Get it on the calendar! It’s imperative to schedule the workout time. If it is not on the calendar, it doesn’t happen. A workout can be achieved with any time schedule, a 20-minute run, 10 minutes of free weights, a total body workout class. My saving grace is that I am a member of a gym that offers childcare facilities. I achieve double duty by taking time for myself while keeping in shape.
Go on exercise play dates. Join Baby Boot Camp with your new mom friends; incorporate sporting activities into your day at the beach or park; run with your jogging strollers along the beach. Exercise is always easier when you have a friend helping you achieve your goals.
Walk, walk, walk! The best way to exercise with kids of any age is walking. Whether in a stroller or allowing them to walk along side of you, going out on a long walk is both an adventure and a great way to introduce exercise into their lives. If you want to make it a little more that a stroll, put the kids in a double stroller (or, in my case a triple stroller with the baby in a front pack) and take on some steep hills.
Adopt the philosophy of healthy living. Make exercise a way of life rather than introducing it as something you only do sometimes. If exercise is incorporated into daily living and you participate, your kids will notice. Sign your kids up for sports at an early age and help your kids train at home so that you are part of the process, not just sitting on the sidelines.
Focus your workout efforts. Most moms would agree that running after your kids while traveling is enough of a workout, but taking 20 minutes a day for a focused workout routine is more productive and beneficial in burning fat and toning your muscle. Take along a resistance band, it takes up little room and you can do almost anything with it (and it works for every fitness level). If you’re traveling and prefer your hotel gym, alternate workout time with your spouse to allow you both to get some exercise in. If you want to work out with your kids, swimming in the pool, running on the beach, or going for excursion walks are great ways to include the little ones.
Maureen Widroe is the proud Mom of triplets plus one. She is the former President of Santa Barbara Parents of Multiples 2010-2011. For more information on parenting multiples, check out www.sbpom.org.