While I love natural health and nutrition, I tend to really struggle with getting in formal exercise. In the summer when I’m working in the yard and garden, I get quite a workout, but when the weather is bad and I’m shut up inside, I am so unsuccessful at making time to exercise. We have a treadmill, exercise ball, and exercise trampoline. Sadly, I rarely visit any of them.
But a couple of weeks ago while trying to figure out how I could fit in some sort of fitness routine into my day, I was struck with a great idea, and while it may not be ideal or doable for everyone, I’m excited to share it with you anyhow!
Like anyone else, I struggle with feeling like I can never take care of everything I want to in a day. We only have so much time, and having young children in the home certainly adds a few wild cards to the game. My mind is constantly reeling through the day to figure out the best and most efficient ways to multitask so that my day can be as productive as possible. I truly believe that exercise is important, but I have had a really hard time finding the best way to get it done.
I tried exercising when my husband would get home from work, and supper would always be late. I’ve tried getting up early, and the baby inevitably wakes up with me. Naptime exercise now gets in the way of homeschooling. It just wasn’t working out, and neither was I.
So a couple of weeks ago, I was wondering in my mind if there was any way for me to multitask while exercising. Could I possibly switch up something I was already doing to allow me to exercise a little bit, even with my children right there with me? Then an idea struck me, and I’ve found out that in our daily routine, I can work these tired muscles a little bit!
How am I doing it?
Well, when I started to evaluate my day, I thought of our read aloud time. Every day for school I spend about 45 minutes reading out loud to our children. I usually do this while sitting in my rocking chair and sipping my coffee. Generally, the littlest of the littles rocks with me and goes to sleep before being laid down for a nap. It’s lovely and quite relaxing, but also quite sedentary. What if I started doing some stretching and strengthening exercises while reading?
And so, our read aloud time has become a time of literal read aloud exercises for me. Now, I’m clearly no fitness expert and you won’t find me training for a marathon with this approach to exercise. But I’ve been really happy with this simple routine! While reading to my children, I do lunges, wall squats, simple Pilates exercises, and anything else I can think of to gently stretch and tone. After four babies, my core can use all the toning I can give it! I have light weights that I also want to start using while reading, but I haven’t added them in yet. The weights had been hiding in the basement somewhere.
Have I noticed any huge results yet? Truthfully, no. But I’ve been pleasantly sore the days following, and for me, that is a victory! My goal is to regain some of the strength and flexibility I had when I was able to invest more time into physical fitness and feel all-around healthier. I think this simple habit will help me do just that.
Sometimes I get a little out of breath while reading and I have to pause for a moment. Sometimes I goof up words because I’m concentrating on holding my tummy in. I can also never keep count of reps while I’m reading. But I’m doing something, and this something is clearly better than the nothing I was doing two weeks ago! I’ll take it.
What do you think? Are you a busy mom that struggles to find time for fitness? How do you do it?
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