Make the time to take care of yourself

I’m a sports fan. A huge sports fan.

And prior to my current marketing career, I was a sports writer. No, not a blogger … I was a tried-and-true, this-is-my-career, I-actually-get-paid-to-do-this sports writer.

College sports are my favorite. There’s nothing better than Saturdays in the fall filled with college football.

So naturally, I frequent a couple sports message boards just to keep up with the behind-the-scenes news and rumors of my favorite teams; however, this week, a post on one of these message boards caught my eye.

The post was titled “How do you stay fit and active?”

Of course I clicked into it, excitedly, to see the responses and perhaps offer my own fitness experiences.

Instead, I saw posts like this:

Currently I am not, unfortunately. The 2 year old does keep me moving around but the 2 month old has held me back from doing too much extra activity.

I remember when I had your kind of time. Vaguely. (In response to a another member’s post about his workout routine.)

Drink a lot of beer and chase the kids around.

On this went for 90-plus replies. Sure there were some people that said they made attempts to run or play sports or workout, either at home or at a gym.

But the vast majority of the responses were like the ones I noted above – very dismissive of exercise.

I totally get the blasé attitude towards working out as a new father. You’re worn down, you’re lacking sleep, you’re trying to take care of your wife, who just gave birth to a living, breathing human being after living with it inside of her for nine months.3ad915ba727d5d9377f15a279f928201

But it is too easy for many guys to allow this time in their life to consume them to the point where they forget to take care of themselves.

No, running to the gym for a two-hour pump sesh the day you bring the baby home from the hospital is not recommended.

But after a month or so to settle in, guys, you’ve got to set aside time to take care of yourself.

Trust me, I’ve been there. When we had our first child, I stressed out about so many other things that I forgot to pay any attention to my own health and well-being, and I wound up in the hospital with stress migraines.

My life now is no less busy than it was when I first became a new dad. I’m a father to two wonderful, adorable children, a husband to an incredible and loving wife, a VP at a software company managing a team, a regular volunteer at our church, and, as I said before, an avid sports fan that takes any chance to attend a game.

And yet, with all that on my plate, when my alarm goes off at 5:05 a.m. each morning, it’s to make sure I take care of myself. I’m in the gym by 5:45 working to make sure that, once again, I’m doing what I can to be there for my family for as long as I can.

Make the time guys. It’s there.

Don’t let being a father be your excuse to stop working out, or to never start at all. Let being a father be your excuse to be as healthy and fit as you can be, for your sake and for the sake of your children, who need their daddy.

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