How Parents Can Fit Exercise Into A Busy Schedule
It's hard to fit in an organised exercise routine as a parent when you already spend most of your day taking care of your kids. If you're lucky, you might find the time and a gym with a decent daycare. If not there are plenty of other ways to sneak in a work-out.
To reap the benefits of improved circulation, weight loss, toned muscles, and better health you need to exercise at least 150 minutes a week. It doesn't have to be accomplished all at once. You can get the same benefits by exercising in 10 minute increments. For instance 10 minutes of physical activity 3 times a day for 5 days in a week will add up to 150 minutes.
The following are some ways you can sneak in those minutes.
Start first thing in the morning by stretching in bed. Bring your knees up to your chest and hold for a few seconds. Swing your legs from side to side. Stretch your arms above your head. You can even do crunches before you hop out of bed. If you wake up early enough you can fit in your regular exercise regime before the kids tumble out of bed.
During your drive to work or your child's activity you can do some ab flexes at the stop lights. These are done by squeezing your abdominal muscles as if you are trying to touch your ribs to your stomach. Hold for a few seconds and then release. Combine errands with a work-out by parking a few rows away from the store and using the entrance that will make you walk longer to reach your destination.
Run up and down the stairs for 10 minutes or sit down and stand up from a chair. We all know that household chores can be a real work-out and they can be even more so if you add things like doing squats while folding clothes or dancing while dusting. Don't sit down to watch your favorite tv show. You can still catch all the action when you're doing sit-ups, jumping jacks, marching in place, or dancing.
You can get your kids involved in your exercise program too, and have fun to boot. Take a nice brisk walk with your family after dinner or bring along the sport stroller and go for a jog. Play basketball, football, soccer, or freeze tag. Hold a family Olympic trial with your own choice of games and hand out medals for extra fun. Have a jump rope or hula hoop competition.
As you can see, there are many ways to fit in a quick work-out. It doesn't really matter what you choose to do for exercise. The important thing is to get moving and keep moving.