New Year, New Start

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For the past year and a half I’ve been really lazy, exercise-wise I mean. I have practically done no other exercise than walk from our apartment building to the closest wine shop, bakery or Izakaya (a Japanese bar that also serves food). The main excuse that I’ve used to abandon my previous gym routine and aerobic classes is that I am too busy; I work full-time, I have two young children, my husband lives in a different country and is in Japan to help out with the kids’ hobbies, parents’ evenings, PTA meetings, hospital appointments and play dates only 6 months of the year. And so, time is a similar luxury to me as modesty is to Vladimir Putin.

But when I saw a Japanese salaryman jogging/speed walking in a park in his suit-trousers and shirt presumably during his lunch hour (see photo) – I realized that if I really wanted, I would be able to find the time to get fit again. After all, the chances are that Japanese salarymen have even less spare time than me. They are the stereotypical Japanese workers that most Westerners have heard of. Many of them typically work 12-15 hour days, 360 days a year every year. I can’t but admit that if they can find the time to keep fit, so should I. And I will.


So, if you see a blond Western lady in a trouser suit wearing turquoise Adidas trainers and jogging in close proximity to a University campus in Osaka – please go and say hello – it’ll be me and I will be desperate for any excuse to stop jogging.

But as soon as we’ve done chatting, I will carry on jogging and will sing to myself:


It’s a new dawn.

It’s a new day.

It’s a new life for me.

And I’m feeling good.

(I’m feeling good by Nina Simone)

I wish you all a Happy New Year and success in your New Year’s resolutions whatever they are!


9 thoughts on “New Year, New Start

  1. Hyvähyvä! Joskus aikaisemmin itse ihmettelin että kuinka ihmeessä ihmiset jaksavat arjessaan vielä urheillakin mutta nykyään olen sitä mieltä etten jaksaisi arkeani ilman sitä! Reipasta uutta vuotta!

    • Kiitos. Hyvää vuoden alkua myös teille 🙂

      Joo ihan samat oli sulla ajatukset kuin mulla, onneksi olen vihdoin alkanut niin paljon kaipaamaan urheilua että järjestän aikaa sille. Puolitoista vuotta siinä hujahtikin sitä urheiluintoa odotellessa, mutta parempi kaiketi myöhään kun ei milloinkaan 😀

  2. You are inspiring! When I was a parent with young children two decades ago, energy was as much of an obstacle to exercising as time, but I did manage to get more exercise than I do now. I must do something about that. Is jogging your favorite form of exercise?

    • Not really – I am much more of a team sports, aerobics/zumba or martial arts person but I think jogging would be the easiest form of exercise to fit into my schedule. What’s your plan for doing more exercise?

      • Deep-water aerobics classes (or, if I cannot find any, swimming laps) and a mat+machine Pilates class and/or a yoga class. The last time I sustained an exercise class regime, it was with deep-water aerobics and mat+machine Pilates classes, and that combination proved to be ideal for me. Unfortunately, the pool facility closed, I had emergency abdominal surgery and the Pilates class was discontinued. It’s well past time to find workable alternatives!

  3. I feel you! I made an effort these past 6 months and it was only a 15 minute run with the dog every morning before work, or the occasional cross fit session in the morning (I bought one on amazon Japan). Got to keep it up this year. 2 weeks of no exercise and lots of food in Australia over xmas/new year has taken it’s toll!

    • A run every morning!? You are a star! 🙂 I’m aiming to do three 30-60 min exercise sessions per week.

      I’ve completely let my hair down for the past two weeks. We’ve been in England and I’ve pigged out like never before. Diet starts as soon as we are back in Japan. 🙂

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