Gyms and Fitness Clubs

Thinking Practically: 2. Better quality time


If you have children you know how active they can be. Sometimes I wish I had the ability to bottle up their energy and use it for myself. Just think of all the extra work that could be accomplished if this were possible. Although exercise may not bring back that childlike energy, it can do wonders to boost your current energy levels.

I often ask new members of my health club, after a month or so, what they feel has been the biggest change in their life since starting an exercise program. Without question, the most common response is that they have more energy. This answer comes after only a few weeks of exercise.

Having more energy allows you to do more on a daily basis, therefore making you more productive. On the same note, how many times have you come home from work and had your kids tugging at your pants saying, "Let's play"? After a long day at work you just don't have the energy to do it. But, because you haven't seen them all day you agree to play for a while. Despite the fact that you agree to play with them, your heart just isn't into it. Don't fool yourself into thinking they can't see this.

Patrick Morley, in his book Seven Seasons of a Man's Life, talks about the value of spending time with your family. He says that, "Many dads today suffer from the Weekend Day Syndrome. They slave away at their work so hard Monday through Friday that they rarely see their kids except on weekends. They become two-day-a-week dads...Time is everything to a relationship, whether with your wife or kids."

Though in this passage Morley refers only to dads, this can be equally true for working moms.

The results of a lack of energy after only a normal workday can be similar to what Morley discusses about those who work extra-long hours. The point is that proper attention is not given to your family.

Family time, especially time spent with your kids, needs to be enjoyed and cherished. Those of you who have grown children know how fast they grow up. Wouldn't you like to have the energy and enthusiasm to play with them day after day? What parent wouldn't? Or, how important is it to have the energy to engage in lively conversation with your spouse when they need to talk?

The fact is our lives are so busy we often lack the energy needed to do all the things we'd like. We need to determine the priorities in our lives and put them first. Making exercise a priority will increase your energy level so you have the energy necessary for quality time with an even higher priority in your life...your children or spouse.