Most mothers find it difficult to find the time to schedule in an exercise session let alone a class at the gym. An exercise plan does not need to be so precise or particular. Physical activity is not only important for weight loss and weight maintenance, but also beneficial for mental health and relaxation.
So to ensure as mothers we achieve some exercise in our days, incidental exercise is a great option. Incidental exercise is a way in which you can build up your exercise parts throughout the day, similar to the way in which the exercise in the Healthy Mummy 28 Day Weight Loss Challenge works.
Incidental exercises are the movements you perform during the day as part of everyday life. Keeping active throughout the day is the real key to permanent weight loss and maintenance. There are lots of ways to increase your level of exercise through the day such as parking further away at the supermarket; walking to the shops or getting off the bus two stops early.
These simple actions are sometimes unachievable for time poor mums who are aiming to squeeze as much out of each day. So I have come up with some fun ways to be able to increase your exercise, especially with kids, no boring exercise plans per se!
My favourite way to achieve incidental exercise is by parking at the coffee shop, than go for a fifteen minute walk, and then I have to walk back to first have a coffee, and then be able to drive home. Everybody needs a coffee. This photo is of us on the weekend with Isadora on the back of the double pram. Take note, this is sometimes not relaxing, on the pram, in the pram, out of the pram, picking flowers, running next to you. All in all though it is important to try and stay relaxed as you are setting a healthy example for your kids by exercising with them.
Eight Top Tips To Sneak In Some Exercise
1. Walk to the park rather than driving.
2. Wear your sneakers when you go to the park so you can play with the kids there. Climbing ropes, up and down the slide, monkey bars, now that is a workout.
3. Creating a dance off with the kids as a weekend activity or just dance while you are doing the cooking or dishes. This is a winner with me.
4. Star jumps and squats while putting out the washing.
5. Piggy backing the kids, or babies in baby carriers, while doing chores. Vacuum cleaning never made you so fit!
6. Do five bicep curls with each bag of shopping
7. Do abdominal crunches and lunges while watching your favourite show.
8. Run on the spot; do star jumps or burpees while you are waiting for photos to load on Facebook (best on mobiles as the photos take longer to load!)
These are just a few recommendations that I have started in our house. Having a second child makes it harder to get out and about to exercise, even more so with a toddler who does not want to stay still or be minded by other people.
A good way to be able to gauge the amount of incidental exercise you are achieving is by wearing a pedometer. The aim is to reach at least 10 000 steps. It is actually quite scary to see how little incidental exercise you may do some days. But with a few changes to your daily routine and including some of the ‘nifty’ ideas above, you will see your steps increase dramatically. Get your husband, partner or friend (someone you are competitive with) to wear one as well and compete against them. That would definitely give me an incentive to achieve some incidental exercise.
What do you do for exercise each day? Are you a gym junkie, a walker, a yoga lover or do you prefer to swim or ride a bike? Or do you dance like a dork while cooking dinner to Salt n’ Pepa like me?