Working out with kids is so hard. If you’re anything like me, you were paranoid to work out at all during your 40 weeks of pregnancy. Then the baby arrives and the doctor tells you to stay away from the gym another six weeks. And by the time it’s safe to break a sweat, you’re so damn tired from night feedings you aren’t really interested anyway.
And that’s just with a newborn. Toddlers are a whole other story. They think your workout is mommy jungle gym time. They lunge and hang and pull on your limbs til you give up in exasperation. Nothing is worth this struggle, am I right?
But then you look down at that postpartum pooch and think… there’s got to be a way.
Before I had my second child, I was a huge advocate for the gym. I mean, free babysitting anyone? But the gym comes with its own cons. Memberships costs, the nightmare of having to get two kids in and out of the car, and of course the germy nastiness of a gym. I’m pretty sure if there is a virus to contract in this great country, it is sitting on a stationary bike at your local gym. The idea of bringing my itty bitty, pure six-month old to the same place where that guy on the elliptical is flinging sweat at everyone who walks by makes me squirm a little.
So since I got the “go ahead” from my OB after having my second child, I found a new routine that I absolutely adore. Working out at home efficiently. That means using nap time to work out hard and fast. 30 minutes… BOOM! You’re sweaty, your endorphins are going nuts, and you still have time to eat lunch and fold laundry before the kids wake up.
HIIT training is all the rage right now, amiright? High Intensity Interval Training. That means 45 seconds to a minute of intense exercise followed by brief rests. Do this for 30 minutes and you’re sweating, panting, and even better? You’re all done, girl!
There are a million different workouts you can do that incorporate HIIT strategy. I do (affiliate link) Cassie Ho’s 28-day PIIT program (the P stands for Pilates. See what she did there?), but there are literally thousands of videos on YouTube and HIIT workouts on Pinterest to choose from. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. Programs like Beachbody come with a health coach (props to my rad friend Tenesha who introduced me to this one) ready to motivate you to your goals. I’ve heard great things about Jillian Michael’s workout DVDs, too. The opportunities are endless.
I love working out at home now. I really do. But it doesn’t come without its challenges. Today, it took me about four hours to finish my 30 minute workout. Each time I was ready to go, my toddler needed something or the baby started crying. By the third hour, even I was on the verge of tears.
Can’t I just have 30 minutes??? 30 MINUTES, DAMN IT!
But most days, my toddler naps, and my baby looks at me like I’m crazy while I’m doing tuck jumps, squat hops, and burpees. It’s fairly seamless, once you move all the toys aside and tell the dog to get out of the way. And you know what, on those days — the days where my workout falls into place and I get my sweat on, the endorphins kick in, and I feel like the king of the world — I wouldn’t have it any other way.
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