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Get Motivated and Overcome Excuses!
By Sheryl Lau
Have you already ditched your resolution to get in better shape? When you work full-time, manage a household, raise kids and take care of pets, it is difficult to find time for date night with your partner or spouse much less your friends on occasion. So how exactly are you going to make your fitness goals come true?
The biggest reason I hear from moms for not being able to get a workout in is: “I don’t have the time.” Many are full-time corporate employees, owners of their own businesses, part-time consultants and those who stay home with little ones not yet in school. Between the morning shuffles of packing school lunches, driving kids to school and the evening madness of homework, dinner preparation and preparing for bed, who can find time to fit in a workout?
The thing that is most important to remember in all of this your frame of mind. Working out MUST be a priority. It doesn’t matter the amount of time you have if you are not passionate about wanting to succeed. Without making getting fit a priority you will fall off of the wagon long before you ever start to see results. Making exercise a priority is challenging for everyone. But, finding time for regular physical activity is so important that it absolutely must be placed on your calendar. A parent needs to exercise not only for themselves, but, for their children’s benefit as well. Children mimic their parent’s behaviors and it is important for us as parents to lead by example. We need to show our children that working out gives you more energy, helps maintain or lose weight, improves your mood and helps you sleep better, and makes you overall a healthier individual! You owe it to yourself and your family to stay as healthy as you can. One cannot be a caregiver or provider if you can’t take care of yourself.
Before you convince yourself that you have no time for exercise, think again! Here are a few tips to “finding the time” and bringing fitness back into a priority.
1. For you stay-at-home moms, take advantage of your children’s nap-time by purchasing and utilizing a jogging stroller. There is nothing better than a quick run or a fast walk with a jogging
stroller while your baby or toddler goes down for a late morning or afternoon nap. The larger wheels of the stroller offer less resistance, making the stroller easier to push and hence put
less strain on your wrists and shoulders.
2. Adopt a workout partner. By setting up regular workout times with a friend or co-worker to exercise, you are more likely to stay committed and get your exercise in.
3. Make date night start with fitness together. Hit the gym, go for a long run, walk or hike, play tennis, or go on a bike ride. A couple that trains together stays together!
4. Trade off workout times with your partner. Take turns watching the kids in the evening or on the weekends to carve out some exercise time for you both.
5. Wake up early to work out. Utilize the early mornings while everyone is still in bed sleeping to get your workout in. If you are a single parent, you can utilize some home cardio equipment
you may own or even play some yoga or workout DVD’s to exercise. Utilize the internet to stream workout programs for free!
6. Maximize the minutes you have. Try interval training. Interval workouts are those that alternate high-intensity levels with lower-intensity effort. For example, a 20 minute cardio workout
that consists of 2 minutes sprinting on the treadmill followed by 1 minute of complete rest is interval training. Intervals can be done on ANY piece of equipment and do not have to involve
running. Researchers have found that intervals burn 3 times more fat than running twice as long at a moderately hard, steady pace. In addition, recovery from interval training forces the
body to continue burning fat for energy. This leads to an increase in post-workout calorie burning. One spends less time exercising and sees greater results.
7. Enlist the help from a trainer. Having an hour of exercise directed by a personal trainer can really jumpstart your strength and cardio training. Many people do not know the proper
exercises or methods to obtain the goals they desire. Spending time with a trainer can be a confidence builder, plus, many trainers can even save you time by coming to your home.
As you can see, it may feel like it is impossible to make time to workout, but, it can be done with a little effort and change in one’s habits. Getting fit is all about changing one’s lifestyle. As long as you are dedicated and attempt to work out on a regular basis, don’t be hard on yourself if you miss a day. Remember, it is all about taking care of yourself!
Sheryl Lau is a Fitness Competitor and Fitness Model.