Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Exercise & The Busy Mom

Whether you are a stay-at-home mom or a working mom, finding time to take care of yourself is hard.  Stay at home mom's are usually working off of one income which makes gym memberships a financial burden.  Working moms like myself tend to feel guilty about spending time away from their kids.  Exercise is so important to add to our routine for ourselves and our families.  I know I want to live a healthy life to be around for my kids for many years to come.  I also want to raise my children to live healthy lives.  Being active gives me the energy to have fun with my kids.

Being a mommy is a non-stop unpredictable job!  You never know what the day will hold.  I know for me when my kids are awake I barely have five minutes to myself.  So how do you find the time to exercise?  I want to share with you 4 tips that have worked for me.

1.  Get your exercise done when the kids are sleeping.

The most efficient workout I have is early in the morning before the kids our up.  Getting up just 30 minutes before the kids gives me time to get my workout done with no interruptions.  I normally set my alarm for 5:00 a.m., an hour before my kids wake up.   That gives me 30 minutes of devotion while waking up with my pre-workout drink and 30 minutes of exercise.  For you it may be during nap time or after the kids or sleeping.  I know it's not always easy to get up earlier when you are going on so little sleep already.  You will find though that working out gives you an energy you didn't have before.  You may find it easier to get your workout done during nap time or after you put the kids to bed.  I also have had my husband help out in the evenings.  I have him do bath time giving me time to exercise.  It's easier to stay focused and complete your workout without hearing "Mommy, I need you!" every five minutes.

2.  Entertain your kids with a special activity or toy.

As we all know kids are unpredictable and they may decide to wake up early or not take a nap.  Most popular workouts are 30 minutes or less.  It's not too hard to find something to keep your kids occupied for 30 minutes.   With my three year old I usually put her favorite program on the iPad along with giving her a snack.  Otherwise I like to pull out an activity that she doesn't do often to keep her occupied.  Play-doh works great to keep her busy.  Giving her a craft she can do herself or even just coloring.  My youngest is only 8 months old.  As an infant he would just lay and watch me.  He then progressed to a bouncy seat where he enjoyed just laughing at me.  Apparently my jumping jacks and burpees are pretty hilarious.  Now that he has started crawling and getting into everything, I set up an area with some toys to occupy him.  As you can see in my pictures, that doesn't ALWAYS work too well either!  He is fascinated these days by my hot pink sneakers.  So now I get him in his walker with a snack so he isn't crawling around me.  Every kid depending on age and interest will differ.

The important thing is to find what works for your child.  For some just watching mommy jump around is enough entertainment.  Build this time into your routine. Your children will expect to see you workout everyday.  My three year old knows by the end of her favorite program I will be done.  "Most" of the time she lets me!  You are setting a great example for them.

3.  Let your kids workout with you.

My three year old loves to copy the trainers on TV.  We have a great time working out together.  I even purchased her a pair of 1 lb. dumbbells to use.  She loves to copy me and Shaun T.  Older children can be an even better workout partner.  Make it a family activity and get everyone involved.  Go for a run or walk with your children.  You can push them in the stroller or have them ride along beside you.

4.  Utilize your children's energy to your advantage.

We all know children are FULL of energy.  Take them for walks, play dates, and play sports with them.  A game of tag will help you burn calories and make precious memories with your children!  Once the warmer weather hits I love to dust off my jogging stroller.  I run the kids to the park as often as I can.  I get my exercise in on the way there and when I get there.  I don't just sit on the bench playing with my phone.  I use the monkey bars and do pull-ups.  I run up and down the playground with my little girl.  She gets her energy out which is a must for a peaceful evening and I get my exercise in.

Jumping always gets some giggles!

"I am coming to get you Mom!"

"Need some extra weight resistance?"
Exercising doesn't mean you have to pay costly gym memberships.  You don't have to spend hours in the gym away from your kids.  Don't let your children be your excuse to live an unhealthy life.  Taking care of them means taking care of yourself and teaching them a healthy lifestyle.

I would love to help you reach your health and fitness goals.  CLICK here to send me an email and tell me your goals.