Thursday, September 1, 2011

Fitness Tip #4: Ignore or Invite

One of the biggest excuses I hear from moms for NOT working out is that they feel like working out with kids in tow is an impossible task. In fact, I use to be one of those moms until I realized that my kids are ALWAYS in tow, and thus, I would ALWAYS be overweight and unhealthy unless I could find a way to workout when they are with me. 

As I mentioned before, getting a double stroller has really helped in that department. However, I realize that running is not for everyone, so a fancy new stroller might not work for you. You might be the kind of person that HAS to workout in a gym. If that is the case, then you probably have childcare covered and timing is more of your problem. But if you frequently have to workout by putting on a DVD and following along... things can get tricky!

 (Please excuse my awesome workout hair and clothes... and face... YIKES!)

For instance, I try to get up before my kids every Sunday morning to fit in a little Yoga via DVD, but occasionally the girls decide to rise with the birds and manage to find me in the middle of a pose. This ALWAYS leads to them giggling, crawling, and jumping all over me! It use to drive me CRAZY and I felt like I was getting nothing out of my workout. But then I realized if I could just IGNORE my frustrations (not necessarily my children) and focus on the moves, I could get MORE out of exercising than normal!

I mean, have you ever tried stretching or doing crunches with an 18 month old on your back or belly? Or lunges and squats with a baby in your arms? It takes a lot of extra muscle to work through that! 

Don't get me wrong, I still TRY to workout when my girls are sleeping, but if that just can't happen I don't let it stop me from exercising that day. I simply put in my video and try to ignore the excess weight and bouncing that's happening all over my body. The good news is that your kids eventually get bored of you not reacting to them, so the pestering usually stops after ten minutes. And better yet, allowing your kids to be with you when you workout TOTALLY counts as extra playtime with mommy!

If you have older kids, your problem might be more along the lines of constant questioning, tattling, or requests. I've struggled with those things with Brooklyn and eventually had to tell her that there is a bubble around mommy when I'm working out and that I can't hear her and she can't come in it until I'm done. (Unless I am standing very still with my legs apart like a bridge... because she can't resist going under the bridge!) 

Brooklyn is now doing a really good job respecting my space and has recently started to join in on the fun. She can make it through my entire Ten Minute Ab video, is AWESOME at yoga, and just started doing the cardio portions of my 30 Day Shred video with me. And you know what? I actually LIKE working out with my little buddy!

 (Working out to the 30 Day Shred)

So what I'm trying to say is, if you can't beat 'em, JOIN 'em! You can use your kids as weights, or for balance, or as motivating workout partners. Just don't let their presence stop you from doing what's best for your body and your sanity! Now is the time to learn how to ignore your frustrations, or invite your kiddos to join in on the fun!

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