Along comes every magazine and social media site pointing their scrawny long fingers, reminding us of every calorie we consumed during the holidays. Bleh!
Then, just as I turn a blind eye and choose to blissfully ignore every article telling me that NOW’s the right time to lose all that weight, my dear, sweet, oh-so-considerate husband surprises me with a year long membership to the gym. A year! An entire YEAR! Can you imagine! Now there’s something I’d “forgotten” to add to my already veeeeeeery long list of new years resolutions (most of which have been carried over from previous years). So reluctantly I did. I added gym(ming) to the list. I simply couldn’t throw hubby’s ‘thoughtful’ gift back at him and I certainly was not going to disappoint the love of my life. After all, he was the one who had to listen to me whine about getting fat ever since baby number one was born. According to him he was just giving to me what I’ve been asking for, for years! and that’s great. Thing is, between getting the kids ready for school, putting baby down for his morning nap, cleaning the house, taking a shower, running errands and eating etc etc etc…there just was NO time. Still, I couldn’t dream of letting hubby and myself down. So after cutting back on and moving around a few chores here and there I finally found myself standing in the gym cardio section, completely lost. No idea what to do next. Ready to run out the door screaming. Until I got started…
Suffice to say, after every body bumping, muscle toning and bone scrunching workout, I must admit I feel pretty darn good!
But not all moms have the time and means to make it to the gym anytime Cosmo shoves an article with another perfectly sculpted body in our face. That is exactly why I asked fitness and nutrition student Colleen Hughs to help us with a fitness routine, so easy, it can be done from the comfort of your very own home. Because you can be a mom and fabulous to!
Create your own home-based fitness solution
The key is to find something you enjoy, that is relatively easy to do, not too time-consuming and can fit into your lifestyle with minimum effort. Here are 6 manageable options to consider:
I never imagined that this could have any impact until I saw the kilograms drop off a colleague who did 500 skips per day. This enabled her to move from a very low fitness base to brisk walking, and eventually running. Skipping gives a good cardio workout (in a short space of time). And you can skip inside or outside of your house – or at that hotel when you are travelling!
The Sun Salutationis a good sequence for beginners. It comprises of a series of 12 poses which help improve strength and flexibility of the muscles and spinal column. On the other hand, learning 3 – 5 àsanas (yoga poses) of a particular yoga form (e.g. Ananda Marga, Hatha) is another way to learn yoga stances and to practice them on a regular basis. Soon you should see your stress levels plummet!
If you would like to build your core, Pilates is perfect for strengthening it and creating a flexible, toned body. There are a variety of books, dvds or exercise routines that can be downloaded from the internet to guide you. During each exercise, the focus is on keeping your core engaged and exercising from the core outward. Practicing Pilates 2-3 times a week can offer significant improvements in core strength and endurance, as well as abdominal definition. It will also do wonders for your posture and relieve back pain. Although you will not be puffing and panting after a Pilates session the pull on the muscles will definitely be felt on the days thereafter!
The rebounder (a mini trampoline) is great as it is easily tucked under a bed. Rebounding devotees swear that just two minutes of small controlled movements will bring positive effects. The exercise improves circulation, boosts the lymphatic and immune systems, and enhances muscle tone. It places no strain on the joints. A short bout of gentle jumping can go a long way in terms of health! And can be enjoyed by the kids too!
Cycling Can be enjoyed together with the whole family. It’s fun, it’s easy, does not cost a fortune and has so many health and fitness benefits. There’s almost no reason why you shouldn’t do this. Make sure to wear the correct safety gear while paddling along the outdoors!
Back to School
You could combine a few exercises like the ones that were given in physical education at school years ago. Examples are star jumps, push ups, knee lifts, burpees, etc. Only recently while doing bootcamp did I realise that these ‘good old faithful’ exercises are once again trendy and valuable for cardio work and strengthening. Get assistance from a trainer to design an exercise programme which you could then run with.
Always check with your medical practitioner before embarking on an exercise programme.
Goodluck getting started!
xoxo fashion butterfly