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Fitness ideas for busy parents

Family snow shovelling
Snow shoveling a good workout.  (AP Photo/The Grand Rapids Press, Jon M. Brouwer)

When you have kids, it can be very difficult to find some time to work out.  When you do have time to yourself, it’s hard to resist the allure of surfing the internet, catching up on your favorite TV show, or spending time with friends.

Here are a few suggestions on how to squeeze in some fitness into your busy day.

Need to vacuum?  Not only can you get some mild cardio in the process, try adding some lunges every time you push the vacuum forward.  Don’t forget to switch legs after 10-15 reps.  Or you can try single leg squats if you are up for a challenge.  Remember to keep your muscles tight, especially your abs and buttocks.

Young children often leave toys and books wherever they go.  Grab a basket and try some squats as you pick up each item.  Make sure your back is straight and that your knees are in line with your ankles.  Pushing your tail bone back will help you keep proper form.  You can vary the exercise by changing the distance between your feet for a wide-stance squat.

Have dogs?  Encourage your kids to accompany you on your daily walks.  Whether they tag along or not, a brisk walk for 30-40 minutes is good for your dog and good for you.  Pets need to exercise just as we humans do, and it can help stop them from being destructive around your home.

Do your kids play sports on the weekends?  Instead of standing on the sidelines, put on your workout clothes and run a few laps around the field.  In a stadium?  Try running up and down the stands in between cheering on your child.  Help them practice their soccer drills, or try a game of Frisbee football.

For a bit of Winter fitness, shovel the snow that has accumulated on your driveway or front walk.  Great cardio workout, and fun for your kids who typically never turn down an opportunity to go out in the snow.

Even if you exercise for a few minutes at a time, it is definitely better than nothing.

For more info: Fitting in Family Fitness Ideas for Moms


  • Jennifer Jones, Dallas Beauty Treatments Examiner 5 years ago

    Great tips!!