Social fitness competitions give you a reason to get dressed in the morning. (Obviously not in anything with buttons or zippers--hello leggings!) When your children are young, you might find other reasons to leave the house during the day, but how often do those outings involve storytimes, parks, and play dates? Organize a fitness competition and have motivation each morning to do something that's just for you.
Achieving fitness goals can make you feel like you've actually accomplished something after spending all day trying to keep a tiny human alive and moderately happy. It would be one thing if children came with built-in gold stars and rewards programs: Congratulations, you successfully put me down for a nap in less than twenty minutes! Here's $10! Spend it on yourself, you deserve something nice. The reality of course is that babies are demanding creatures that generally offer nothing in return but adorable smiles (or is it gas?), recurring conjunctivitis, and an aching love/anxiety for their welfare.
When you organize your SAHM fitness group, be sure to throw in plenty of incentives for the winners and goal achievers. Ideas include a money pot, free babysitting by fellow members, or a celebratory Mom's Night Out where the winner gets free food and drinks. And if you have a toddler? Bonus! You're probably already running around more than you think--at least get something out of it!
Put your kid in the baby carrier or stroller, meet up with nearby friends, and get moving. Whether you walk and talk on a beautiful day, or push each other through a hilly run (literally or metaphorically), you'll love having the camaraderie . When temps force you and your child inside, join a gym with childcare included in the membership. Classes or group fitness instruction will provide you with a fun group of like-minded individuals that will keep you moving and provide you with real adult conversation.
Do most of your mom friends working outside the home or living far away? Fitness trackers make it easy to include friends with other schedules and locales. Use a fitness tracking platform that links different devices and you'll be ready to encourage, mark progress, and heckle your buddies in no time.
Walking or running outside with your child is incredibly beneficial to their wellbeing. Observing the outdoors and engaging in conversation about what they see helps young children learn about their environment, develop critical verbal skills, and bond with you! Plus? Bringing your baby along with you as you crush your fitness goals could not be any easier. The only equipment you'll need is a fitness tracker, a jogging stroller or baby carrier, athletic shoes, and maybe a bag of Cheerios.
Alternatively, hit a gym that provides babysitting and reap the many, many rewards of exercising without a kid nearby! Most cardio machines have TV's installed (some even have Netflix!), so you can watch your favorite shows while getting your heart rate pumping. Plus, you'll probably have time leftover to shower in peace and hit up the gym cafe.
Exercise after pregnancy can help you get healthy while saving your sanity. Walking is one of the first things you can do after delivering a baby (check with your healthcare provider), and it is by far one of the easiest ways to start your fitness challenge. Up the ante when you and your friends are ready and set new goals for your group. Then make sure and schedule that Mom's Night Out when you're ready celebrate your victories!
Bonus: check out this incredible video for inspiration:
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