Carving out time for fitness is tough, and if you’re a mom, it might seem close to impossible. No matter what you prefer – jogging, swimming or an exercise bike, it is an arduous task to balance work, kids, home and fitness all in one day. Motherhood is no reason not to eat and live healthy, however. Exercise is not complex. Just a few minutes here and there is all you need.
Get the Most out of 10 Minutes
Many don’t realize that exercise is cumulative. Working out in 10 minutes sessions is beneficial as long as you rev up the intensity. If you were to measure intensity on a scale of one to 10, you want shorter 10-minute bursts to reach at least a seven. You can jump rope, jog in place or ride your exercise bike at a high-speed. Try to do at least four sessions with two focusing on aerobics, five times a week. You can also do four aerobic sessions one day and then four strength-building 10-minute routines the next.
Use What You Have Around
If pulling the weight bench or treadmill out takes too much time, use what you have on hand for short workouts. Something as basic as a kitchen chair can be an effective exercise tool. Stand in front of the chair with your arms raised to chest height and your feet planted square with your hips. Slowly lower towards the chair but stop just before you sit. Hold this position for three to five seconds and then stand back up. Repeat the exercise for 12 repetitions.
As you walk past the couch towards the laundry room or kitchen, place your palms down on the arm and slide your legs out in front. Use the couch as an anchor to do eight to 12 triceps push-ups. Bend your arms slowly to lower towards the floor just a few inches than press back up to the starting position. You just accomplished a mini workout while doing chores around the house.
Go for a run with the baby in a jogging stroller or a fast walk pulling the kids in a wagon. This gets you moving and gets the little ones some fresh air all at the same time. When you go to the park, take advantage of the jungle gym and do pull-ups while the kids play. You can keep an eye on them and get strong at the same time.
Take a Day Class
If the kids go to school or are old enough for daycare, take advantage of that free time. Pick a class that starts just after you drop them off. This will not take up much of your day. If you work while the kids are in school, take a lunch time session.
Moms with children too young for school can look around the neighborhood for a fitness center with childcare or mommy classes. Swap time babysitting time with a friend. You go to the gym one day and babysit the next to give her free time.
Exercise is a critical part of staying healthy. Most activities give you some opportunity for a workout; you just need to use your imagination. For example, lift the grocery bags like weights while you are walking to the car. When you are cleaning, pick-up the speed and increase your heart rate. Exercise does not have to be structured or boring. Sit down, make a list of your daily tasks and think about ways to make them work for you instead how much time they take up. The fitness minutes will add up faster than you think.
About the Author: Maire frequently works out during her daily work routine. She has even taken up a natural diet to complement her exercise. When she isn’t doing pull ups or sit ups, she blogs on behalf of Sears and other brand she loves.