Because someone asked me … #NursesActive

Posted by: NHS Horizons - Posted on:

Originally published by Bev Matthews – 6th August 2019

Last Friday I was tagged into a tweet by the ever energising Kath Evans inviting me to join the #WeActiveChallenge.  

Well, I cannot resist a challenge and a 30 Day Challenge especially! And this is an easy one to follow: 

  1. Get active, anyway anyhow  
  1. Post a pic, any creative pic of activity with the hashtag #NursesActive (and don’t forget to include the middle “s” – plural nurses as we are in this together) 
  1. Follow the leaderboard and get badges by adding your twitter handle  
  1. Motivate your nursing friends colleagues to take part too 
  1. Read Kath’s blog about why this is an important challenge for our profession 

30 days is just the right amount of time to make sustainable change, and to do it with a community adds weight to the likelihood of me staying the course. I do consider I already do a level of exercise, more days than not I do my 10,000 steps, mainly by walking my two dogs: 

But I’d been thinking that I hadn’t been active at a pace to make a significant difference to my health and wellbeing so this challenge is particularly timely. 

As part of the NHS 70 celebrations I took part in my first parkrun at Coventry, motivated by my home team Horizons (have a read of my colleague Leigh Kendall’s blog if you haven’t come across Parkrun before). Now, whilst i thoroughly enjoyed it, I haven’t done another one since so one of my ambitions for this challenge is to run my second – and maybe with my colleagues from Birmingham City University at Cannon Hill Park soon!  

Now don’t get me wrong … I’m never going to run/jog/walk more than 5k – it’s just about the right length for me – and watching others run a marathon gives me enough pleasure to see their achievements. 

As the key for me is to build exercise up gradually, I’ve decided to set myself weekly targets. So here are my #NursesActive commitments for this week:  

  •  Walk the Inus with more purpose and pace (Junior has hip dysplasia so whilst I need to build up the pace for him slowly, in the long term this will be good for him too as he’ll build up his muscle mass to better support his hips) 
  • Take part in my equipilates sessions more seriously so that I do a little bit more with a little bit more intensity (although a 3 minute plank may always be beyond my endurance!!) 
  • As I am on study leave in Birmingham this week, I have decided to travel by bus and every day I will get off the bus at least one stop earlier 
  • Have at least one walking meeting with a colleague 
  • Poo pick my friends field at the weekend when I pop to see them and their three horses (believe me, it’s not as easy as it sounds!) 
  • Reclaim an overgrown part of my garden with at least three hours of gardening 

Some of my contributions may not seem ambitious to those who have more energy but I know at this pace I will be able to build my stamina and motivation to do a little bit more each week. 

As I was inspired to get involved simply because someone asked me, I want to ask YOU to get involved too.  

Together we can do this … 

For me being part of a like-minded community both physical and virtual is helpful in refreshing, refocusing habits. The #WeActiveChallenge offers us this August a chance to have fun, try something new and create a bit more ‘headspace’ to achieve some balance in our lives. Kath Evans, Director of Children’s Nursing, Barts Health…