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Momma gets into shape for herself -- and her daughter



30453100 With the click of a button, I'm committed. To an exercise program. Yes, me. Yes, finally. I'm determined to lose 20 pounds, half of which I put on after I had my little one eight months ago.

Challenging myself to slim down is about more than simply shedding pounds. (To my surprise, I recently slipped into a size 8 dress that I wore pre-pregnancy.) It's a health matter. And one I take very seriously. In my mid-20s, I was diagnosed with high cholesterol and told I'd have to take statins for the rest of my life. Even though I wasn't overweight, I fought back with a healthier diet and exercise. I am determined that all of the pesky little dis-eases to which I'm genetically pre-disposed will NOT win. And, I'm married to an exercise physiologist turned physical therapist, so I know the importance of diet and exercise.

Being healthy resonates with me even more now that I'm a mother. Just as I try to model my faith and community responsibility by taking my daughter to church and volunteering, I've also got to model good health habits. That means I must do more than root for contestants on The Biggest Loser), one of my favorite guilty pleasures. I'm going to make time for exercise at least three times a week. Yes, brisk walks count. So, too, do the squats I do every day as I hold my 16-pound daughter in one arm and reach for the latest object she has thrown on the floor with the other. I squat to pick something up. She throws it back down. I pick it up. Back down. See a pattern here? I've also got a ton of exercise DVDs that I used pre-pregnancy. While my baby is sleeping, I'm going to do TurboJam. And on the rare weekdays that I'm not working, I may even try to participate in a Stoller Strides class. 

One of my co-workers is 40-plus and fabulous. She rollerblades with her children and recently completed a marathon. Wouldn't it be great if my daughter could see me do that? Wouldn't it be grand if she could join me? You've heard the one about the journey of a thousand miles beginning with one step? I take my first step Saturday in a  five-mile breast cancer walk. I already know I won't feel like going. I already know I'm going to want to sleep in. But I already know I'll be there -- pushing my daughter in her stroller every step of the way.   

-- Sherri Day


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