When the COVID-19 pandemic hit, gyms and organized sports leagues were closed, making it difficult for Dr. Todd Alec and his family to exercise regularly. As physical activity is important to ensure the family stayed healthy and active, they decided to build a gym at home.
“It's something I've always wanted as it's easier to set aside the time to do some weight lifting when I can, either when the kids are sleeping at night or before work in the morning," says Todd.
Originally from Nak'azdli Whut'en, Beaver Clan, Todd lives on the traditional territories of the Lheidli T'enneh (also known as Prince George, BC) with his wife and their three boys. When he isn't working in community or serving First Nations people through the First Nations Health Authority's Virtual Doctor of the Day program, he spends time with his family and takes care of his health and wellness with various types of physical activity.
Todd mainly stays active by playing ice hockey, which is also one of his passions. He enjoys playing in both the winter and summer seasons for up to three days a week.
“This commitment forces me to exercise, stretch and have a consistent workout – and the friendly competition motivates team members to do additional work, like weightlifting or cardio, to stay in shape and play well," says Todd.
With a gym at home, he adds that taking care of his physical well-being is much easier because there's no need to travel or leave the house, which can be challenging with three boys and their own busy schedules.
“We have commitments, sometimes up to five days a week, with sports tournaments, soccer games and play dates," explains Todd. “So for my wife and me, it's important to try and maintain balance and find some time for ourselves and our own health and wellness."
The family eventually invested in a Peloton—an exercise bike—to help them get a cardio workout and build endurance, and to continue to stay active at home, especially during the winter months of the pandemic.
“Having the bike at home has been really beneficial and has made a huge difference – not just for our physical wellness, but our emotional, mental and spiritual health too, says Todd. “I find it extra helpful when I'm not feeling that motivated to workout. It's great having some gym equipment on hand so I can keep myself active, my body healthy and my mind clear."
Now that summer is here, Todd and his family are setting some goals for themselves to get outdoors, enjoy nature and spend more time on the land. Activities the family loves doing together include hunting, fishing and spending time by the lake. The Alecs are looking forward to helping their kids burn some energy and have fun at the same time this summer!
Todd recognizes that achieving and maintaining balance, including taking time for exercise and physical wellness, is not always easy. He believes the key is to try different things and find something you're passionate about, and/or finding something you can do with the people you love.
Join the 30x30 Active Challenge and get moving!
It's never too late to put more physical activity into your life. Join the FNHA's 30x30 Active Challenge during the month of June and you could win a gift card from SportChek!