Think you can’t make time for fitness?
It’s hard to make time for fitness as a mom. Add homeschool and it can seem impossible. I struggled with this a lot when I first began homeschooling and even more so when I began working from home. I needed to stay in shape, but working was also crucial when the dentist informed me that we’d soon be looking at braces. Are you juggling school for multiple kids or drowning with a to-do list that won’t quit? All the while watching the scale creep up and your energy plummeting? I’ve been there.
There are 7 things I do to make time for fitness in my daily life, although I give myself a bit of grace if I don’t make it!
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1) Meal Planning
As I mentioned last week, I meal plan. I’m listing this one first because it not only saves some time, but you find better control over what’s getting eaten. While that may not exactly be fitness itself, it sure helps with fitness so it’s a bit of a 2-for-one!
2) Use timers
Or find a workout with a set time. Too often, my excuse for why I can’t make time for fitness is that it takes too long. This is coming from a former gym rat who would spend more than an hour there daily, but do you feel that way though too – workouts take too long? I do still miss the gym, but workouts don’t have to take that long! The program I use increases its length each week and then cycles back through. So, my weeks have workouts ranging from 7.5 minutes long to 17.5 minutes long. Just knowing you have a short workout can help you make time for fitness! (BTW- you can grab it for only $14.97 right now)
Using timers to limit your time frittering is also helpful! 😉 I have a lot of work to be done on Facebook. Beyond a doubt, I bet you know how quickly you can get sucked into fluff there. You see one cool video… and you’re gone down a rabbit hole. If you set specific times in your day for social media or any games you play and use a timer to cut yourself off, you’ll likely find at least enough time for one small daily workout.
3) “Batch” anything possible
Try to batch all your similar work together. Do you have a bathroom cleaning day, or do you clean one here and there? Instead of cleaning room by room, try picking one or two things each day and doing it in all the rooms. For example, vacuum the whole house at once rather than vacuuming just the main room and then washing the windows, straightening up, dusting, etc…
Turn your housework into a mass-production style job to help you make time for fitness! What things do you do that you can streamline? Back to meal planning as the example- if you know what you are making, you can easily prep days worth of items. Being in a flow and having a plan helps things go faster. Additionally, try creating cleaning kits to keep in different parts of the house to make cleaning faster, saving you time for a brisk walk!
This one is potentially hard. It was for me at least. I like things a certain way… but living with 3 guys, I’ve gotten over it! 😉 I know I need to let them help me. Things can no longer be viewed as being done “wrong” and being “another thing to fix.” I’m writing more on this in the future, but for now, let me just say they need to help us for their own sake! They will get better at the chores, and that will save you a ton of time. Some jobs you may want to consider delegating: unloading the dishwasher, vacuuming, windows and mirrors (we use Norwex and water, so it’s almost impossible to mess up!), sorting laundry, running clutter piles to bedrooms, and sweeping.
5) Bring the kids with you
Do you have access to a big open field or a running track? Your kids can play in the middle while you run or perform other exercises. When I could still run regularly, we did that often. I still run on occasion when my knees are feeling tolerant. 😉 Now that my boys are older, we race each other on the local track, weather permitting. We have a blast, I’m worked out to the max, and they get some movement in too! When they were much younger, I sat them in the middle with toys and ran around the track without headphones to keep a closer eye on what they were doing. Kids also make great weights if you proceed carefully and know what you’re doing! I was bummed when mine grew too big to wear during squats. 🙂
6) Routines aren’t just for the kids
Try setting a routine or rhythm to your day! Sit down and write out your day. Estimate about how long things take and where to fit them in; include a spot for working out. Commit to trying it out for a week before re-evaluating and improving it.
It doesn’t have to be a strict schedule and just another thing to do. It can be as simple as knowing what order it falls in during your daily rhythm of life. That may be enough to keep you on track and able to make time for fitness. My morning routine is, typically, Bible study with a hot drink, return emails, then exercise. That keeps me on track. If I can’t get to it, I change into exercise clothes before our school day to help me commit to doing it just after.
7) Little hacks to your regular life
If you unquestionably just can’t find time in your day or week, consider little mini hacks to your day. A weighted vest would be a great addition to a mama bear running around all day, cleaning house and playing with all the kiddos! Setting a timer to beep every hour, reminding you to walk around the house, up and down the stairs, or knock out 20 squats will do a ton with minimal effort! I wear a Garmin that beeps at me when I’ve sat for too long and I hear the new Fitbits now do the same!
Your turn: Which of these tips sounds doable for you? Do you have your own to share in the comments?
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