As most stay-at-home moms know, we don’t get a lot of alone time, if any. I’m lucky if I get to sneak in a shower at night after the kids are in bed, and still I’m worried that I’m going to wake them up! Once you get past the pure exhaustion of the newborn months and realize that your tummy is not going to tighten itself, you may be interested in starting a workout regimen.
As a mom of a 4 month old and 17 month old, I am exhausted in the morning, and exhausted in the evening when the kids are asleep. These would be ideal times to exercise to some, but let’s be honest; it’s not happening. Now that my babies have somewhat synchronized nap times in the afternoon, I’ve started to try to get a workout in during that time… if I’m lucky.
Here are 7 steps to working out as a stay-at-home mom. Good luck!
1. Quickly change from pajamas to work out clothes.
Ok, let’s be honest. Isn’t this your go-to outfit everyday anyway? When that alarm goes off (and by alarm I mean one of my two children screaming in the monitor next to me), I am lucky to roll out of bed, brush my teeth, and change into yoga pants and a more supportive bra 😉 before one of the screamers wakes the other. So this one isn’t too bad.
2. Get the kids down for a nap.
This one’s a little trickier. The toddler is a bit cranky since it’s his nap time, and he is refusing a diaper change as if you just asked to give him 15 shots in his arm. The baby is hungry and needs to eat before her nap, and both kids are begging for your attention. Once you wrestle the alligator, I mean toddler, for a diaper change and get him a drink, and then do some cuddling before putting him in his crib, you can finally tend to the baby. Feed baby, change baby, put baby down to sleep a half hour later. The countdown is on…you might have a good hour left to yourself!
3. Go downstairs and insert workout DVD. Yay!
Realize after about 2 minutes that you are already sweating and need water that you forgot upstairs. Run upstairs and realize that there are no cold waters in the fridge and that you actually haven’t had anything to drink all morning besides a reheated cup of coffee…that you never actually got to finish. Fill up a bottle with tap water and run downstairs. You might have 45 minutes left to yourself!
4. Begin working out again for about 5 minutes when you hear the dogs bark.
Blood boiling, you run upstairs and put the dogs outside. NO ONE. Not even the dogs. Will wake up the babies during nap time. ESPECIALLY the UPS man. You might have 35 minutes left to yourself!
5. Continue working out for about 10 minutes when you hear that dreaded noise… the baby’s cry on the monitor.
Give her a minute; she might put herself back to sleep. Oh no, the cry is getting louder and she’s going to wake the toddler. Run up two flights of stairs while you’re already sweating and put her back to sleep. Sneak out of the room and run down two flights of stairs back to your workout. That counts as part of the workout right?! You might have 15 minutes left to yourself!
6. Finish your workout, minus the stretches (because you don’t have time for those anyway).
Run upstairs and let those darn dogs in. Check both monitors to make sure all is well in baby dreamland. Catch a few minutes of your favorite show, read a few pages of a book, write a few sentences of an article, or let’s be honest – scroll through Facebook.
7. Change into clean clothes and a more comfortable bra, just in time for the toddler to wake up!
Realize that you never ate lunch, or cleaned the house, or paid any bills. Oh well, you worked out! Those can wait, right?! Victory is yours!
Working out makes me feel complete. It helps not only my physical, but my mental state as well! And I look forward to the weekends when I can get a great, complete workout in while my husband watches the babies.
If the above sequence does not go in that order, which many days it doesn’t because children are unpredictable, your workout may not be completed. Do some sit-ups or yoga with the toddler and squats while holding the baby, or take the kids for a nice long walk. You will get your workout in and the kids will get fresh air.
No matter what you do, or what your days look like, if you get anything extra accomplished besides keeping the kids alive and being Supermom, you deserve a prize. Pour yourself an extra tall glass of wine tonight, realize that you are amazing, your kids are happy, and all is good in the world.