5 minutes for Mom: Tips for Making Time for Exercise
Being a mom is already the ultimate workout, so who has extra time for exercise? The truth is, while taking care of kids, a husband and a home is a full-time job and then some, it’s still very important to make time to take care of your body. Exercise and fitness are essential for good health, inside and out, and if you’re happy with how you look and feel, that positive attitude will carry over to every part of your life. Take a look at your daily routine, set realistic goals, make time for exercise – and get moving!
Make Time for Exercise at Home
It’s great if you have the time to get to the gym regularly, but you don’t have to leave the house and spend an hour at the gym every day in order to make exercise part of your day-to-day life. Spend a few minutes stretching just before or after taking your morning shower. Jog in place while waiting for your coffee to brew. Cleaning house isn’t exactly an aerobic workout, but if you put a little extra effort, both you and your home will benefit. Watching your favorite TV show? Don’t be a passive viewer: use the time to do some floor exercises. Buy a set of hand weights, keep them handy, and you can do upper body work as well. During commercials, try situps, running in place or other more strenuous exercises.
Make Time for Exercise Morning, Noon or Night
If you can, set aside some time for exercise either first thing in the morning or at night after the kids are asleep – nap and homework time can also be good opportunities. You don’t need more than about half an hour a day to see positive results in just a short while. If you can afford it and have the space at home, think about buying a treadmill or stationary bicycle. That way you’ll be able to get in some exercise whenever you’ve got a few minutes to spare. If money is an issue, find a daily exercise program on television that appeals to you. Or buy a few exercise DVDs – if you have a variety to choose from, you’re less likely to get bored and give up. If your children are old enough, have them follow along – you’re setting a healthy example for them, and it’s never too early to start making exercise a regular habit!
Make Time for Exercise Indoors and Out
Buy a pedometer, put it on first thing in the morning, and try to walk 10,000 steps every day. If you live in an apartment building, consider walking up to your floor instead of taking the elevator, which will be good exercise for both your heart and legs. The next time you go to a shopping mall, spend an extra half hour taking a power walk. Go for a 20-minute walk after dinner; in addition to getting exercise and fresh air, this could be a good opportunity for quality family time. Phone a friend and make a commitment to walk together once or twice each week. If there’s no one to walk with, get a book on tape and listen while you walk. Instead of driving to local errands, put on your walking shoes and hit the road. If you have a yard, get out there and start digging! Tending to a garden can be strenuous exercise. As an added bonus, you’re outside, getting fresh air – and think about planting some vegetables, so you’ll have healthy things to eat to complement your exercise regimen.