Wednesday, June 13, 2012

How can a mom find time for fitness?

My days used to be so predictable. And then I had a baby. No, I'm not complaining. Just observing. We stick to a somewhat decent schedule 'round here, but for every five days on, well...there is inevitably one or two decidedly off. Like today. I think we're gearing up for or in the midst of another round of tooth-poppin' fun. Hannah woke up a few times last night, which she never does. Her nose has been running and she's been shoving her fist into her mouth like it's a cherry sucker or something. She did all of this just before the dawn of her two bottom teeth, which is why I think we're about to see more where they came from.

Needless to say, my up-and-down night left me way too exhausted for an early morning session of HIIT. I would have been a zombie, and one cannot be a zombie in the presence of a five-month bundle of joy. So, yeah...I shelved it for later, figuring I could sneak it in during her nap. Like, outside in the backyard or in the basement or something. And then she had a tough time falling asleep, so I spent a most of what should have been her three-hour nap trying to console her.

And then she fell asleep. It was 4:30.

I took the monitor outside and set up a nice little backyard gym, which consisted of nothing more than my yoga mat on a beach towel—I was determined to get in that session of HIIT I gave up this morning.

It was a slightly overcast day with a cool breeze in the air, evident by the flapping Post-it Note on the corner of my mat. And yet, I still managed to sweat balls because of this lineup:

Single-leg burpees are hard. And completely awesome.

I managed to make it through just three of the four circuit repetitions, but I'm totally OK with it. I still managed to find 30 minutes during which I could move this here mommy body. As the day moved on, I started to see that opportunity slipping away from me. In the end, it might not have been the best workout of my life, but it was a workout nonetheless.

How can a mom find time for fitness?

1) Plan ahead and be open to squeezing it in whenever and wherever. Sometimes you just gotta drop and give yourself ten when you can. The dishes can wait.

2) Enlist daddy's help. My husband always feeds Hannah a bottle before she goes to bed. This gives me a solid 45 minutes of me-time during which I typically go for a run. (Today, I would have done the HIIT circuit above had I not gotten her to go down this afternoon.)

3) Bring baby with you! In a running stroller, perhaps. Or in a regular stroller—remember, there's nothing wrong with a solid power walk.

4) Join a gym that has a nursery. They'll take good care of your peanut, and you shouldn't feel guilty about leaving her/him in there so that you can exercise. Baby won't forget about you in the time it takes you to run a few miles or lift a few weights.

5) Consider morning workouts. Go when the husband is home, while Baby is still sleeping. Get it over with so that any schedule-related monkey wrenches don't wreak havoc on your fitness for the day.

Most importantly, know that if a day goes by during which you truly cannot find the time for fitness...know that it's OK. If you live an active life, full of healthy eating and fitness fun, missing one day of your typical workouts isn't going to send you back to the starting line. It's all worth it for that precious bundle of joy, right? And you'll pick up right where you left off during the next day.

Speaking of days. You know what today is, right? Wednesday, which means:


Sensible snacking is all the rage in the health and fitness world. In any world, really. Snacks go bad for you so quickly if you aren't smart about them. I snack on a lot of Greek yogurt. Oikos was on sale this week, so I picked up a few cartons which leads me to the best snack I've had so far this week:

Half a mango with a handful of blueberries atop some vanilla Oikos Greek yogurt. Total party in my mouth, I swear. Also good, but not as good, was the apple with peanut butter. Quite refreshing, but not filling: The iced coffee with a splash of chocolate milk. And, of course, I'm still making my way through the pumpkin bars I bought at Trader Joe's. 

Anyways. Also today: Another shipment from the CSA.

More lettuce, strawberries and radishes. Hello, lovely cherries! And another bunch of bok choy. Hey-OH do I have a good bok choy recipe for you. Coming soon, I promise.

Question: What did you snack on today? If you're a mom, how do you make time for fitness?


Michelle said...

Thanks for this!  I'm already wondering how I'm going to fit in exercise once the baby comes.  My parents have offered to come by once or twice a week after work so I'm hoping I can take that time for myself and squeeze a run in.  That is if I'm not completely exhausted and decide to take a nap instead...

adailydoseoffit said...

Naps are important...but remember, exercise can be energizing, too. You'll figure it out. Might take a few weeks, but you will.

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