forever young.

A huge part of obtaining and maintaining the most beautiful version of ourselves is to, of course, make physical activity a part of our daily lives. But it isn’t always that easy. I will be the first to admit that my daily exercise routine is less than commendable. That is, if I could even be considered to have an exercise routine. I grew up a dancer, this being my main form of exercise for many years. I was never all that into sports. My mom actually recalls a memory of me in at maybe 6 years old in my first soccer game. She says she knew then that I wasn’t going to be into competitive sports as she watched me run all over the field chasing, not the ball, but a butterfly. I liked painting, and redecorating my bedroom, and playing dress-up with my mom’s clothes. I liked pretty things. Dancing worked for me because it was fun. I didn’t feel like I was exercising. I was creating something that I found to be beautiful, and in the process, getting a workout.

I sometimes toy with the idea of taking a dance class again, but being a traveling-working mom, find myself lacking the time to commit to the schedule. Or perhaps I’m lacking the desire to admit that I am no longer physically capable of doing the dance that I once did so well. I do yoga from time to time, but again, feel that it’s missing that level of ‘fun’ that I personally need to commit myself to an activity. For the most part I feel discouraged by the idea of ‘working-out’. Until recently, when I found myself hula hooping in the children’s toy isle in Target.

I was in search of something for my 8 month old (to be honest I can’t remember what that was), but I think I was enjoying the excuse to behave like a kid again! Having a child is beautiful for so many reasons. One of them being that they allow us to reconnect with that youthful-ness that we once carried unknowingly on our shoulders, like a set of wings. I believe that as we all grow into our ‘adulthood’ we let go of such an important part of who we were as children. We were free. Free to dance, chase butterflies in the middle of a soccer game, or even hula hoop in the middle of a department store without worrying about whether or not it was age appropriate. I think that’s the problem with the word ‘exercise’. It’s contrived, and intentional. It is an anticipated, scheduled “performance of some activity in order to develop or maintain physical fitness”Wikipedia. When we were kids, we never used the word exercise. We played. And while we played, we were unconsciously exercising.

Long story short, I bought that hula-hoop, and I have to say it isn’t as easy as I remembered it being. But, it’s fun, and it is seriously exercise! A couple of weeks ago I had my boyfriend, two of his friends and his mother all out in the street in front of our house in old Quebec city hula hooping away. It was hilarious! We all laughed as we watched one another try desperately to keep the thing above our hips.

I’ve been hula hooping almost daily now, and in paying more attention have noticed that the hula hoop is making a bit of a come-back in the adult world. There are actually hula hoop dancing videos(some a bit cheesy, and some of which are pretty impressive) for sale as a work out alternative. I think this is awesome. I think we as adults need to take the time to allow ourselves to be playful, to be light-hearted and to reconnect with our inner-child. So I propose, this summer when the weather is warm and beautiful, and the natural energy from vacationing children is plentiful, that we all absorb some of that energy. Pick up a hula-hoop, or a racket set from your local Target or Wal-Mart. PLAY. Remember what it feels like to be light-hearted, because being light-hearted is the best summer vacation of all.

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One thought on “forever young.

  1. How funny – I hula-hooped as an adult for the first time last fall, when I was volunteering at the yoga place, and had a similar reaction! I haven’t bought a hoop yet, but maybe when I’m a bit more settled, I’ll invest. So much fun.

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