Meet Michelle, creator or ‘Outdoorsy NZ’. Her website inspires Mums to find their energy outside, engage with their kids and rejuvenating themselves, kicking the cabin fever in this modern society.
Can you tell us a bit about your family?
I live in New Zealand with my husband and my son, who has just turned three.
Can you tell us a bit about your active lifestyle? Have you always been active?
I’ve always loved the outdoors. Our family sailed a lot as I was growing up, and I always really enjoyed hiking and getting out there.
What activities / sports do you enjoy most?
I love trail running, hiking, snowboarding, mountain biking, and anything to do with the sea!
Do you enjoy competitive sports?
I’m not a particularly competitive person. For me, relaxation and enjoyment comes from getting out into beautiful surroundings, not by trying to overtake people! Having said that I do appreciate the vibe and dynamic excitement of a race or event.
What do you think is the best aspect of being an ‘active Mum’?
I think being a fit mum gives me more energy in general to cope with the day-to-day chaos that is parenthood! I sleep better at night and can think more clearly when I feel fit and healthy.
What tips do you have for other mums wanting to engage in a fit and active lifestyle?
Try and get outdoors every day. Even if it’s just a ten minute walk around the block, build it into your day and start from there. Have a goal, such as a track that you want to hike, or a 5km parkrun. Meet up with a friend for a walk instead of a coffee. Have fun running around with your children! See the wonder of the world from their eyes 🙂
Do you have a favourite motivational quote?
She believed she could do it, so she did.
What piece of equipment can’t you live without for an active family?
Decent raincoats! A bit of rain never hurt anybody, don’t let it stop you 🙂 Our Mountain buggy terrain has been awesome, too.
Please tell us about your online community ‘Outdoorsy NZ’
Outdoorsy NZ encourages families to feel the freedom and wildness of a life outside, even if they are living in the city. In particular, it inspires and motivates Mums to get their kids off the couch and out into this wondrous world of ours – rejuvenating themselves in the process. Launched late 2015, we revolve around adventure, learning, curiosity, fun, and interaction between mother, child, and environment.
What inspired you to create the community
Like many mums, I found that my priorities changed after the birth of my son in 2013. It became really important to me to instil a love for the outdoors in my little man, to develop a close and engaged relationship with him, and to channel his (BOUNDLESS!) energy into interacting with the environment (rather than wrecking the house, ha ha). Getting outdoors presses my reset button, too – it’s literally a lifesaver for me! So many of my friends were asking me where to go, what to do, how to get their kids off the screen and doing stuff outside instead, that I thought I would start a blog about our adventures, and it has grown from there. Although we’re based in NZ, I try to keep in mind that I have followers all around the world and come up with ideas that Mums can do anywhere.
What does your son think about his fit active mummy? Do you have any stories to share i.e. something that surprised you / something they have said to show they are proud of their mum?
It’s more that I’m proud of him! I love the way that my son’s curiosity is developing more and more. Ever since he was just a tiny baby in the front pack, I’ve prattled on to him on hikes about the names of all the native trees, let him touch the leaves and crawl around in the dirt (good for the immune system, AND fun – double bonus?!) and now that he’s three the questions that he asks just blow me away. The other day we had a great conversation about the difference between deciduous trees and evergreen ones…I think he has become so much more perceptive and enquiring as a result of all the time we spend together outside 🙂
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