As the flowers start to bloom and our attention turns to a new season, I am excited about hitting the streets in the early morning and running in the sunshine. It can be a challenge for moms who work outside the home and juggle so many tasks to focus on their own health and fitness. Some days, I have back-to-back TV appearances, meetings with my legal clients, planned activities with my two daughters and son, and a commitment to my husband to swing by a department store to pick up new ties and shirts. Rather than screaming and pulling my hair out, I opt for a quick run.
I have found that running is not only the best way to nurture my heart health, it’s also a big stress reliever. It’s easy for women to forget that heart disease is the leading cause of death for women and that it’s not a “man’s disease.” By reducing stress, laying off the chips and dips and by running four to five days a week, I have also been able to manage my weight. It’s not always easy to get my runs in, but I have learned to treat them like business meetings and to schedule them on my calendar. They have become non-negotiable. It’s so much easier to love the woman I see in the mirror when I know I have stayed true to my run schedule even when I have had too many chips with my veggie salsa. In this issue of Viva, “Think Yourself Thin: How To Love The Woman In The Mirror”, addresses that woman and how to admire her.
I also have learned that regular exercise is essential for dealing with so many other illnesses, even cancer. One of my dearest friends continued to walk regularly even after being diagnosed with breast cancer. Her commitment to her exercise was enormously helpful to her and her family as they all worked to support her. They found that accompanying her on walks—even very short ones—provided everyone an opportunity to reflect on the surrounding landscape and to reflect on positive memories. One Viva Ambassador shares her inspirational story about her personal struggle with cancer in this issue.
I hope you have many sunshine-filled spring days and whether you are a runner, walker or Zumba dancer, making a commitment to regular exercise will help you spring forward.