So now that you’ve had a month to put into practice some of the suggestions from Part 1, how is it going? Hopefully, you’ve had more successes than not and have started to see how structuring our calendars as much as possible is key to getting things done. It’s been said that it’s easier to achieve a goal when you write it down. That same principle can be applied here as well.
Now that you’ve seen the nuts and bolts of fitting it in, how do you fit it in when you’re new to parenthood or new to fitness as a parent? The key is to do what you can do today. Some of us have been there in the gym on January 2nd. It’s full of all the new resolution makers to lose weight and shape up and they hit it hard. Then mid-February hits and pretty much anything and everything gets in the way of the calendar.
It’s like in running long distance. If you start out too fast you will burn out more easily. So start out with a realistic goal and go from there rather than try to overcompensate for what you haven’t been doing. Also, it’s important not to overdo it if you’re deconditioned to avoid injury!
If you’re getting (back) into fitness as a parent, here are a few tips to get you started!
- Focus first on posture! Holding an 8 – 10 pound weight (or more!) can really wreak havoc on posture. Just like when we’ve been told to switch sides where we hold our purses, start switching sides that you hold your little one to balance out the strengths and weaknesses. Incorporate Kegel exercises and drawing your navel into your spine as much as possible during the day to reactivate those abs!
- Invest in an ergonomic baby carrier! You can’t put a price on your health and while it may not seem related to health and fitness, how you carry any kind of weight is going to change your body position and could potentially lead to injury and/or chronic pain. And don’t forget to keep your legs, glutes, and core engaged when lifting, carrying and holding your bundle of joy. The baby should not be holding you; you should be holding the baby!
- Use that jogging stroller to your advantage and as a workout prop! This is an important time to build your energy back up in order to develop endurance and stamina. Starting with 20 – 30 minutes per day of exercise is a great way to start off slowly without overdoing it. After all, you want to increase your energy not zap it before you get a chance to start! As your energy increases and you feel ready for the next level, continue to add on time to your cardio fitness regiment and increasing strength for postural stability and joint mobility. You’ll know it’s time to step it up when it’s all too easy! And don’t be afraid of the next challenge!
Looking for some personalized guidance to fitting fitness into parenthood in person or online? Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org!