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My Secret to Staying Healthy and Fit

After visiting Papillion, Nebraska, we headed west toward McCook. For those of you who don't know, McCook is a small town in Western Nebraska. Their town boasts of being home to the only Frank Lloyd Wright house in the state of Nebraska. It hosts the Buffalo Commons Storytelling Festival each summer. And, most importantly for me, it's the home of my sister and her husband (Jo and Tyler).

walking dog by the Frank Lloyd Wright house
Walking Leo by the Frank Lloyd Wright house

While Jo and Tyler were busy making the money during the day, my husband and I explored the town. We were so excited to get the chance to ride bikes again! Tom took this as an opportunity for us see what there was to see around town, and get a "secret workout" at the same time.

For those of you who don't know, I absolutely HATE working out.

In my mind, working out is something I'm forced to do to stay healthy. It means sweating and breathing heavy and being sore the next day and is no fun at all. With all that in mind, Tom is always trying to find fun ways to trick me into getting a workout in: hence the name "secret workout". The goal is to get in some type of activity and make it fun so it doesn't feel like the aforementioned definition of a workout. It feels more like playing outside in the neighborhood when you were a kid than dragging yourself to the gym.

Now that we're adults, our secret workouts can happen anywhere. We could go to a city in Europe, walk around for the day while seeing the sights, and log seven miles in the process --- secret workout. We could have a competition to see who could get to the car first from across the parking lot --- secret workout.

Bike Ride Through the Parks

On this secret workout through McCook, Tom mapped out a route that took us to four parks around town: one in each corner of the city. I love exploring and going to parks because of all the green and trees out there, so I didn't see this as a workout at all. Not sure if he planned it this way, but one of the parks was also a circuit workout area: a park with exercise stations located along a path that runs through it. This one's a little tricky, but since all the equipment looked like playground toys I didn't count it as a real workout either.

Lake Day Play

On a hot day, all four of us decided to go to the lake and brought Leo (Jo and Tyler's dog) with us. We played with Leo by tossing his toy into the lake to try and teach him how to retrieve ducks. He wasn't a huge fan of not having his feet touch the ground, but he loved retrieving his toy. It was so funny watching him hop through the water! Now to reveal the secret workout. Sometimes we had to chase him to get the toy back or make him chase us so he didn't eat goose poop... just being real.

playing fetch
Playing fetch with Leo

Jo and I also played around doing handstands and yoga poses. Never underestimate the amount of work it takes to balance on your hands or arms instead of your feet.

So what's the secret?

The real secret is to do something that's fun for you. Shift the mindset. Instead of working out, play. Explore... for long distances or with intensity. Live actively. Try new things and see what works for you. You don't have to run or drag yourself to the gym all the time to stay healthy, and that's something everyone can appreciate!


Think about it for a bit. What are your secret workouts? If you don't have one already, what would be a good secret workout for you? I'd love to know! I'm always looking for new ways to stay healthy and not think I'm working out.

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