Just reading this title might make want you to run into your bathroom with a package of Oreos, but please don’t!
If you’re a mum with little ones, you barely have time to breathe let alone think about exercise, am I right?! I get it, believe me, I do! But and this is a big but… you have to find a way to make time.
And you know it’s good for you. You know you will feel great afterward and will even be able to deal with your kids with just a bit more patience. And we all know how important “me time” is.
Easier said than done, I know. The biggest challenge is time. How do you squeeze in a little physical activity while changing dirty nappys and fighting with your toddler to nap? Not to mention how mentally and physically drained you are. Just the thought of any physical exertion can make any mum roll up into a fetal position.
Burpees are for people who actually get some shut-eye. And most of us mums do not.
The truth is, we are all short on time and energy. But the one thing I have learned over the years (and I’ve been a mother for seven now), is that when I do some form of exercise — I feel good after. And the only muffin top I want is the one I can eat.
There is often fear associated with exercise too (especially if you have never exercised before) that you might do something wrong. We may even visualise exercise as grueling, sweaty, and definitely not something you can commit to long-term. But it doesn’t have to be that way. Movement is movement. And the more you move, the happier your body will be.
Who cares if you don’t like running — walk instead. And if you’re someone who hates going to the gym and dislikes lifting heavy weights because you bulk up easily, then you might want to try yoga or Pilates. They are not strenuous and bonus… they can be done from the comfort of your home or office.
With YouTube, you can now stream a lot of workouts for free.
There are no excuses, ladies! There really aren’t. Fitness doesn’t have to cost anything either. Maybe a $5 yoga mat from Five Below or a pair of tennis shoes. Just depends on what exercises you plan on doing. I have active little girls, so my motivation comes from them. My oldest will put on a leotard after school, play some music on her tablet, and literally dance around for 45 minutes. And I love it. I love that she has a desire to move her body.
And perhaps, maybe she has learned this from me. Pre-kids I used to be a certified gym-rat. In my twenties, it was the norm to walk around in pain from too many squats or lunges from the day before. The more cardio I did, the leaner I thought I’d be. The heavier I lifted, the more definition I would have. I told myself I had to meet certain criteria each week in order to be and stay fit. But it was a lie.
When I had my girls, I realised I needed to be gentler on my body, more kind. I also learned that physical exertion didn’t have to make you feel cripled the next day.
Pilates — if done continuously — will give you your best mom-bod.
And that is why I am a big promotor of Pilates. About a year ago, I found this woman online — Robin Long — who created a program called, The Balanced Life. I pay a monthly fee of $19 and get a complete workout list for the entire month. She also has recipes available to all in her “Sisterhood program” and a Facebook group you can join for inspiration and motivation. You can also see before and after pictures from women who have found success with her plan.
Robin is not by any means paying me to write this, heck, she doesn’t even know me or know I am promoting her. The biggest reason I started her program was to alleviate some of my back pain. And Pilates does help with that. Robin is a mum, too and completely understands motherhood and all the crazy it entails. She is very knowledgeable about Pilates and has a very calm, easy spirit. Her workouts are never brutal, they are gentle on the body but you do have to put in the work.
Once you become a member you have access to the dashboard 24/7 and can choose any workout you want to do. All the workouts range from 10 to 30 minutes and you can stream them from your phone, tablet, or computer. And who doesn’t have 10 minutes in their day?
You can follow her schedule as it is laid out or you can do your own thing. I do these workouts on my lunch hour in my office or at home in my basement when my kids are playing, whenever I can squeeze that little bit of “me time” in. You don’t even have to shower afterward! I kid you not!
As with anything, consistency is key. Gone are the days of crazy workouts. You can get results in limited time with the right workout, and Pilates will get you where you want to be. So, what are you waiting for? You can find Robin on Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest. She also has several free – yes, free videos on YouTube if you want to try some out before signing up.