Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Nagging worked!

A couple of years ago, my darling son decided he wanted to join the Police force (if he could).  But before he would consider sending in an application form (despite knowing that the application process could take months, even years) my son was determined to try to lose the ten kilo excess he was carrying from too much partying and drinking and get into shape so he wouldn't have to suffer like some of the unfortunates being filmed on "Recruits"  (Channel Ten television series about Police recruits joining the NSW Police force which we watched each week).

Now I had tried to encourage my son to eat healthier and to get him to do some sort of exercise for a very long time, so naturally when he told me that he would need me to support him in his efforts I did a very good job at not bursting out laughing at his earnestness. "Sure" I replied, straining to remain upright, because what I really wanted to do was roll around on the floor cracking up with hysterical laughter.  My son? Commit to exercise?  (Even the memory of this makes me want to laugh hysterically!)

So with a straight face, I asked him exactly how I could support him.  He rather surprised me when he asked me to be his Drill Sergeant (though, I shouldn't have been surprised, really, because at the time we were playing some electronic word game on Facebook (which the name escapes me), and which we had both reached the rank of Drill Sergeant only days previously).

For the next four to six months, three times per week I drove my son and myself up to our local Athletics park and I put him through his paces.  I barked orders for which he wasn't allowed to refuse or argue or whine over.  He performed laps around the track, dropped to the ground to give me twenty push-ups or sit ups or star jumps.  I ordered him to run up the steep embankment, do a loop around the tree then take the stone steps over in the tiered spectator area to return to the starting line and do another lap.

Most evenings I had to nag to force him to get his joggers on, to hop into the car.  He was lots of hard work convincing him to stick with his goal, but no matter how hard he protested, I nagged, nagged, and nagged a lot more until he surrendered just to get me off his case (I took being Drill Sergeant to heart).

Well, the police dream didn't pan out, but my son did develop a love of maintaining his fitness.  It was at his encouragement that I bought a decent treadmill after eighteen months of saving up to buy one.  I wanted one so I could try to regularly exercise whether it rained or not, but I got one because I knew it wouldn't be just me using it in the end, so was well worth the money I couldn't really afford to part with.

Earlier this year, after having gone months without walking on the treadmill, and feeling all the worse for this sad state of affairs, and my son not having used it either because he was always at the Gym, and my youngest daughter not being able to use it because her stride is longer than the treadmill's rolling platform, he said to me something along the lines that 'the treadmill is just becoming a dust collector', and we both committed to starting to use it all over again.

In January, I decided as part of my belated New Year's Resolution that I was going to try to walk three times per week on it for 45 minutes to assist me build and maintain my fitness and lose a few extra kilos.  I was tracking really well, until I went away to visit my mum.  Since I got back, I hadn't got on the treadmill at all, mainly because I still haven't caught up at work so my days have been very long and tiring so that last thing I want to do is be energetic or do some exercise.

Last weekend, my wonderful son who has maintained his regular going to the Gym and walking or running on the treadmill regime told me that he will support me to get back into the swing of exercise again, and would if I didn't comply, start being a Drill Sergeant towards me. I protested that I am coming home too exhausted to do even fifteen minutes, and somehow or other, he managed to nag me into agreeing to do ten minutes every single day until I re-gain my motivation and energy and drive to do this (or more) for my own self.

So, Monday night, goes something like: "Mum, have you don't your ten minutes yet?"  I snap, "No.  I just walked in the door, and have to cook dinner.  Can I at least have a bit of time to rest and relax before you start nagging?"  He replies, "Fine.  At 8pm, if you haven't gone and done your ten minutes by then, you will have to do fifteen minutes tonight."  I started to protest, but he counter-argued, "Fine, I'll make it twenty then."

Suddenly realising I am not going to come out winning here, I forced myself to complete ten minutes (I only did exactly ten minutes, not a second more) before 8 pm rolled around.  When I went back to the lounge room where my son was watching some television, before I could say a word, he said, "Hmm, that was only nine minutes and forty five seconds."  I had to argue hard before he would accept that I did do my exact ten minutes.

So, Tuesday night, I walk in the door with a bad headache that I had not been able to shake all day with either my Sunbreeze Oil (a first, which I am surprised at) or Nurafen Rapid Relief (which goes to show how bad and long I had been suffering because I hate taking medication to get rid of headaches).  Dear young son says, "But you're not going to try using that as an excuse to get out of your ten minute treadmill commitment... are you, Mum?" No son, not with YOU bullying me into it.

So, tonight, I beat son home, but then had to take youngest daughter out for driving lesson and get her to her basketball game. I walk back in the door yawning after picking her back up, and ask my daughter, "Are you going to eat or have a shower first?"  (She usually says 'eat' and tells me to have my shower first. Not tonight!)  Daughter replies, "Shower."  I try to talk her into her having the dinner that is waiting for her so I can go have my shower. She is almost in agreement when Drill Sergeant pipes up from playing his game and says, "You can't have your shower yet, Mum.  You haven't done your ten minutes yet."  I tried to protest.  I lose the battle.

I did another ten minutes on the treadmill tonight.

Thanks, son.  :-)

(Bloody nagging Drill Sergeants!)

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