Exercise: How to Fit Fitness Into Your Day
Let's face it, we may have 24 hours in a day but by the time we tend to the kids, the house, the errands, and the career, there's not much time or energy left for us, is there?
One thing I've heard countless times from other moms is how they don't take time for themselves because it should always be about the children. Though I agree that our kids are our main priority, I think there is a tragic misconception about how we define that concept. I honestly believe that part of what makes me a good mom is that I make the effort to get some "me time." I need the stress relief being active gives me and I've found a method that allows me to exercise several times a week, guilt-free while still making my kids my priority.
How to Fit In Fitness
Here are my top 5 tips for fitting in your fitness:
1. Define Your Goals
This doesn't have to be a huge lofty goal, like running a marathon. Start small if you need to, but be specific (i.e. I want to workout 3 times a week for 30 minutes).
2. Make a Plan
Define how you want to accomplish your goal. Identify your options ("I can wake up 30 minutes before the kids do," "I can workout after they go to bed," "I will try some DVD's so I can workout without leaving the house," etc).
3. Make a Back-Up Plan
Life with kids is never black and white, so come up with an alternative plan in case something comes up. Did you plan to run but your partner is working late? Have a cardio DVD on standby to do at home while the kids cheer you on or join in. Babysitter cancel? Take the kids to the park and do a circuit while they're running around. Or better yet, get other moms to join you and take turns watching the kids and doing a circuit.
4. Be Resourceful
Sites like Pinterest aren't just for DIY crafts and funny pictures of dogs. I have a fitness board where I have a variety of different workouts pinned. On days when my time is limited or my Plan A and B have both fallen through, I can easily and quickly find a workout to do at home, with minimal equipment and with the kids right beside me.
5. Stay Positive
There will be times when, in spite of your best efforts, you won't workout. Whether it's Plans A thru Z going up in smoke, being exhausted after being up all night with sick kids or the dreaded lack of motivation, keep your chin up. Remember that each new day is a fresh start and your goals don't evaporate just because your workout did.
It's important to remember that we need to take care of ourselves so we can better take care of our families. We're not only our kids greatest advocates, we're also their greatest role models. Model the life you want for them and they will never be more than a step behind.
Do you work out? When do you fit exercise into your busy schedule?
Stephanie is a Canadian mom of 2 boys, aged 2.5 and 6 months. She is a runner, aspiring triathlete, coffee lover, and self-proclaimed reeker of awesomeness. She chronicles her journey of health and fitness at Fit Mom in Training. When she is not training for her second half marathon or chasing after her kids, Stephanie loves to connect with other moms and health enthusiasts on Twitter and Facebook. Stephanie is currently an Ambassador with FitFluential and FitApproach and has been named a Fit Blogger to Watch in 2012.