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Mommy Gaming and Fitness: A Juggling Act

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photo credit: diametrik via photopin cc

Aside from child rearing, which is not for the faint of heart, I have a very active lifestyle. On a typical day, after my spawn is fast asleep, I’m doing intervals. I switch it up between walking and sprinting through thick forests, snowy mountains, and dark caves. I walk up to monsters ready to attack and sometimes I sprint away from bosses who are out to kill me. I am constantly on the go, never still. Oh except for my actual butt that is planted comfortably on my sofa. Insert large sigh here.

Society expects two things from the female gamer. We are to be either grotesquely overweight and ugly or stunningly beautiful with gigantic breasts and a tiny waist. Now I will admit, that the latter is probably never going to happen for me but I’d hate to live up to my potential of becoming an ogre. Which means, that I have to find a way to fit in a healthier lifestyle than just sitting on my butt fighting evil, eating junk food, and drinking Arbor Mist*. Hey, Arbor Mist is yummy and its cheapness means I can buy more!

So how does a Mommy Gamer find the motivation to fit an exercise routine into her already busy life?

  • You could hire a personal trainer. Try to find one that has similar interests to your own if possible. Otherwise, they might look at you a little funny when after the 5th burpee (I’m a low level fitness freak here!) you yell out “Ermagherd! I’m gonna wipe! Healz puleeze!” Look for a trainer with sleep deprived gamer eyes or ask to see their Gamestop card because if they don’t have one, you need to move on because really 10% off of used games IS that important.
  • You could play one of those funky dance games in your own living room! Unless you’re paranoid and believe your 360 is snapping your picture and automatically posting your picture to Facebook for all 867 (5309) of your nearest and dearest friends to see. Because that’s not embarrassing AT ALL. But forget that, you could involve the kids! Because at least then you’d be photobombed by the cutest kids EVER and no one would even notice you.
  • Here’s my favorite. Buy an exercise bike (I was lucky enough to score one for freaking FREE from Freecycle) and play your favorite racing gaming while you pedal. I like to play Mario Cart on the Wii so I can exercise my arms too! Pretend your pedaling is powering your cart and go faster for an extra boost of speed. If Yoshi doesn’t speed up, it’s because you’re not pedaling fast enough! Just don’t stop when the blue shell gets you.
  • You could also earn your gaming time. Set a number of fitness minutes per gaming minutes or say you have to exercise for 30 minutes to be granted gaming time. Just don’t work your arms too much, it’d suck to not be able to play because you did too many bicep curls.
  • Switch from your favorite beverage to water, lots of water. Every time you halt your gaming to pee, again, take a fiver to do some squats or a quick jog around the house. Then chug some more water. If you’re in the middle of a dungeon, tell your party that you’re taking a cig break or walking the dog. Somehow, they will totally forgive you.
  • Make yourself some fancy trophies or achievement badges for your accomplishments  Ooh or high scores! Challenge a gaming friend to beat your best score on your elliptical!

Maybe you won’t turn into a center folder gamer chick, but with a little creativity, you can totally make fitness fun and fit your gaming in too. Because really, who wants to give up their favorite MMO just to become healthy? We’re just fighting the stereotype here.

*Disclaimer: We at The Mommy Gamers believe that if you want to drink cheap wine, you should buy it in a box, not have fake Arbor Wine which is merely alcoholic soda that dresses up in a wine bottle.

About Amybeth Spears


Amybeth is on her own personal fitness journey to avoid ogre status. Between chasing a very active two year old and try to achieve greatness, she enjoys playing Guild Wars 2, Little Big Planet (1, 2, Karting), Mario Kart, Plants vs Zombies and many, many other totally cool games. You can read her regular blog, Healing Graces, for more awesomeness.

  • Jen

    I’m glad I’m not the only one paranoid about the kinect pics! haha I seriously log in to fb to see if something went bananas and it accidentally uploaded pics of my working out so I won’t look like a beluga whale. I think the mamas on here (including myself) should make a group where we can talk about fitness and gaming. I don’t talk to anyone else about exercise/eating healthy, so it’d be nice =]

    • Ha! You’re definitely not the only one. I’m the same way. The LAST thing I want is those pics on facebook. lol

      Jen, are you on My Fitness Pal? Marcia and I both are, and there is a fitness and gaming group on there which I’m a part of. Add me, I’m SickNdehed.

  • Marcia

    I love this post! Good writers are hard to find, but I think there are so many out there just lurking. The way you write just flows and made me smile. Great post!