A Bicycle Built For Four
When I was still dating my now husband, we used to do a lot of fun outdoor activities together. In fact, when we first met back in 1992, I was a rollerblading fiend - I taught myself how to blade in Central Park while large trucks passed me by (not the smartest move in the world) and even commuted more than 30 blocks to work on wheels - and it didn't involve a taxi, bus or a subway.
If you think my rollerblading addiction was a bit over the top, I also love to ice skate and would oftentimes carry my ice skates over my shoulder, rollerblade to Wollmann Rink in Central Park and skate for an hour all by myself. And let's not forget all those hip hop classes at Bally's Total Fitness where I'd sweat for 90 minutes in a room full of rhythm challenged women as our instructor/choreographer attempted to get us to slide, kick, turn and snap our fingers all at the same time.
When we moved out of Manhattan and lived in Forest Hills, Queens, my soon to be husband and I purchased his and her bikes and proceeded to ride on the weekends and weeknights. We even traversed nearly 10 miles one afternoon visiting his mom, who lived at least three neighborhoods away. But then we got married and had kids and all bets were off.
I really did try to keep up with our love of the outdoors until fitness as I knew it came to what felt like a grinding halt. Over the past 12 years I've gotten in and out of the groove so much that I'm starting to think that I'm never going to re-claim the body I once had when I rollerbladed to work, ice skated for an hour and sweat to what is now the oldies, in a gym that probably no longer exists.
I have taken a few baby steps to find my way back to fitness. I recently purchased a brand new bicycle and when I brought my daughter along for a test drive, she begged me to get her one too. Though it seemed like an extravagant purchase at first, what I've discovered is that by investing in "Hers and Hers" bikes, I now have an opportunity to bond with my daughter in a way we've never done before.
Over the past few weeks, Becca and I have gone on bike rides together where we lose ourselves in conversation and talk about everything and anything under the sun. Trust me, when you're the mother of a 12 year old, conversations like the ones we have while cruising around our neighborhood are pretty hard to come by.
My son even got in on the act last weekend when I took out my bike and he opted for his electric Razor scooter and we took a leisurely ride near his school, friends' houses and a few blocks we had never visited before.
Though I don't have the time to pursue all the things I did before I had kids, I do feel like I've finally taken a step in the right direction. It's not like I'll be taking my bike on my morning commute to Manhattan any time soon, but at least my kids are finally at an age where we can get fit together. And honestly, I can't think of a better way to spend quality time with your family.
How does your family experience fitness together?