The parenting life is always busy, and for most parents, when they get busy, the first thing they kick out of their schedule is the time they spend caring for themselves. That includes working out on a regular basis.
As beautiful as it is to put your family first, your kids deserve a healthy parent. Sometimes it just takes a bit of creativity to find ways to work out while still caring for your kids. To help you reignite your health and fitness, we’re bringing you a few of our top tips for stay-at-home parents.
Get Your Kids Involved in the Workout
When you’re spending your day entertaining and engaging with your child, you don’t have to squeeze in a workout in between play sessions - you can combine them. The way you do this will vary based on how old your kids are.
You could wear your baby to use them as a weight while you go for a walk or do some squats or lunges. For toddlers, you could challenge them to races back and forth in the yard. Your kids will have fun, you’ll get a workout, and you’ll be instilling an appreciation for exercise at a young age.
Book Routine Workout Playdates with Other Families
Have neighbors or friends who are stay-at-home parents? Consider scheduling routine workout playdates. For example, twice a week, you can get together with three other families. Each time, one parent stays back and watches the kids while the other three go to the gym or take in another type of workout. Take turns and you’ll be getting in a workout or two every week.
Make Workout Clothes Your Daily Wardrobe
One of the challenges of working out as a stay-at-home parent is that any “free time” you have comes in little snippets - an hour here or half an hour there while kids are napping. It’s hard to find time to change into workout clothes and get ready, do your workout, and get cleaned up all in one go.
Instead, put on your workout clothes when you wake up. This way, you’re already dressed for a workout so it doesn’t take 20 minutes of prep before you can get started. Plus, it puts your mind in “exercise mode” so you’re more mentally prepared to work out at a moment’s notice.
Look for a Gym with Childcare
Many parents don’t realize how often gyms and fitness studios have childcare available. Shop around in your area to see which gyms have childcare available. Or, look for childcare centers that allow for short-term care and find a gym nearby so you can drop off your kids for an hour while you hit the gym.
Making Time for Your Fitness as a Full-Time Parent
There’s no doubt that it’s hard to find time to work out as a stay-at-home parent (or as a working parent, for that matter). With the tips above, you can give your kids the gift of a healthier parent and give yourself the fulfillment, energy, and confidence that comes from a fit body. For more tips, check out our Mommy and Me fitness program.