It’s hot and sticky outside, and you’re running from one kids’ activity to the next. How do you fit in a workout to stay healthy and keep your sanity? Here are 5 ways that I’m making it happen:
1. Run or walk in little bursts:
I try to run or walk everywhere, no matter how short the distance. It may sound silly, but I think it is good for my body to experience sudden bursts of physical energy, and the best part is that it motivates me to want to be active more. If I’m taking the garbage out to the curb, I sprint with it; if I need to move the hose to water our new shrubs, I run to it; if I’m getting the mail, I run to the mailbox.
2. Run or walk to get where you are going:
I also try to run/walk pushing Baby in the stroller (running for as long as I can – 5 minutes, then walking for 1 minute, etc.) to destinations that we need to get to. Back when we lived in the city before Baby arrived, this was easy because there was so much within walking distance. Now that we live in a woodsy suburb, our destinations are places like the library, the alpaca farm, the house with the new foal, the pond, etc. The point is just to have a destination. You feel like you are killing two birds with one stone: getting in a workout and getting to where ever you need to go that day. Another trick is to drive part of the way and to walk or run the remaining distance to your destination. This is especially helpful if you don’t live in a city. You can park a half mile from the store, take the stroller out, and run or walk with Baby the rest of the way. If you need to buy something, you can always stash it in the bottom of the stroller on the way back.
3. Meet up with friends for a walking or running date:
I love doing this because it serves several purposes:
- I get to socialize.
- Even if one of the kids have a runny nose or something, you’re still getting together with friends and since the kids are in strollers, they are not spreading their germs to each other.
- Most importantly, I won’t bail on my workout. It’s easy to change your mind about working out when it only affects you, but if you’re meeting up with someone, you feel like you have to go no matter what.
- You can schedule these walking/running dates ahead of time. If I know we are walking with friends on two of the days of the week, it takes the pressure off of me to figure out how to get exercise into those days.
4. Do it first thing in the morning:
Summer weather can be unbearable for long walks and runs so we try to get out first thing in the morning. If I throw my sports bra, running socks, and shorts on right away, it motivates – and reminds me – to get out. The weather is usually at its most beautiful and there is no time for excuses. Very often, Baby will still be in his pajamas, but who cares? It’s one less thing to do before getting out.
5. Go someplace new to explore by walking or running:
Walk or run you and your little one around the beach, a museum, a sculpture park, a new playground, a nature preserve, or a new neighborhood. Summer is the time for exploring!
For more tips on fitting exercise into your day, check out The Stay at Home Mama Workout: Tips for Staying Fit With Little Time and Money.
How do you fit running or walking into your day?