As a parent, squeezing in a fitness session can feel near impossible. How are you supposed to find time to work out when you can’t even shower without being disturbed?
Between caring for a baby, workplace demands and household chores, there is often little to no time to exercise.
The trick is to motivate yourself, set a goal and just do it. No excuses. I make the time to work out. Even if its ten minutes. Remember, ten minutes here and there is better than nothing. By doing activities that work with my schedule and lifestyle, my family and I are able to exercise together.
Here are my top tips for making exercise a reality. Trust me, it can be done.
- Lock it in
Set aside a specific time in your calendar and make it non-negotiable. By doing this, it will feel more like an appointment you have to keep. Ask yourself, if it was a doctors appointment, would you miss it?
- Have a plan
There is nothing worse than committing to a fitness session and spending half the time figuring out what to do. Create a plan before you workout. The less time you spend wondering what to do, the more time you spend getting them gains!
- Work out at home
Can’t be bothered going to the gym? Don’t want to run in the rain? If you aren’t living under a rock, you should know that fitness DVDs exist. If you don’t own a fitness DVD, jump on YouTube. There are plenty of body weight exercises that you can do anywhere.
- Include your kids
If you have older children, get them outside with you. Have fun and push each other. Have a baby? Grab the pram and go for a run or walk. Remember, as parents we are role models. If your children see you living a healthy and active lifestyle, chances are they’ll do the same.
- The playground is your gym
Take the kids to the park. While they play, you can work out. Use the monkey bars to do pull ups. Find a bench to do tricep dips. Be creative and use what’s in front of you. Seriously, it’s free fitness equipment.
- Treat your kids
Make sure to reward your children for helping you with your fitness goals. If there is a park on your running course, make sure to stop and let them play. If its a hot day, treat the family to an ice-cream at the end of the session. Kids are more willing to participate with minimal complaining when there is something in it for them.
- Mix it up
Find and do different fitness activities so you don’t get bored. Go for a swim or a bike ride. Join a boxing class. Grab some cones and do some agility exercises. The options are endless.
- Build a support crew
Talk to your family and friends. Juggling the responsibilities of family, work and life can feel overwhelming, but you’re not alone. Ask for help when you need it. Have a family member or friend join you to work out, or ask if they would be happy to watch your child for an hour so you can attend a class.
- Make it worth it
At the end of the day, your family is always a priority. If you have committed to a fitness session over spending time with your loved ones, make sure you’re pushing yourself the entire time.
- Don’t Beat Yourself Up
Let’s face it, life happens. There will be days that working out is last on your priority list. If you do miss a day, don’t stress. There’s always tomorrow.
Fitting fitness into a busy schedule is difficult and often exercise is the first thing to get removed from the calendar. But, with a little planning, it’s doable. Remember, if you are happy and healthy, your family will benefit from it.