Finding time to exercise is tough for anyone, but especially for new moms. However, it’s important to make fitness a priority. Moving around and getting in shape will make you feel better, and a happy family starts with a happy mom. If you can squeeze in a 30-minute workout — maybe while your baby is napping or your spouse or a friend looks after your little one — it'll help you fend off stress, burn extra calories, and boost your spirits. Follow these tips (after you consult a physician to make sure you're cleared for activity, of course!) for making regular exercise a part of your busy life.
Break It Up
Working out at least 30 minutes three days a week is recommended by many experts. The good news is you can break your half-hour routine into smaller increments and still see benefits. Try for two 15-minute or three 10-minute sessions each day. If you can't block out that much time, then work fitness into your daily routine as much and as often as you can and watch it add up.
Pencil It In
Schedule time for exercise in the family calendar, and then treat it like an important appointment.
Why not make family time an active time? Instead of vegging out in front of the TV at the end of the day, head outside for a walk. Most babies love a nice stroller ride and it’s a win-win for both you and your baby.
Get Fit First Thing
Set your alarm clock 15 to 30 minutes earlier than you normally do and enjoy a short workout before the rest of the family starts the day.
Make Healthier Choices
Climb stairs instead of taking elevators or escalators. Don’t take the closest parking spot. Park farther away so you can get in those extra steps. If you live close enough to your bank, grocery store, or dry cleaner, leave your car at home and do your small errands on foot.
Turn Chores Into a Workout
Shopping for groceries or holiday gifts? Walk a few laps around the supermarket or the mall before grabbing what you need. Do at least some housework and yard work yourself instead of hiring someone. To make your mall walking or chore more interesting, time yourself and see if you can beat your best!
Make the Most of TV Time
Do crunches or run in place while you watch your favorite shows. Lift hand weights. Stretch. Do jumping jacks or planks during commercials. Your baby will think you are silly, and if you're lucky you'll get a smile or even a laugh. Any movement counts, even if it's just getting off the couch to change channels or turn up the volume.
Work Out at Work
If you’re back in the office, replace coffee breaks with fitness breaks and walk around the office or climb the stairs between floors. Stand and move while you talk on the phone. Conduct small meetings while enjoying a brisk walk.
The hardest part of working out is often mustering up the motivation to do it — and stay doing it. But if you use these tips, you may just find yourself making a habit of being healthy.