One of the most common reasons we hear of why moms can’t get their workouts in, is because they don’t know what to do with their little ones. After all, not everyone is comfortable with or has access to a gym daycare program.
These are legitimate obstacles that moms, especially new moms, have to overcome. If they don’t have the proper support system or know where to look to overcome them, it seems as though there is no solution.
You don’t have to wait until the kids are in school to finally start working out and you don’t have to wait until nap time to get a workout in, though if you choose to do either of those then that's your prerogative! Today, we're going to be your source of information on how to get past these obstacles and get your workouts in even when you have little ones running around because it IS possible, it just takes a little creativity.
Hit The Park
Honestly, it doesn’t matter if your baby is six weeks or six years, the park is a great place to go just to get out of the house when the weather is nice. If you have toddlers, it’s a great place for your children to let off some steam too.
Forcing yourself outside into the fresh air not only boosts your mood and restores a bit of your sanity when you’ve been cooped up inside for quite a while (as is common when you’re a mom because it sometimes feels like there is not enough time in the day to even attempt to leave our humble abodes). So stop what you’re doing and grab the stroller and get to the park for a workout.
If your kids are old enough to play on the jungle gym and the park isn’t crowded, make use of the playground for your own workout with them. Exercises like step-ups, pull-ups, box jumps, the possibilities are seemingly endless with a jungle gym. The best part is you only have to use your bodyweight for a full and effective workout.
If you're little isn't quite old enough to take on the playground, don’t forget about the ability to take the stroller for a jog around the sidewalk, do walking lunges while pushing the stroller, hold it stationary and do squats and curtsy lunges and leg raises, stay next to the stroller for some crunches and push-ups (just make sure to lock the wheels in place or you're in for an unexpected cardio workout too.)
By the time your kids are done playing, your workout is done and you’ve killed two birds with one stone and your babies are hopefully worn out enough that when you get home they take a nice little nap and you’re able to get even more stuff done.
Mommy & Me BootCamps
These are nearly everywhere. A lot of the time they’re not advertised very well, but most cities have quite a few mommy meet-ups where you all gather as a group at a park with your babies and work out together. Search for the groups on Facebook, Meetup.com and, we can’t forget about trusty old Google.
You’ll find so many classes to choose from that are kid friendly. The drop in rate is usually inexpensive- between $5-$15 depending on how many classes you buy at a time, some offer free sessions for first-timers too. Not only can you make fellow fit mom friends (which is important because mom life can be a little lonely). By taking part in these bootcamps, you get a workout and socialization all in one session, which is all around good for your mental and physical health.
No, we don’t mean the kind you hold on your body after giving birth haha. We're talking about using your babies as weights.
No, not for anything crazy, but when your little one’s are small enough, there is a good chance you haven’t yet worked up to using super heavy weights and have been doing light weight or bodyweight exercises at home.
Why not step it up a notch, but bond with your baby at the same time? Ever notice that as your baby slowly gains weight, your arms hurt from holding them little by little?
It gives you all the more reason to strengthen your body. By using them as a weight you’re not only adding strength and muscle, but you’ll be adjusting your body to the changing weight of YOUR baby, talk about a personalized program.
Keep it fun and lighthearted. Exercises like holding the baby on either side of its torso and doing bicep curls and giving them a little kiss when they reach your face, or raising them above your head for a shoulder press which will make them feel like they’re flying, are great.
You can try lying on the ground and pushing them up and then bringing them back to your chest, which equates the movement of a bench press and you can lie them on the ground and do push-ups over them and make funny faces during them. Feel free to put them in a sling wrap or carrier that you wear and do some squats and lunges for a little added weight too.
These are just some examples, there are a ton of possibilities, just make sure the exercises you choose to do while holding your baby are safe. Exercises that affect and or require your balance are best to avoid while holding your baby.
Overall, your baby will likely love this time with you and look at it as “play” time which for them it is, but you also get your workout in and we just can’t get enough quality bonding time in with our babies can we?
Just because you’re not going all out in the gym does NOT mean you aren’t getting in an effective workout or making progress on your overall health. Especially as a new mom, just getting activity in period is key and as you get used to it and your schedule adjusts, you can increase duration and intensity.
Cardio isn’t always easy to get in when you have kids unless you have a jogging stroller or a treadmill at home, because you’re not always in the position to allow your kids to run with you. But who says you can’t get cardio in anyway?
Sure there are plenty of at-home workout video's you can do for cardio, but how can you make your cardio fun and impromptu with your little ones?
Well, one of our favorite things to do is have a random dance party. Just start jumping around and shimmying and shaking all over the room. You'll feel silly and happy and it'll actually kick your butt!
Cardio and playtime combined. Your kids will LOVE it!
Monkey See, Monkey Do
Depending on how old your child is, they’re likely to start copying everything you do.
When they see you start to squat, they squat. When they see you doing walking lunges, they'll attempt to do the same movement.
The possibilities are almost endless and kids are great at being spontaneously creative. It instills good habits with them and they'll hopefully not look at exercise as an obligation in the future, but rather something they enjoy and want to do regularly.
If you jump, they jump. It’s just a normal stage of their growth, but it’s an amazing opportunity to incorporate them into your lifestyle, to teach them and let them be a part of something healthy from the very early stages of their life. It will only benefit them down the line.
The possibilities are there, you just have to look for them. Seeing the smiles and excitement on your child's face when they get to workout with you is priceless.
By the way, moms LOVE our silicone wedding bands, not only do you not have to worry about ruining your diamond ring during a workout, but you don't have to worry about accidentally scratching your child with it or getting it dirty when dealing with all sorts of messes that all of us mom's have to clean up at one point or another.