Are you having trouble fitting in time for a workout or any kind of exercise for that matter?
After taking care your kids, feeding your family, working and then trying to keep the house looking presentable: How do you find time to take care of yourself?
Read more for for a Quickie Workout for busy moms.
This could have been called an Exhausted Mom’s Exercise Routine or even a Lazy Mom’s Workout. I’m not lazy at all, but I’m just so busy that I am exhausted much of the time. Trying to stay in good shape is a bit more difficult, as we age in general, and certainly after having children. I am no longer a size 4 or 6 and I am fine with that but, I would truly prefer to Not keep growing!! I’m not looking to lose any crazy amount of weight, I just want to trim down a little and maintain my weight. More importantly, I want to feel good both physically and mentally and have some energy!
Can you find 10-15 minutes to exercise?
About 8 years ago, after having 4 children, I finally decided it was time to get control of my life and my weight and I found a routine that worked for me. I was able to lose weight (dropped 2 sizes), get in much better shape and I learned how to eat healthier foods. Click Here for more about how I lost weight and learned to live a healthier lifestyle. I like exercising at home because I don’t pay for a gym, waste time driving there and I don’t care what I look like when I exercise.
My 5 Favorite Exercises
These are all easy to do with an excellent impact, you really feel them! I don’t have a lot of time to spend on a workout so I usually leave only 10-15 minutes for exercise. I notice that even if I plan to only do a few exercises for a short time, I usually get pumped up and workout more than I expected.
- Arms with weights
What I know about myself is that I have passed the “half way” mark, I am over 50 years old. I teach full time and have 4 children still in school. So everyday that I can get up early and manage a workout, I consider that a huge accomplishment! It would be so much easier in the morning, to leisurely drink my coffee, read the news and check email. Instead, I’m choosing to be healthful. I am not an athlete but at 50+ I can still ski down a mountain, boogie board at the beach, ride the biggest roller coasters and go stand-up paddle boarding. I even managed a 2-hour zip-line course with my son on our last vacation. So for “my age”, I think I’m doing okay. I don’t have to get “old” if I don’t want to. I love when people find out my real age and they are surprised because they think I’m younger. I’d like it to keep it that way!
Cheating Because I Can!
Yes, as soon as I mention a workout, the next thing I mention is cheating! I am capable of doing all these exercises on the floor with my yoga mat. I can, but I usually don’t want to get on the floor at 5am when I just got out of bed. It’s too much extra work! I cheat by using the arm of my couch for several of my maneuvers. A good solid couch arm is perfect for planks, pushups and dips. I still get the workout benefit but I don’t need to go all the way down on the floor. See why this is really a Lazy Mom’s exercise routine?
MY CORE WORKOUT
Planks – Amazing core exercise with a million variations so you never get bored. Besides regular planks (using the arm of my couch), I love side planks, leg lifts and knee to opposite elbow planks. (I do 2-5 minutes total, I hold a plank for 30-60 seconds) Please Note: in the beginning 10 seconds was my limit, so don’t be discouraged if planks are painfully difficult, even embarrassing at first. I had to work my way up to a minute.
Pushups – I know there are some variations, I don’t get too fancy here. If I remember, I cross one ankle over the other. I just want my arms to look good and work my core. (15-25 reps, mood dependent)
Dips – You actually need to use something like the edge of the couch for dips, so I’m not really cheating. I do 20 regular dips and then 10-15 on each side with one leg crossed over my knee. You will really feel your arms after a set or two.
Squats – A few years ago, someone gave me a 30-day squat challenge, which I completed and it made a huge difference in my thighs and glutes. Then I got busy and forgot all about it. Recently, I added squats back into my morning routine and I could already feel the difference within the first week. Summer and the Bahama vacation we have booked is very motivating here. Use Pinterest to look up 30-day squat and you will get several years’ worth of results.
Arms – I’ll do anything to help avoid batwings, I like my arms to have some definition. I prefer to use kettle bells because they are versatile but any hand weights will do. Sometimes I combine my squats with pumping hand weights at the same time. Using kettlebells, I do swings, figure 8s, goblet squats and several others whose proper names fail me. The idea is to get moving, pump some iron, so I do that.
Since I am not a professional fitness expert, photographer or fitness model, I will not attempt to include my own workout photos, I’ll refer you to the experts at Greatist. They have excellent info and photos on everything you need!
A PERFECT WORKOUT DAY
To me a perfect day as far as exercise and physical activity is concerned, has three key components.
- Targeted exercise – just 8-15 minutes of my favorite 5 moves from above.
- Walking or hiking at a brisk pace. I love when I hit my 10,000 step goal. Click Here to get started with a fitness tracker.
- Any other physical activity, preferably something outside. This activity can be sports oriented like swimming, bike riding or paddle boarding. Other active work like gardening, leaf raking, snow shoveling or even vigorous housework all count as healthy physical activity.
Do I have a Perfect Exercise Day every day? Hardly the case! I am totally content if I have 3 or more Perfect Days each week. Any exercise and activity is better than none at all.
Staying Motivated Music helps – I always wear my iPod shuffle, small convenient, drowns out distractions. The music of course usually helps pump up your pace a bit. I also lose track of time and workout longer that I was planning. Putting on pants which are now a little loose – extremely motivating!
Don’t be too hard on your self! Be positive, focus on what you Did Do each day. ANY exercise is better than none! Rather than wallowing in all the things you didn’t do or should have done, be proud of each bit of exercise you did. Be happy for every healthy food choice and for each active day.
When you are used to taking care of yourself and suddenly have 2, 3 or more people to care for, it’s easy to put yourself last. You take care of everyone else (for years) and then you are too tired to exercise, eat healthy foods and get enough time to yourself. Years of family care takes a toll on you and you forget who you used to be. For me, having four kids, a husband, a house to maintain, full-time and part-time jobs – I know how hard it can be to get Me Time.
The big trick is to just get started!
Every time I have fallen off my workout routine, I notice I have a lack of energy, lack of interest, and lack of will power. As soon as I begin to start moving and working out, I immediately notice an increase in my energy levels and motivation to do more!
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WHAT WORKS FOR ME
I happen to sleep in yoga pants so I therefore sleep in my work out clothes. This saves time and effort. I roll out of bed, drink some water to rehydrate, then have a bit of coffee. I add some headphones and start my planks while still sleepy. The more I move, the more I wake up. The more I exercise, the younger and stronger I feel. So don’t delay, get started today!! Tell us what works for you!