Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Working towards being a healthy leader

by Jenni

I have a love-hate relationship with my son’s Wii. Normally I play Mario Kart on it, kick the kids’ butts (I’m pretty good at that game) and move on to television watching or knitting. But recently my husband was able to get us a Wii Fit. For those of you not in the know, a Wii Fit is basically a board you can stand on and play games (shifting your balance, stepping on and off, walking on the board). There are supposed to be other games you can buy to use with the board, but we’ve only been playing with the game the board came with. And those games are exercise games.

At first, I thought to myself, “Hey, self, that is awesome! You need exercise because walking from the book I’m reading for class to the fridge for a snack isn’t really exercise. Especially when the snack is pie from Thanksgiving.” I also thought maybe it would give me a push towards participating in the “Living Well at Luther” program this year (part of Healthy Leaders).

I started out happily enough (except that every time I step on the board a surprised voice from the game says, “oh” which I believe is actually the game saying, “Oh… wow, you weigh more than I expected. Maybe you should lay off of the carbs for a few weeks. Could you put one of those tiny kids back on?”). There are a lot of fun games like yoga (Apparently, I have bad balance as I find the Wii Fit repeatedly asking, “Do you trip a lot when you’re walking?”), skateboarding, strength training and Hula hooping. There is even jogging around a lovely island. Despite my reservations, I started to play the game regularly and pushing my self to do better than the kids (we’re a competitive family). As a nerd girl, I can’t think of a better way to exercise than using a video game to trick me into working hard. That’s the love of the relationship.

Let me introduce you to the hate. See, you can play against other family members in this stupid game. What do my 10-year-old daughters love to do? Why the two-person run with mom, of course. Normally I jog at a slow-ish pace getting my heart rate up and trying not to fall over (okay fine, Wii Fit trainer, yes, I do trip a lot when I’m walking). My daughters, on the other hand, are young enough to think that people actually run for fun. And for speed. We start off with a nice, gentle run. But soon they feel restrained and dart ahead of me. Then they stop and wait for me to get close and dart ahead again. The entire run is spent playing catch up with the girls. Who don’t get breathless, either. I’ve found a good mantra to keep me running is, “I hate you, Wii Fit” which they think is a hoot-and-a-half.

Despite the hate of the stupid Wii Fit (wait, these games require me to use my muscles? That’s why I’ve been hurting each morning?), I refuse to let the anthropomorphic board on the screen win. One day, I hope to step on the board as the healthy leader I know I can be and have an “oh” that really means, “Oh… you’re so light and amazing. Nice work!”


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Laughing...TOTALLY get it! :-D

12/02/2010 08:15:00 AM  

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