A Politician Who Is Passionate About Fitness?

Anne Marie Gurney is a a homeschooling mom friend of mine, and she’s running – and I do mean running – for the Oregon House of Representatives. When I asked if I could interview her for Fit2B Studio, she said yes! Here is her video, and our interview follows.

Bethany: How does fitness play a role in your personal life? What are your favorite physical activities?

Gurney: Fitness in my personal life has become very important to me over the last year as I have made the commitment to take care of my health. My favorite activity that I have purposely chosen to challenge myself with is running.

Bethany: How do you think that being physically fit make you more “fit to be” in office?

Gurney: I have found that I have incredible stamina now. When I take the 45-60 minutes three times a week to work out, I have the stamina that makes it so I can work hard in my office for 18 hours days. I sleep better and my body is fueled better. Being physically fit makes it so that I can take on hard days, and when I have my days off I can go hiking and running and have the stamina to enjoy those activities.

Bethany: You are running in the race to be an Oregon House Representative. What are you the most passionate about changing in Oregon?

Gurney: Changes I am passionate about for Oregon: a) Jobs. We have so many job creating opportunies as a state that red tape and bureacracy have stifled. b) Education. Oregon ranks 43rd among 50 states for academic outcomes. We have a 1/3 drop out rate and when our kids do graduate and go to college, 40% of them must take remedial courses while in college to get them to college level. Our children deserve better. 3) Budget. Oregon doesn’t have a revenue problem. It has a spending problem. Our budget has ballooned over the last decade yet we keep hearing about cuts. Just like our households in times of economic hardship, we live within our means, so must our government.

Bethany: Are there any parallels you can draw between the challenges of staying physically fit and running on pavement in comparison to what it takes to represent our state?

Gurney: Parallels. Yes, I see parallels. When I go running physically in my neighborhood, it hurts. It’s painful and uncomfortable. I wonder many times if I will make my goals. I go through the mind games of “If I stop, I fail and don’t meet my goal but it would feel good. I am not dying, I can keep going….” I think anyone who has been in public office has those wavering moments where their confidence is shaken or the desire to rethink the goal creeps in. I think keeping fit, staying on a course, letting past success boost current confidence – all of those things are tools and lessons we can learn from staying fit to help us in our daily lives.

Bethany: What do you think about the state of our country’s health as a whole?

Gurney: I am concerned about our country’s health. As I get older, and I start realizing the fitness choices I am making now will absolutely affect my golden years, it is sobering. Our biggest power in changing these trends is realizing our power as consumers. I think we are seeing this now. If we want more nutritious things on our shelves to purchase, we need to purchase those items. If we don’t want fast foods, don’t buy them. I think we have seen more health food stores, choices and products available to consumers.

Bethany: What is one piece of advice you’d like to give other moms about keeping their kids healthy?

Gurney: Keeping my kids healthy is difficult! Several things I do: The daily snacks and foods I keep on hand in the house are healthy ones, with a few treats. They participate in community sports. I also realize my huge influence as a parent by setting an example. When I stretch and run, my kids want to hop on their scooters and join me. When I schedule to do a 5K, they want to join me. They have complimented me on my successes over this last year, and I make a point to compliment them on their healthy choices. We have so much influence in our role as parents through simple means. Encouraging words to our kids is a big tip. Plus making sure we as moms are doing something for ourselves physically our kids can notice and follow our example has been a big discovery for me over this last year.

Thank you so much, Anne Marie, for participating in this interview. Your insights are helpful and valuable! For more info about Anne Marie Gurney for Oregon House of Representatives, visit her facebook page by clicking here!

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