Fitting in Fitness
For many of us, we have a jam-packed to do list every day. So what is the first thing that goes to the bottom, especially for moms? The things that help us take care of ourselves – including FITNESS! I know what you’re going to say: the kids have to come first, I can’t tell my boss no, my husband needs my attention too, I have so much cleaning/dishes/laundry to do! I get it! I’m in the same boat! So, how can you make yourself a priority?
- Schedule time for yourself. It may not be for physical activity at first – a manicure or pedicure, some time to chat with a friend (perhaps during a walk?), a hair appointment. Regularly scheduling time for self care is really important! You can’t take good care of your family if you are feeling run down and deprived all the time! Try planning something once per week – it’s just an hour! Everyone can find an hour!
- Talk with your husband/spouse/significant other. It’s quite possible they don’t realize you need time. Let them know how you’re feeling and be sure to listen to them too – maybe they don’t feel like they have any time to pursue the things they enjoy either. Together, you can come up with a plan that works for you both!
- Look at your schedule! Are you running around every night and weekend? There should be one day every week that everyone is OFF! Maybe it’s time to scale back a bit! For my kids, the rule is they can each participate in ONE activity, club or sport at a time. With 6 of them, that’s still a lot of commitment! The reasons for my rule: school has to come first; they need to learn to prioritize their interests; they need time to just play and be kids! They will be grown up and have their own commitments soon enough. Don’t make being a kid feel like a job! Let them do the things they enjoy (within reason), spend time with them (besides shuttling them back and forth) and you need to enjoy the time while they are young. My oldest is 17 already – it really does go SUPER FAST, even if some days seem eternal!
- It’s okay to say NO! You don’t have to accept every invitation, be involved with every fundraiser or accept every project! Do yourself a favor and say no when the request isn’t something you want to commit to! No explanation is necessary! I am all for getting involved with the kids’ schools, helping out for an event and taking my kids to parties – when it fits in my schedule!
- It’s also okay to have some down time! Many people (women especially) feel like we need to schedule every minute of every day or we’re being lazy. You need time to recharge and relax – besides while you’re sleeping! Schedule your down time if you have to! STOP THE GLORIFICATION OF BUSY!
- Now it’s time to figure out the fitness thing! Every single person has 168 hours in their week. Take out about 56 hours for sleep and 40 hours +/- for work and that leaves you with 72 hours every week! Use it wisely! Yes, you do have to shower, cook, clean, commute, etc. but it averages out to about 10 hours per day. How many hours do you spend watching television? On the computer?
- Realize that fitness doesn’t have to mean a formal exercise program! It can be a walk around the block, playing basketball with the kids, jumping on the trampoline, swinging on the swings, mini golf – all fun activities that are physical!
- If you’re like me, a class works better for you, and doubles as time to yourself – find something you like and look forward to and you’ll make the commitment! I found that in yoga, which I do 2-3 times per week.
- I also love 10 minute mini-workouts – you can seriously make it work. An example is 50 jumping jacks, 30 squats, 30 high knees, 30 skater slides; repeat twice. There are a ton of them on the internet! Trainers realize how time crunched everyone feels and that fitness comes last, so they have created these great mini-workouts for our busy lives! Check out Donovan Green’s No Excuses Fitness, and Christine Bullock Simon on Facebook or 30 Day Challenges and 7 minute fitness apps for ideas.
- Start an exercise regiment slowly. Don’t go all out or you will not only be sore, but you won’t enjoy it nearly as much. Respect your body and build up so you are eventually getting some form of fitness in every day.
So, who doesn’t have time to fit in fitness? Go ahead and sign up for that class you want to try. Go for a walk with your friend/spouse/kids. Make time for the things you enjoy! Time management is tricky and many times, we don’t even realize where we are wasting time. This is just one of the many things I can help you with!
Questions or comments? Please email them to me: firstname.lastname@example.org