In Honor of the Boston Marathon today, I want to share a more recent memory with you about running...
Most if not all kids think that they know everything! I was definitely one of them. In my high school, if you participated in a sport each season, you did not have to take gym class. So almost the whole school played sports!
The Fall season was easy, I LOVED playing volleyball! I am tall and while people think height equals ability that is not true. I was an okay volleyball player, but I absolutely loved the game. The running around and diving for the ball just got my adrenaline going. So the Fall season was a snap!
However Winter and Spring was more challenging. There was no other sport I really liked, so I participated in track. Please note, I said "participated" and not "ran". I absolutely HATED running! So why track? I loved the field events. Javelin, High Jump, and Shot Put were just a few that I liked and loved to challenge myself to accomplish. The only problem was my coach felt you had to run at least one race in order to participate in a field event. Ugh!
I have very vivid memories of arguing with the Coach about running! To this day I am not exactly sure why. I never thought I could run. I am not one of those people who just starts running and can go for miles. Back then if I could make it to the end of the field I was happy. So since I did not enjoy running, I never challenged myself to run better or longer. Let's jut say, I am stubborn.
What I realized this Winter was that when you believe in yourself, want to challenge yourself and excel at something that you thought defeated you, all you have to do is change your mindset! When I am in Florida, I usually walk 5 miles a day. One day my boyfriend said, want to run for a bit? So since I am a tidbit competitive, I started jogging. As I ran, I kept saying, don't let him win, so breathe in, breathe out. Then we ran some more, after a few weeks, I could run a decent distance without dying. Don't get me wrong, I will never be a runner, but I accomplished a small goal that I always thought I could never do. And that made me feel on top of the world!
Working in the senior industry, I constantly hear from families and seniors, how the senior can no longer do this or that. Yes age does cause you to slow down, but when you consistently challenge yourself at whatever you do, you stay young mentally and physically. Just knowing in your head that you can accomplish a goal, gives you a boost. And staying active, keeps you young physically.
So what can you do to help your senior family member stay young? What challenges will get them excited and help them feel worthwhile? Take time to encourage them to stay mentally and physically active!!!
Home Instead offers free monthly newsletters with tips and advice for caregivers of elderly loved ones.
Each Home Instead Senior Care franchise is independently owned and operated.