As Mother’s Day fast approaches, there are so many special things that moms look forward to: breakfast in bed, homemade cards from the kids, a nice spring bouquet or even personalized jewelry from the hubby.
While those gifts are thoughtful and always appreciated, most moms just want to spend the day with their loved ones. So this year, I’d like to challenge you to forego the chocolates and picture frames and encourage a different kind of gift that also gives back to those you love – the gift of your health and well-being.
Mother’s Day marks the kick-off of National Women’s Health Week (May 13-19): a week designed for women across the nation to make their health a top priority and take simple steps to live safer and healthier lives. Brought to you by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office on Women’s Health, the theme this year is “It’s Your Time”, encouraging women to take time for their health and receive regular checkups, eat healthier, get enough sleep, manage their stress, and stay active with fitness and exercise.
As many busy moms know, it’s easy to get caught up in the daily tasks of work and family life. Between work, cooking and cleaning, making lunches, paying bills, shuttling the kids to where they need to be, spending quality time with your spouse, and absolutely everything in between, you might laugh at the thought of “me” time. But as a result, our health and fitness suffers, leaving us to be no good to anyone. If you’re guilty of neglecting one of the most important people in your family, pull out that to-do list and add yourself back at the top. Not only will you reap the benefits, but so will everyone around you. Here’s why:
An Active Mom Is a Happy Mom
Besides the obvious physical benefits, activity and exercise can have a profound effect on your mood and overall state of mind. Whether it’s a 5-mile morning run or a brisk walk around the block, exercise has been found to stimulate the body’s production of endorphins and increase serotonin, making you feel happier and more elated, while also decreasing cortisol and other stress hormones that bring about feelings of anxiety and sadness.
Mom Stamina: Sun Up, Sun Down
Moms are expected to be the Energizer Bunny: going, going, going all day long. To keep up the stamina to answer our kids’ many questions, referee sibling rivalries, and play 17 games of Duck Duck Goose, exercise and proper nutrition are vital.
Moms Are Role Models–In Every Sense
Children watch and imitate their parents, looking to them as role models. With 1/3 of children and adolescents in the United States being overweight, parents have a duty to make activity and nutrition a priority in their family.
So this Sunday, consider lacing up those running shoes and kicking off National Women’s Health Week with a bang. Better yet, make your new health journey a family affair! Active.com is the perfect place to get started. The world’s largest online directory of activities has over 380 Mother’s Day Walks/Runs nationwide and counting, so you’re sure to find one near you. It doesn’t matter if you’re a serious fitness buff or a beginner, Active.com has activities for any level of fitness. Register your family, look up health, fitness, and nutrition tips, or pose any questions to the thriving Active.com community – it’s all there in one-stop-shop.
This Mother’s Day feel EXTRA good about yourself, your role in your family, and the amazing life you have ahead of you.
Kristin Carroll leads our corporate & consumer marketing teams and gets active by chasing after her two little girls, trying to stay fit and chasing after big time adventures.