One of the challenges of motherhood is finding time to exercise. Yes I’ve got a good upper body workout just by lifting and carrying my baby girl around – who is now weighing about 18 pounds! But nothing is like taking a yoga class or going for a good run. Something I really miss!
So how can you get a full-fledged, non-child related workout as a parent? This is a question that’s been on the back of my mind for the past few months. Interestingly, without me even asking, a friend of mine shared a few tips as if she read my mind:
Work Out a Trade
You are not alone when it comes to struggling to carve out time to exercise while caring for your child or children. Look closely at other parents in your neighborhood or social groups to see whether there might be someone who’s interested in working out a trade with you. Then, alternate days when one of you can watch both families’ kids while the other parent gets some much-needed time for working out. If you find multiple interested parties, you can even create a co-op where members can earn credit for babysitting that they can later “cash in” for time at the gym.
It is getting easier nowadays to locate gyms with kid care as the popularity of kids’ clubs increases within the industry. For example California based gym In-Shape, offers members childcare with certified staff. Health clubs understand that not all of their members are childfree and that they are more likely to sign these folks up for longer, more extensive memberships if they are given the opportunity to workout without having to locate childcare for a trip to the facility. Integrating the two offers parents a respite from the daily grind by getting into the gym and working off steam, knowing their little ones are being looked after nearby in a safe, healthy environment.
Do you have a family member who is constantly asking for time with your little ones? You might worry that you are imposing but chances are, if they are asking, then they probably wouldn’t mind to babysit. Take advantage of having family close by and let your child or children have personal time with their grandparents or other relatives. If you aren’t sure they are up to the challenge, start off in small increments or have the family member stay at your home where routines are easier to stick to while you get in a run or a quick class. An uninterrupted 20 minute workout session can be beneficial to your health, on both a physical and mental level.
These are some excellent suggestions. It got me thinking! Yes it may take a little investigating and scheduling at the beginning, but I think the payoff is totally worthwhile. Being the Chief Harmony Officer at CycleHarmony.com, I know how important regular exercise is to our overall health and well-being. Now it’s time to make it happen as I really can’t wait to reestablish a workout routine that I can count on as a new mother!