Tuesday, December 22, 2009


February 5th, 2008
Like many kids this past Christmas, my boys got a Wii. As is typical with the kids’ video games, I didn’t have a clue and didn’t WANT to have a clue about how it worked or what the objective was for any of the games. But, like in the past, I let them talk me into learning how to play a game with them. I wasn’t thrilled about how long it took to create Mii - a little person saved on the Wii that’s supposed to look just like me - but the little brown woman with long hair and big eyes did look a little like me when we finally got done fighting over the features.
The first game I played was bowling. It wasn’t hard and it was something I could do with my 5-year old - no problem. Over New Years, we went to visit family in Mississippi and all of the kids were playing Dancing With The Stars on a cousin’s Wii. Now THAT was fun. But don’t think I just jumped in there with the 15 and under set… no, I watched and waited and shimmied in my chair until the older kids left and only the 8 and under were trying to figure out how to get the maximum points from doing the Cabbage Patch that I decided to jump in and “help.” 15 minutes later, I was actually perspiring a little! Maybe it was the cute little fur vest I was wearing and refused to take off because it matched the rest of my outfit, but whatever - I was warming up and working out.
I would have been fine if that were my last experience ever with the Wii, but what happened after New Years is the real point of this whole blog… One day my husband, a new-to-exercising former couch potato, was watching our boys run a Wii 400 meter hurdles against the neighbors kids when he decided to compete in a race. It was comical watching him tower above the heads of the young boys working his arms as fast he could. About 10 minutes later, he was losing a boxing match against our 5-year old. A few minutes after that, he was earnestly trying to win a Mario race against 7-year old twins and our 9-year old. That evening at dinner, he kept rubbing his upper arms. “Wow, I really got a workout today,” he exclaimed.
For the next week or so, my husband played the Wii like other people go to the gym once they start seeing results - religiously. I even got in on the action and raced him and the boys in a 100 meter dash and, I’m proud to report, I even won the 400 meter hurdles! (They only let me do that once.)
I’ve heard the reports of people throwing out shoulder joints and going to the emergency room with injuries, but in my household, the Wii is a pretty good substitute for a missed gym workout - at least from my husband’s point of view.

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