Thursday, September 19, 2013

Practical exercise

Exercise is the area I struggle with the most.

When I do exercise (which isn't very often), it's a 20 minute video in the living room with children climbing me, stealing my hand weights and getting under my feet.

It just doesn't seem worth it most days.

I know how important exercise is though. Now that I am nearing my goal weight, I see that the number on the scale isn't all there is. Toning and strengthening are just as important to a healthy body, a clear mind and a smaller clothing size!

I've gotten mixed opinions from people when I mention that I don't exercise. Most often I hear:
"Oh you're chasing children around all day. That's plenty of exercise!"

If only that were true, I would've been a size 4 about 2 kids ago! Seriously. My house isn't that big so it doesn't take much to "chase after" my little ones. For the most part the children have been trained to stay by me when we're out and about. So no fitness involved there....

So I've been brainstorming ways to practically fit in more movement during the day.

I love the idea in the book about sitting on a balance ball while doing school at the table or sitting at the computer.

The SPEW (page 558-559) is also a great way to fit in quick moves. Although, I'm sure I don't do it right, at least I do it and it gets my blood pumping.

There are 3 toys in my house that are a great way to play with the kids and get some cardio in at the same time: hula hoop, jump rope and skip-it. The kids get a kick out of watching mom use their toys and we can have competitions to see who can do each one longer.

Doing standing push-ups against the counter when I'm doing my bible reading in the morning is a great way to warm up my arms for the day ahead.

Dancing with the kids during music time is another fun way to get the kids involved. We also incorporate movement when we work on our scripture memorization for the week. Our curriculum suggests alternating between reciting the verse and doing a move such as 5 sit ups or running in place for 10 seconds.

Tightening and releasing abs or glutes while driving is a great way to use mindless driving time to your advantage. Just make sure you pay attention to the road too ;-)

If the kids are upstairs and I need them, I will go up instead of calling up to them. Same thing with dirty clothes from upstairs, I will go up and get it instead of having them bring it down. That gives me an excuse to do the stairs as well as see what their rooms look like.

Giving the tub a good vigorous scrubbing is a job that needs done anyway, so why not really put your back into it and get a great workout at the same time?

That's all I have right now. I know there will come a day when I can do a 45 minute intense workout with no one under foot or go for a run and not worry about a babysitter or getting breakfast ready....but I don't long for those days because that would mean my kids are grown. In this season of life, I will make do and I know God will reward that effort (as He already is!).

How do you fit exercise in? What's your favorite way to include your kids in exercise? Do you have a favorite video? A favorite piece of equipment?