Last month I wrote about picking our battles and this month, after successfully completing my first Tough Mudder and bring my oldest the orange headband I promised her, I’ve decided to offer up 10 ways to win when it comes to finding time to exercise.
1. Find activities in the Valley to train for and sign up for the FREE training. The PF Changs 1/2 Marathon is coming up in a few months and is a great short-term goal, and often signing up is all you need to do to get access to training programs for free or very low fees.
2. Pick places within a short driving distance that you can go with your family on a weekend, but plan a physical activity to participate in. Recently, for my own training I went to the True Grit Mud Run near Show Low. We made a weekend of it with some family friends and my girls saw me off at the start and cheered me on through the finish. The had a great time and I got the benefit of a 5k.
4. Use community pools. Take a swim and really get moving with the kids. They’ll have a great time and you’ll get a workout.
5. Turn on some music, record some FitTV or check-out fitness DVDs at the local library and get moving! Your kids will love interacting with you and you’ll feel good that you are all getting active despite the heat.
6. Stretch! This may not seem like an activity worth mentioning, but it is. It is great for your body and can be done with a few spare minutes. If you fold your laundry standing…do toe touches in between folds. If you play with your children on the floor, use that time to stretch out.
7. Take a walk! This one is more difficult with temperatures so high. But after dark, in a well-lit neighborhood or park, with a good friend and a bottle of water, you can easily walk an hour without thinking…and walking and talking is great cardio!
8. Find a class you are passionate about. I can only commit to classes when I feel like they fit my family’s schedule, or the benefit is worth the time away from my kids (if I absolutely can’t get them to sleep first). Places like Sumits Yoga offer scheduling you could fall in love with!
9. Use community centers for yourself and your kids. At places like Beuf Community Center you can walk the track in the gym while your kids participate in classes.
10. Know when you are beat! My last two days have been a reminder that as moms we are especially susceptible to the storm of family life – sick kid, emergency dental procedure, overload at work, traveling spouse, summer camp ending, and chores! I write to you from the comfort of my couch with a small stack of oreos and a soda, and I am waving my white flag. There will be no exercise today!
But tomorrow is a new day….a day I would like to win!