Wednesday, March 04, 2009

What's your best tool to stay healthy?

I was visiting one of the blogs listed at the left a couple weeks ago. The question was asked, "What is your best fitness tool?" What's your answer?

My best fitness tool is my dog. For starters, she's always happy to see me. On Sunday I had a neighbor call to see if she had gotten out. "There's a big, black, happy dog running around my yard," he said. It sounded just like Annie, but wasn't. She was safe and sound in her kennel.

Dogs live in the moment, aren't worried about the past or the future, just enjoy being with you for whatever amount of time you can give them. They don't hold grudges. These are the reasons that my dog is good for my mental health -- her enthusiasm and zest for life rubs off on me.

On the fitness front, dogs are a good way to get more exercise. They need to be walked everyday. Mine also likes to go for bike rides when the weather permits. I like to call it "bliss on a bike."

I'll be honest, the puppy stage can be a challenge for your mental health. They chew stuff. They whee on stuff. They're high energy when they're awake, but take lots of naps. Huh. That was starting to remind me of young children. If you've got young children at home (babies, toddlers) you may want to wait to get a dog. They are a lot of work to train. My rule is, no family should get a dog until the mom wants a dog. 'Cause really, we all know that Mom is going to be doing the lion's share of caring for the dog.

On my last hike I brought Annie's harness to see if she would give me a little pull up the trail. It didn't really work. I think she's becoming too well trained for that -- she realizes that on all our other walks I don't like it when she pulls. Bummer. Last summer she "helped" me make it all the way to White Pine Lake. But there were also other hikers and another dog ahead of us. Maybe that will be the key to having her "pull" me a bit up the trail. (Note: I only do that when she's wearing her harness so that she can pull with her body/chest and not her neck.)

There you have it -- man's best friend is also this healthy housewife's best friend.


Suko said...

My own dog, Jenny, is also my partner-in-fitness. Together we walk in the park and hike the hills (knee permitting).

crazylady said...

My dog also motivates me... so so much !!! I also heard a nice tip recently: "become the person your dog thinks you are". I know in my own case I'm a much happier, energetic, positive person when I'm around my dog so I'm trying to be like that more in the rest of my life.

Angie said...

I love that you clarified about the harness... too funny. I could just see you popping up on the animal abuse blog list!! My best fitness tool is a friend knocking on your door at the crack of dawn. I can't get up for myself... but I totally do for someone else!

Cammy said...

What a beautiful fitness tool! My ipod shuffle isn't nearly as cute or lovable.

On the other hand, it hasn't wheed on the floor either. :)

Have a great weekend!