The Mom “Hour of Power”: Faz Gaffa & Aarika Lee

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In our Mom “Hour of Power” Series, we ask moms how they would choose to restore, refresh and reset their day in an hour of power. In this third installment, we profile writer Faz Gaffa and musician Aarika Lee.

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It was their mastery of the written word that made Faz and Aarika a dynamic duo — Faz a writer and Aarika a songwriter & musician. Now, their common interests (and struggles) continue to bind them ever closer. Faz and Aarika, who both work in a tightly-knit team at boutique marketing firm, Elementary Co, are mothers of toddlers, and they work out together as well.

The duo's daily routines revolve around balancing acts — their children, careers, personal and fitness pursuits vie constantly for their attention and commitment. Too often, they have found themselves struggling to juggle work deadlines whilst dividing their  free time between their toddlers, husbands, and themselves.

“It’s a balancing act that’s exhausting. Everyone does it too, though, no?” says Aarika.

An exhausting balancing act, indeed — so much so that Aarika was unable to pinpoint the single hardest factor of motherhood when we asked her.

“There’s no one thing, really. Some days it’s the lack of sleep, and other days it’s not being able to spend enough time with loved ones.”

With the search for balance being such a major part of their lives, Faz and Aarika have come to favour yoga as their fitness activity of choice. Yoga Movement, a short walk from the pair’s office, serves as their respite from the daily pressures of work and motherhood. Together, they take HIIT yoga classes (“prison yoga,” as Faz calls it) during their lunch breaks.

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Funnily enough, "prison yoga" has empowered the pair, despite the menacing nickname bestowed upon it by Faz. It has encouraged Faz and Aarika to hold each other accountable for their fitness goals, and the energy that the duo have gained from working out together continues to keep them going in their own lives. Although Faz and Aarika face heavy responsibilities as working mothers, they prove that working out doesn't have to be a lonely challenge, even if motherhood can sometimes be.

“Having time to work out and work on ourselves definitely makes us better parents, in terms of stamina, and emotional and mental capacity, too.” 

So, if working out as a mother might seem intimidating and like the last thing you want to do, take inspiration from Faz & Aarika. Grab a friend and head to the studio together — keep your body moving, and everything else will follow.