Kelly-Marie Stewart talks us through her fitness motivations and how she stays focused.
How do you stay focused when having a difficult day?When I’m having a difficult day I love to try and squeeze in a yoga session. It's great not just for fitness but for mind, body and soul. I always feel like I leave yoga feeling refreshed and peaceful. Even when I was ill I found my gym would always show me easier ways to participate in yoga sessions, than some of the crazy shapes the professionals contort themselves into! It is one of my guilty pleasures. Another thing I love to do is to take a drive out with our dog and the family to get some fresh air and have a walk - nothing clears your mind like the great outdoors.
Is the strength of your mind just as important as your physical strength?
I believe a clear mind is equally as important as a healthy body, so I always try to make 30 minutes of me time even if it's just wind down and have a peaceful bath away from the outside world. I also love phone free meal times; this is something I think we as humans no longer do often enough. However it's great to switch off from social media/emails and calls if only for teatime to truly appreciate our family. My little girl always has some great gossip from her infant school and I love how funny she finds her own story's. This quality time brings us closer as a family and I love it.
If you could only do one exercise to motivate you to do more, what would it be?
If I could only do one exercise to motivate me to do more it would have to be swimming, as even when paralysed it was my keep fit tool. My upper body strength was strong enough to allow me to never have to give this up and I believe that by doing this when paralysed it enabled me socially to keep that positive, feel good attitude to life. I’d love to bottle the chemicals that exercise gives us in our brain - I don't really understand why it helps, I just know it works.
Does your family help you stayed motivated?
My family help me stay motivated as sometimes I feel like my condition has stabilised and I'm a little bit stuck in a rut where my recovery is not going as great as I want it too. I tend to have these moments if I let myself get run down. My family are always quick to point out how far I’ve come and the obstacles I have overcome along the way. I used to set myself goals but then get disappointed if I didn't meet them on time. I found this so disheartening. So now I chose to take each day step by step and just make sure I'm making slow progress in the right direction health wise.
Is your physio long term and has this helped you enormously?
My physio is long term so far I’ve had 11 years of it and I do find if I miss a few sessions then it can send me backwards. However, at present I find my personal trainer is key to my health as he pushes me and encourages me to better myself, just a little, each session and then at the end of each month when we compare what we have achieved health wise in comparison with the month before it always makes me smile. Team work ...together everyone achieves more :)Read more about Kelly-Marie here, and follow her on Twitter too.