5 Easy Mom Workouts for Busy Days

There are so many things and people vying for a mother’s time and energy. Work, children, and household management responsibilities top the list. It’s easy for your own needs and self-care to quickly slip down the rankings. I am a big believer in the analogy from the pre-flight instructions on a plane. The message: in the event of a change in cabin pressure put on your oxygen mask before you help others put on theirs! As mothers, our default is to put others first. Prioritizing self-care is much more easily said than done. Exercise is an important part of physical and mental health. It also helps with sleep, emotional regulation, and overall mood and energy levels. In this blog post, we’ll explore five easy mom workouts to incorporate into your busy schedule.

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Favorite Workouts for Busy Moms:

1. Prioritize a Morning Workout:

Many of the moms I know who exercise consistently do so because they prioritize a morning workout. Once the rest of the household is up and the day gets rolling, it can be difficult to get away to exercise. It seems something always comes up at work or with the kids that needs your attention. Most gyms offer an early workout class if you love a class. There is also no better start to the day than getting outside for a walk or a jog. Get a bump in your mood from that early morning light or by going with a friend. The hardest part about an early workout is, of course, the early wake-up. The positive pressure of meeting a friend or pre-registering for class will help you avoid the snooze button and get your day off to a great start!

2. Home Workouts

With a busy schedule and kids to take care of, it can be challenging to make it to a gym regularly. To stay consistent when you can’t get out to exercise, I think every mom should have some sort of workout she can do at home.

When the kids were babies I would squeeze in some acitivy while they napped or did tummy time. Now that they are older, I have been known to quiz them on spelling words while finishing up my workout in the basement. No matter the stage of your family, a home workout will give you the ability to exercise during those pockets of time you have at home.

One silver lining of COVID is the increased accessibility to more home/ virtual exercise options. See if there is one that matches your interest and that you can make work in terms of space and equipment. Here are some popular options as well as ones that have worked for me:

  • Yoga- Yoga with Adrianne on Youtube. This is a great place for beginners or those with more Yoga experience. There are great playlists for beginners, those with back pain, or those with a specific focus such as “Yoga for Abdominal Strength.”
  • Peloton– The Peloton cycle, running, and strength classes are unmatched. Great music, great instructions, and most importantly, a great workout! There is an upfront investment, but any investment in your health is a great investment!
  • Ladder- Last year one of my goals was to strength train consistently. I don’t have a lot of equipment at home. I also don’t love going to lift weights at a gym. I looked into a bunch of workout apps and after a brief free trial, I signed up for a month of the Ladder App! Ladder is an App-Based workout program with several coaches who cater to different strength training styles (Crossfit, bodybuilding, and kettlebell workouts to name a few). Despite no prior experience with kettlebells, the workouts were accessible and effective. I noticed that lifting, carrying, and other strenuous activities in my daily life became easier. After doing the kettlebell program last year and building some strength I have decided to “change teams” within the Ladder app, at no additional cost, and work towards lifting heavier weights.
  • Cardio- If you have the space for a treadmill, elliptical machine, or rower at home this can be an incredibly efficient way to get in cardio at home. Great for busy days and bad weather days!

Moms are experts at making things work! It’s important to apply the make it work attitude to exercise habits. It doesn’t have to be perfectly on track with your plan, but being able to move your body and get some type of workout in at home is essential for any mom who wants to exercise regularly.

3. Small workouts throughout the day

Moms are master multitaskers! This can be used to your advantage by incorporating exercise into your daily activities. As a mom, I want to stay healthy and active to keep up with my kids for many years to come. Going for a 3-mile run or lifting heavy weights are certainly great steps to take toward that goal. These strenuous activities, however, are not the only ways to maintain good physical fitness and stay active.

My kids are currently elementary-aged. I spend a lot of time at their practices and lessons. If they are practicing soccer, I will walk laps around the field during practice. If they are in a swim practice, I will get in a short workout at the adjacent gym. When my kids were younger, we spent a lot of time at playgrounds so I printed off a little “park workout” and kept it in our stroller. I was able to get in some park bench squats, monkey bar pull-ups, and play structure tricep dips while the kids played. These small bursts of activity may seem insignificant, but they add up throughout the day and contribute to your overall fitness level. Some of my favorite times to get in some extra steps are:

  • During the warm-up of my kid’s game (since we always have to be there an hour early!)
  • During one of my kid’s lessons or practices
  • On the way to or from school (if your house is walkable)
  • During a break or lunch at work
  • Meet a friend for a walk instead of for lunch or a coffee.
  • Parking farther away from stores or at one end of an outdoor mall to get more steps in while doing errands.

4. Family Workouts

Turn exercise into a fun family activity by involving your kids. Plan outdoor activities like hiking, biking, skiing or even going on a walk in the neighborhood. This is a great way to not only tell but show your kids the importance of exercise. It is also a way to turn an easy mom workout into an easy family workout! It can also provide a low-pressure environment to spend quality time with your kids. Walking shoulder to shoulder or being together out in nature can make it easier for kids to open up.

5. The Mom Workout Mindset

There was a big mindset shift I had to make about exercise after I became a mother. Before children, I loved to be on a precise training plan for a half marathon or have boot camp classes booked out for the month. It didn’t take long into motherhood to realize interruptions and a change in priorities was the new norm. I had to lose the all-or-nothing mindset and embrace flexibility around exercise to stay consistent!

I learned to embrace a run that included a stop at a playground instead of the route I previously ran. On a day home with a sick child, I would squeeze in a home strength training session rather than going to a class. Although the workouts were sometimes small the mindset shift was big!

Easy workouts for busy moms

As a busy mom, finding time for self-care, including exercise, is crucial. By incorporating these easy workout strategies into your daily life, you can prioritize your physical and mental health without adding extra stress to your busy schedule. Remember, taking care of yourself is not selfish—it’s necessary for you to be the best mom, partner, and individual you can be. Start small, stay consistent, and enjoy the positive impact that regular exercise can have on your life!

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