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Why Moms Don’t Need Gym Memberships

Before becoming a parent, I enjoyed late night dinners downtown and Friday evening happy hours with friends. As a mother, I spend my Saturday afternoons hitting Target to stock up on diapers and researching the latest video monitors on the internet. Awesome, right? Mommy Hobbies are definitely different than what I did prior to parenthood.

With that being said, becoming a mother doesn’t mean that I’ve totally lost interest in the things I used to enjoy doing. In fact, I’ve learned that it’s imperative to find a way to incorporate my hobbies into my day-to-day parenting. Otherwise, I’ve realized that it’s very easy to lose yourself to feeding schedules and bed routines.

In my previous post called Mommy Hobbies, I shared a little bit about some of my passions prior to parenting. Surprisingly, despite my wine drinking and cigarette smoking days, I love to be active and exercise. When I became pregnant, I gave up my gym membership for baby making. After 40 long weeks, I couldn’t wait to return to running as soon as the doctor cleared me. And boy, did I start running. Running around like a mommy with my head cut off. Breastfeeding, diaper changing, bottle washing, coffee drinking, etc. You get the idea.

While I wasn’t always fitting in a traditional workout, I quickly realized that mothers do not need gym memberships in order to be active. To all of you pregnant women and new mothers out there, I will tell you the secret to getting into shape. Simply have the baby. Then, you will officially be starting the Mommy Workout Plan. Just to warn you, this isn’t a three times per week plan. This is an every day, every waking moment, every attempting-to-sleep minute, 24/7/365 workout regime. And by the way, this workout is accompanied by the “I don’t have time to eat” diet. While performing the Mommy Workout, you are guaranteed to lose weight, get in shape, and run yourself ragged. Enjoy. Here it is:

The Mommy Workout Plan:

Midnight Warm Up – Warms ups are performed before exercising in order to prepare muscles and increase heart rate. Mommy’s Midnight Warm Ups look something like this. Wake up. Make a bottle. Run to the baby’s room. Feed him, then rock him back and forth, bounce him up and down, whatever his preference, for at least 15 minutes. Repeat rocking as necessary until baby falls back to sleep. Depending on how old your baby is, you may complete several reps of this warm up throughout the night.

Mommy’s Morning Circuit Training – “Circuit training is a form of resistance training using high-intensity aerobics. It targets strength building and muscular endurance. An exercise “circuit” is one completion of all prescribed exercises in the program. When one circuit is complete, one begins the first exercise again for the next circuit. Traditionally, the time between exercises in circuit training is short, often with rapid movement to the next exercise.”  Mommy’s Morning Circuits include showers, getting dressed, packing lunches, making breakfast and herding children/husbands out of the door. Each circuit will take at least 10-12 minutes. Mommy’s Morning Circuits are intensely aerobic. If your makeup is sweating off your face by the time you walk out the door, you’ve completed the circuits successfully.

Mommy’s Toning Tactics – Toning exercises are meant to develop physique and increase leanness, creating muscle definition and shape. Don’t worry – you won’t need to purchase any equipment for these exercises. As long as you have a shitload of laundry, a car full of groceries, and a heavy toddler who prefers to be carried everywhere, you’re set. There are innumerable amount of toning exercises you can try, but here’s a few to get you started.

  • Mommy Squats – While holding your toddler who refuses to be put down, bend and pick up all of the toys, cups, and other crap that are constantly lying all over your floor.
  • Laundry Lifts – Stuff your laundry basket as full as possible. Carry it down two flights of stairs. In one hour, return downstairs to switch to dryer. Carry full laundry basket back up two flights of stairs. You can modify this to become more challenging by carrying your child up and down the stairs with you. You will most likely repeat laundry lifts for at least two loads per day (more reps for larger families).
  • Crouch and Reach – If you are a parent, you are most likely aware that there are least 200 toys underneath any given piece of furniture in your house. The behind/under the couch is literally a black hole. Bend and reach at least twice a week to search underneath all furniture to keep up on lost toys.
  • Baby Bicep Curls – Get a good bicep burn by lifting baby 3000 times per day for various reasons (in and out of high chair, in and out of car, in and out of crib, and so on).

Child Chasing Cardio – When there are several children in the house, chances are you will be chasing one, carrying one, and changing one at all times. I’m not even kidding that I wore a pedometer once and I walked something like five or six miles in eight hours. Taking care of kids is pretty much like owning a treadmill. You are always moving but never getting anywhere.

Wine Down Time – The cool down is a crucial part of every work out. Cooling down allows the body to return to a resting state. To end your Mommy Workout each night, enjoy a little Wine Down Time by indulging in a large glass of vino. After a particularly challenging day, enjoy the whole damn bottle and get a few hours of shut eye before starting all over again at Midnight Warm Ups.

 

Occasionally, I wish I had the time go to the gym and get on the treadmill. But most days, I feel like I’ve already run a marathon by bedtime. Even though it’s not typical training, I still feel proud of that. So there it is. The reason why moms don’t need gym memberships is because parenting alone is damn good exercise.

 

 

Circuit Training. Retrieved from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Circuit_training on April 2, 2013.

 

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