defined by our relationships with individual members of the family unit and the level of family harmony.
- Function – our functional fitness. Functional fitness is being able to perform the activities of daily life more easily and without injuries. It is about being able to squat down and pick something up from the floor, or to deadlift a heavy toddler having a tantrum so you can leave the supermarket or having the endurance to keep up with the preschooler as he runs around the park.
- Finances – having a budget and sticking to it, to reduce the stress and keep the family finances fit.
Like with functional fitness, to get into shape in the first place it can take some work and most often it requires a plan, for example:
- A plan to get you from the couch to running 5k.
- A plan to get you lifting weights using StrongLifts 5 x5 program
- Following Yoga With Adriene’s Yoga for Beginners program
But once you have worked through the initial learning curve, mastered the required movements etc, it does get easier. Having achieved your goal, you can decide whether you want to create another goal to work towards or aim to maintain your fitness. Maintaining your fitness fit is much easier when you have created a solid foundation.
The other two areas of family are just the same. With our finances to be able to measure our fitness we need to have a budget and track what we spend. You can see and download the spreadsheet we use here.
With family, if every meal time is stressful, school mornings end with arguments and/or tears and mum is the only one who does any cleaning, then family fitness probably needs a little work! Like with the finances, where we use a budget to create a foundation to help measure and maintain fitness and with functional fitness we use plans to help us achieve our goals, fitness in family life can be improved through using plans and processes, for example:
- Menu planning to take the stress out of dinner time.
- Morning routines for the kids and you, so everyone leaves the house calm and on time.
- A family contribution schedule to spread the workload of keeping the house clean and tidy.
None of these areas of life work in isolation either, which is why fitness in all areas of life is important. They all interact and impact on each other:
- If the family finance fitness is low, then it will increase stress which can have a negative impact on family harmony.
- If your functional fitness is lacking then your patience, stamina and energy can be impacted causing negativity in relationships with individual family members and decreasing family fitness.
- If family fitness requires work as you currently do too much for everyone else in the family, you may not find time to exercise which reduces your functional fitness, further lowering family fitness!
Some areas of life will require more attention at certain times than others and that is okay. Just like you can miss a week or two of running without overly reducing your fitness, you can give more of your time, attention and energy to the area needing it and simply be in maintenance mode in the others. It is only if we swing too far, for too long will we see significant impact.
So I encourage you to take a fitness audit today. Assess your fitness levels in terms of family, function and finances and see if any area needs work. If it does, then create or find a plan to help you do that. Good luck!
Want to work on family fitness?
Do you already know that family fitness is an area that you want to work on? Then my e-course can help you! Planned + Present is a seven week e-course to take you from feeling out of control and overwhelmed to feeling planned and present. It is a step-by-step guide on how to organise the chaos of family life while still leaving space to enjoy it.
With the drive of wanting to be organised it can be easy to forget why we want to be organised – to be able to spend more time enjoying our family. The course teaches you how to establish plans and processes for those repetitive tasks of family life, allowing you to be more effective and efficient with your time, so you can be more present with your family which will help give family fitness a significant boost!
Planned + Present includes seven in-depth lessons, for you to work through. And with lifetime access to the course, you can go at your own pace and can dip back in any time when you feel the fitness of family life needs a little work.
To find out more about Planned + Present and sign up for the course head here – Planned + Present.