How to squeeze in exercise at home and have fun!
You are a busy workin’ lady who manages to balance a career, a baby (or lots of babies!), and run a home! You. Are. Superwoman. But, even Superwoman struggles to find time to do all the things, like exercise at home.
How does exercise fit into this equation? This may be a question you’ve asked yourself.
When you are spinning so many plates, it can be hard to prioritize your own health and well-being. But unless you want those plates to come crashing down around you, healthy habits need to happen.
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How does a busy working mom find time in her day to exercise at home?
Here are some tips to help you get going.
Let’s begin the fun with a little vacay analogy, shall we?
Road trips are fun, amirite!? But, unless you have a destination in mind, you’ll never hear those three little words.
You. Have. Arrived.
I’m sure, like most people (including me!), you enjoy taking the scenic route.
But that joy ride can turn scary in a hurry when you take a wrong turn and run outta gas in the middle of nowhere.
Then, stuck on some creepy backroad with your thumb in the air, you’re seriously regretting that laissez-faire lease on life you once mistook for spontaneity and freedom.
That’s why with fitness, as with everything else in life, it’s important to set goals. Not just any goals though. SMART goals. Goals that include some exercise at home, as well as fun time!
SMART goals are goals that are specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, and time-bound.
Just like you plug that specific address into Google Maps (or are you a Wazer? I’m a Google Maps girl, myself!) and queue up that new audiobook before hitting the road, you’ve gotta know what your fitness goals are.
But, I’m not talking loosey-goosey goals here like, “be more active”, “exercise at home”, “lose weight”, or “feel better”.
Sure! Those are all great ideas. But they are the natural byproducts of achieving these SMART goals we’re talking about.
You’ve got your sunglasses on, coffee in hand, and hair in the wind. It’s time to hit the road, Jack! (Or Jane, as it were.)
Google Maps (or Waze, whatever floats your boat) is going to tell you that you’ve got “X” number of miles to your destination.
This is good information.
This helps you see the big picture so you can plan out your stops for bathroom breaks and meals.
In the same way, setting a goal that is measurable lets you break it down step by step so you can chip away at it just a little bit at a time.
Road trip rookies are NOT best served driving coast to coast on their very first time out. I mean, you can do it, but it’s gonna be hard as heck.
No. It’s best to set a goal that, while keeping you inspired, isn’t gonna be so gargantuan you give up from the get go.
Start small. Take a day trip. Even a weekend getaway is fine.
Challenge yourself, but pick something you know you can achieve. It’s ok to go for the easy win here. As time goes on and you get to be a goal-setting pro, then you can up the stakes a little.
Obvs this is important.
Would you set out for NYC if what you really wanted was a quiet weekend spent at a cabin in the woods?
I don’t think so.
Your goal needs to be relevant to what you hope to achieve.
When this mom’s sanity is hanging on by a thread and a vacation needs to happen (STAT!), do you think it’s going to do me any good to plan a weekend away for 5 years from now?
A destination vow renewal? Maybe. A year-long trip across all 50 states? Possibly. But a spring break jaunt just to give our family a breather from the end-of-school crazy? No!
That’s what we call a short-term goal.
It’s ok (better than ok!) to have big dreams! But like I said above, it’s also ok to start small.
You need to see results from your consistent efforts, and you need to see them pronto. Those results are going to propel you forward and keep you moving.
7 tips and tricks to fit exercise at home into your busy day.
Before we begin, I want to share this video I found on how to exercise at home when you have toddlers. She’s got some great pointers!
1. Small steps add up to BIG results
What does this mean? It literally means that taking small steps (or any steps) is going to keep you on the right track to hitting those SMART fitness goals you just set.
I’ve found the best way to measure success here is by using a fitness tracker or tracking app (Google Fit is my fave!) of some sort.
Once you are outfitted with your fitness tracker of choice, it’s time to start adding those extra steps into your day?
Take the stairs instead of the elevator. Walk instead of drive. Quit trying to park so close to the door at the grocery store and opt for a spot further away.
It’s the culmination of these small steps (literally and figuratively) that, in the end, add up to a healthier you.
2. Pick up that cute new accessory- your baby!!
Crazy lady say what?!?
I’ll tell you!
Babywearing has become a popular trend lately.
Though it was born out of necessity eons ago, moms are now realizing the importance of keeping baby close. Because of this, the practice has been regaining steam in recent years.
And while I’m 100% on board with all the benefits babywearing offers your precious bundle, oftentimes moms don’t realize the perks in it for them as well.
Bottom line, with a baby strapped to your body, you are burning more calories and your hands are free for whatever else needs doing.
3. If you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em.
Your kiddos, that is.
Get in on that game of tag at the park. Hop up and join in when they start a game of hide-and-seek.
You are making memories with your munchkins AND moving your body. What could be better?
4. Make your multi-tasking count.
I know we’ve all heard it said in recent years that multi-tasking isn’t really a thing.
This is true. You really are not being effective if you are constantly shifting your focus from one thing to another.
But as moms, we all know that life isn’t perfect and sometimes our attention has to be in multiple places at once.
How can we make this work in our favor?
You find tasks that pair well with exercise and multi-task in a way that is actually productive.
Queue up that engaging podcast during your quick workout in the morning. Listen to an audiobook on your afternoon jog. Get a standing desk (or just work standing up at your kitchen counter).
Find ways to be active while tackling that to-do list. You’ve got this!
5. Binge watch while you burn (calories, that is).
What if you could fit in a whole exercise program while you catch up on all your prime time faves?
That’s totally doable!
You have plenty of options here.
Good ole cable TV hasn’t quite gone the way of the dinosaurs yet. And…it still has commercials.
Take advantage! You can use that time to do planks, squats, or even jog in place. It’s possible to fit a whole body workout in while just watching one or two episodes!
If ad-free is more your jam, you could park your exercise machine in front of the TV. Tube time turns into treadmill time!
6. Exercise WITH your kids.
This tip is important for two reasons.
One, it’s important to show up for yourself each day, whether you have kid-free time or not.
Two, it’s imperative that your kids see that taking care of their health is important.
Pop on a yoga video, grab your yoga mat and let your little ones join in. Take a family bike ride after dinner. Get out in the yard and play catch.
It doesn’t need to be complicated. Just get everyone’s bodies moving. It’s so simple to find ways to exercise at home while including your kids and having fun!
7. Bottom line, if it’s not a priority, it won’t happen.
Just like anything else in life, consistency is key to hitting those goals and seeing results. If you really want to exercise at home you must stay laser focused on that goal.
There is no secret sauce.
Dedication, hard work, and showing up every single day…that’s it.
How to stay fit and healthy-making exercise at home a priority
I get that the struggle is real. Balance. Life. Family. Where does your health fit in to all of this? It’s so important that you take time for you.
Staying fit and healthy isn’t just a vanity thing. If you don’t feel healthy not only do you suffer but your family suffers too.
If you don’t have time for the gym, like many of us, you must make it a priority to exercise at home, some way, shape or form.
If you really want to exercise at home, it’s all up to you Mama.
You want to crush those career goals. You want to rock it out at raising babies. You wanna wallop those workouts.
I get it. I do.
It’s all a matter of choice. Set the goals. Take the steps. See success. You’ll get there.
You’re Superwoman, remember?
Now, share in the comments below your fave fitness tips for work-from-home mamas like you!
Amy Thetford is a freelance writer and mom to her tribe of tiny humans. When she’s not soaking up their snuggles or schlepping them from one activity to the next, you can find her chatting away about all things motherhood at www.realtalkwithamy.com