Life is busy. Between running around after energetic kids, messy mealtimes and keeping up with everything on your growing to-do list, finding a minute to fit in exercise can be tricky.
Do you even need cardio after 12 hours of non-stop parenting!?
Fitting in a little extra time to get your blood pumping doesn’t mean stretching yourself thin.
We’ll take you through a few easy ways to fit in more movement throughout your day.
One way you can fit in a quick sweat session is to get up a little earlier or stay up a little later (depending on your preference). We know what you’re about to say – it’s much easier said than done, especially when you’re desperately trying to catch up on a few extra zzzs.
You don’t have to suddenly switch your alarm to 5am and get up before the sun. Even waking up half an hour earlier than normal can create a small window for you to work out without being interrupted – You don’t even need to drag yourself to the gym.
Here are some quick and easy ways to get moving at home:
- Take a brisk walk around the block, while listening to your favourite podcast or audiobook.
- Stretch out all the kinks after a night lying down with an at-home yoga session.
- Run through a short HIIT workout routine in your living room.
If you’re a night owl, make those extra hours work for you. Try and squeeze in one of the above activities after your kids are in bed, before you unwind for the night.
An additional 30 minutes of exercise will also help you get a better night’s sleep.
An easy way to increase your movement throughout the day is to take a few extra steps – it’s as simple as that. Walking is underrated when it comes to keeping you fit and healthy and can get the job done just as well as running. Here are a few simple ways to increase your steps without even realising:
- Park further away. If it’s time to do your weekly shopping, try and park towards the back of the car park. Just make sure it’s convenient and doesn’t add stress when you need to load your groceries afterwards.
- Walk and talk. When you’re talking on the phone, get up and move around. Take your virtual buddy on a walk or just pace around your house.
- Take the stairs. This is an age-old tip repeated time and time again, but it really does make a difference!
An easy way to see how many steps you’re squeezing in is to use a wearable tracker. While the current guideline is 10,000 steps a day, when you add in the time you spend chasing after your little one, you’ll get those steps up in no time.
Not only are you getting your home nice and fresh, cleaning is also a great way to get you moving.
While you clean, a lot of your muscle groups are being worked at the same time. Activities like scrubbing or vacuuming are great arm workouts. You can also add a squat or lunge when you’re picking something up.
Are you still struggling to get motivated? If there’s one way to make cleaning fun, it’s with a good old dance party. Plug in your headphones or speaker and press play on your favourite tunes. Try an upbeat playlist that gets you moving – not only will it help you get through your cleaning, it will also put a little pep in your step.
Of course, it would be ideal to have a block of alone time while you’re working through your reps, but that’s not always possible. Instead of battling to squeeze in time without your little ones, include them.
There are plenty of great routines that are perfect for the entire family:
- Get them involved in your routine (modified, of course). Let them try out a few exercises or have them count your reps.
- Help them get their stretch on with their very own yoga mat.
- Put on some music to get them dancing while you get through your reps.
- Run after them while they ride their bikes.
- Make the most of the playground. While they’re having a blast, you can fit in a few reps or keep walking to get your steps up.
Your workout might take a little longer to do, but the extra cheer squad is sure to get you through those last reps.
Sometimes the best way to fit in a little extra movement is to break it up. When you have a few spare moments, use them to get in more activity – even if it’s only a few minutes.
Not only will a few squats or bench push-ups get your heart rate up, but it will also give you a minute to stretch.
- Waiting for extracurriculars to wrap up? Try going for a walk around while you wait.
- Out running errands? Leave the car at home or park a little further away.
- Cooking? Squeeze in some squats while you’re waiting for the pot to boil, or do some counter push-ups.
Getting in a little extra movement doesn’t need to be complicated. You can get moving and start reaping the benefits of your schedule.
Maybe getting up early twice a week to do a circuit is something you want to try, or you might prefer a nice gentle walk.
It’s about finding what works best for you!