Being a mom is a job and a half. Add that to the fact that most moms need to work to help support their families. With those considerations, fitting in time to exercise seems laughable.
Yet, according to the American Psychological Association, exercise can play a key role in mood improvement. So, not only do you deserve a healthy life, but your family can benefit from you enjoying better moods. To help working moms find time to exercise, here are 10 ideas to start implementing today.
1 – Hit Exercise First
I don’t know about you, but I have never finished a long day of work and parenting and thought, “Oh boy! Time to exercise!” If you find you are often drained by the end of the day, then you may need to put your workout at the start of the day.
Starting an early morning workout routine can be tiring. But if you give yourself time to adjust to the change, you will find you have much more energy as you go about your day.
2 – Stick To A Workout Schedule
Waiting until it is time for your workout is a really good way to waste exercise time. For busy working moms, the clock is ticking when it comes to your workout time. While my kids don’t often interrupt my 4 am workouts, it has happened. So, it is best that you have a workout schedule. Some workout schedule ideas are:
- List workout days – Mark on a physical calendar what days are workout days. That way, you can easily see what days you need to exercise. To make it more effective, write what workout you are doing that day.
- Use a pre-made plan – I’m mostly a runner, so I like following running training schedules. Whether you like pilates or cycling, you likely can find a workout plan to follow.
- Work with a personal trainer – Some personal trainers offer to make custom workout plans to suit your abilities. If you have special restrictions, it may be worth it to have an exercise plan designed for you.
3 – Work Toward Workout Milestones
Along with a solid workout plan, you need milestones to work toward. Whether you just want to get in shape or want to do your first triathlon, you need to set goals. With firm workout milestones to work toward, your daily exercises will have more purpose.
4 – Lay Out Exercise Gear
Ever dug through the laundry basket looking for your workout clothes? I sure have. No matter what time of day you workout, hunting for your gear isn’t ideal. To avoid struggling to find everything, lay out your exercise gear the day before you exercise. That way, all you need to do is change and hit the ground running.
5 – Involve The Kids
Exercise doesn’t have to be an isolated event. With my two boys, I like to involve them in some of my workouts. One of our favorite family activities is working out at our local park. There are a bunch of exercises you can do at the park and set a good example for your children. It’s also incredibly adorable to watch children try to follow along with the workout.
6 – Choose Enjoyable Exercises
You shouldn’t dread exercise time. If you do, it means those exercises don’t appeal to you, and you should switch gears.
If you hate running, don’t do it, no matter how many calories it burns. If yoga and nature walks bring you joy, stick to those exercises. The most important part of a workout is simply doing it, so try different exercises and find what makes you happy.
7 – Break Up Workout Times
Let’s face it, as a working mom, you may not have a solid 45-minutes to an hour to exercise. But with some ingenuity, you should be able to break up your workouts into multiple, manageable chunks.
For example, say you do a quick, 15-minute fat burning HIIT workout. Then, during your lunch break, you take a 20-minute walk. Once you’re home, try to have some active playtime with your kids, then unwind later by walking on the treadmill while binging your favorite show.
It may take some more creativity to find time for multiple workouts, but with practice, you can stay more active.
8 – Ditch The Car When Possible
Cars are a part of normal adult life, but I don’t think we need them as much as we use them. If you want to find some natural time to exercise, review your schedule and find times to go carless.
A trick I still employ is biking to the grocery store with my kid trailer attached to my bike. It gives me a little more exercise, and my youngest son loves to come and “protect the groceries” for me.
9 – Build Up Exercise Support Team
As working moms have a lot of demands on their time, it’s important to have a team of exercise supporters. There will be times where my mom steps in so that my husband can go on a long run with me. At other times, my husband intercepts and helps our boys while I exercise. Whatever your parenting situation, find those who support your exercise goals.
10 – Take Deliberate Rest Days
While parenting is a 24/7 gig, exercise doesn’t have to be. Rest is an important part of building up your overall health. So, you should plan deliberate rest days. Avoid taking unscheduled rest days, as it can turn into months of “rest days” and “I’ll restart tomorrow/next week.”
Whether you are working to get your pre-baby body back or just want to feel better overall, by implementing these tips, you should be able to find at least little time to exercise.
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