Kinecting with My Inner Athlete, and My Kids

Every New Year brings with it a set of resolutions. In my case, those reolutions usually go something like this:

  • Eat better.
  • Lose Weight.
  • Exercise.

I almost never make it past January on the Eating Better or Losing Weight part, but last year I made it to September on the Exercise part.   I worked out (almost)  weekly in a Pilates class and in a Mexican folk dancing class.  It was as fun as any exercise can be, but then my schedule got out of control and I couldn’t find time to get to the classes regularly.  I have decided that I am a social exerciser.  I need to exercise in a group, preferably a group with many people for me to  hide behind, in a class that plays good music.

I have also decided that I am not an athlete. As a child I didn’t know there was such a thing as girls sports. My parents signed my brother up for little league football, baseball and basketball, and my sister and I became cheerleaders, or we took dance classes.  In high school I decided to try team sports so I joined the badminton team. BADMINTON! After one season which confirmed to me that I am not an athlete,  I joined the drama club and drill team.  As I have grown more,  (ahem) , mature in my years  I have not acquired a passion for exercise. I look at it more as a necessary evil.  I now understand that in order to make exercise a part of my life, I really need to enjoy the activity. DUH! But as much as I enjoyed the pilates and dance classes, that wasn’t enough. Exercise also takes time. And time is one thing that a working mother of four kids in a blended family is short on.  So my exercise routine puttered out as 2010 came to a close.  New Year, new me.

Yesterday, as I was polishing off the last of the Christmas food gift basket,  I heard my boys in the family room yelling and jumping around as they played with their new X-Box Kinect.  The X-Box Kinect is a video game which uses your body as the video controller. Players stand in front of the video console while watching the television screen and react to the video game being played.  I decided to give it a try. First, Nico and I played the bowling game. I reached out for the digital bowling ball seen on the screen, took my bowling stance , and swung my arm, releasing the ball. The ball appeared on the TV rolling down the lane and hitting one of the pins. Ok, so bowling isn’t my sport either.  The next game we played was beach volleyball.  I jumped, and dove, mimicking a real volleyball game. I knew there was a reason I went out for badminton and not volleyball. It’s hard.  I swear, I got sand in my eyes, I was playing so hard! But, we were also having great fun, playing together and laughing at ourselves!

This morning as I got out of bed my calves burned. I went to brush my hair and my arm was stiff. Diego came hobbling into my room complaining of  pain in his calves.  That’s when it occurred to me what happened. I had finally discovered an exercise which I could enjoy, and spend time with the family. Beach volleyball. On the Kinect. If only they made a badminton game.