4 Ways to Create Time for Postpartum Fitness
When we become moms, our fitness routines take a complete 180. If you never had much of a fitness routine before having kids and want to create one now, there is A LOT to navigate. Though my son was born over seven years ago, I STILL haven’t lost that pregnancy weight! This has frustrated me to no end, and I’ve taken it as my mission to figure out why women struggle so much with postpartum weight loss.
Getting in that exercise has been really hard for me. And now I understand that when you have kids, there’s a whole new set of challenges that get in the way of finding time to exercise.
I recently discovered a book written by two moms who shared what they learned in fitting fitness into the busy and unpredictable life of motherhood. This is the book I wish I had a long time ago!
Here are four tips for postpartum weight loss and fitness from Hot, Sweaty Mamas: Five Secrets to Life as A Fit Mom by Kara Thom and Laurie Kocanda.
Taking time means you actually organize and either pay or exchange time for some form of child care, play date, or family babysitting so that you have time to work out.
2. Make Time
Making time is about finding somewhere in your week where you sacrifice something else for your fitness time. For example, during the kids’ nap time when you normally catch up on other things or try and get some sleep yourself. Or in the evenings after they have gone to bed or at lunchtime if you leave home to work. “Making time” is about a sacrifice of something else in order to get exercise time.
3. Snare Time
Snaring time means you take everyday activities and turn them into mini workouts. This is something I have been successful with, and you can read more about my experience with this approach here. This method includes things like actively cleaning house, gardening, mowing your lawn with a push mower, doing ten squats after every time you use the bathroom, five wall push-ups at the kitchen counter every time you wash dishes, choosing to walk places and using stairs when you have the choice.
4. Share Time
Sharing time means finding ways to exercise with your children. This could be using jogging strollers, walking while wearing your baby, taking family yoga classes, or playing active games with the kids like soccer or roughhousing.
Before having kids, you can rely on one or two ways of getting exercise, but after kids, you need to use all four methods. Why? Because in the land of motherhood there are so many interruptions and changes to routines that you can’t count on any one mode to get in your daily fitness needs. If you learn what works for you in all four modes, you will be equipped to create the fit life you want.
Mari is a licensed practitioner of Chinese medicine, a singer/songwriter and the creator of Mamashine. She is also a survivor of postpartum depression. Mari lives with her energetic son, her husband and various animals in Austin, TX.