Thursday, February 19, 2015

Gimme 5 Series: 5 Ways for Busy Moms to Get a Workout In

I am so excited to have my dear friend (and unofficial personal trainer) Mandy Haag guest blogging today on a topic that seems to be an issue for so many mamas! Take it away, Mandy......

1. Put Yourself on the Calendar
We are the LAST person to get scheduled into the week’s events. Every weekend sit down and set times to workout through the week. Pre-planning gives you time to make adjustments and make it work! Make it known to yourself and to your family that these times are non-negotiable!
2. Pre-Plan Your Workouts
Now that you have your workout times blocked off on the calendar, get a little more detailed in your own personal planner. You can cut quite a bit of time and mental energy from your overall workout if you know before you even lace up the shoes what workout you’re about to do. I find this particularly helpful for early morning workouts. When I know that I’m going to be getting up before the sun to fit in my workout, because that’s the only time in the day that was available, the job is much easier when I pick out my clothes AND my workout the night before. Then all I have to do is stumble out of bed, pick those clothes up off the floor and press PLAY. No thinking required! So after you’ve blocked off your time on the family calendar, sit down and specifically write out which workouts you want to do on each day. And as you accomplish them….CROSS THEM OFF!! (Ahh yes.)

 3. Play Dates for Kids = Workout Dates for Moms
Kids love having time to play with their friends, and your workouts can be both more fun and more effective with a partner. It’s a win-win! Kids can be much less needy when they have some friends to play with, especially if they have this opportunity somewhat consistently. So pick someone’s house and a workout DVD or a park, the track, a stadium, pack up the kids and the toys and gett'er done.

 4. Think of it as Interval Training
As a mom we know that we don’t live in a perfect world. Because there, in that perfect world, every workout would be uninterrupted. Babies would get in their full naps as anticipated and the other children would play peacefully together and wouldn’t need help reaching their toys and drinks of water and to go to the bathroom during our workouts. But since we don’t live in that perfect world, we have to be mentally prepared for those interruptions. It doesn’t do anyone any good to get all huffy and frustrated when we’re needed. We are mom, after all. So think of it as interval training….high intensity/low intensity within the workout. The moments when the kids are content and the baby’s still sound asleep go at it pale male….all out. You truly don’t know how long that’s going to last. Then when someone needs their Cinderella dress zipped and the play-doh cup opened, you can take it down a notch and jog in place as you play mom for a second, secretly relieved for the chance to bring your heart rate back down. When you work out at home, know that these interruptions will happen. If we accept them ahead of time, we all win.

5. Know that part of taking care of them is taking care of YOU
No guilt. It’s hard as a mom to take time for ourselves. You have the most important job in the whole world. But if mom isn’t feeling well, doesn’t have enough energy, isn’t happy with herself, she can’t be the best possible mom and wife. You have to make your health and fitness a priority, it’s non-negotiable. And there isn’t room for any guilt in that.

Thank you, Mandy...and Macy & Molly too!
Yes, she is pregnant! She is 8 months pregnant and fit as can be, not letting anything slow her down! Such an inspiration!

For more fitness inspiration from a mom who KNOWS how it is, follow Mandy Haag: Health & Fitness on Facebook. 

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