Making Time to Work Out

If you read, watch, or listen to news of any kind, you know you should exercise. You hear it all the time. Physical activity is good for you for a bajillion reasons, and you damn well know it.

But do you actually do it? I don’t. But I want to.

I found some inspiration from this week’s On Balance guest blog at the Washington Post website. A former Olympic rower with twin toddlers writes about her one hour a day of swimming. She says “it works as a buffer against the emotional challenges of parenting.”

That sounds pretty good. I could use that. Of course, she has to wake at 6 a.m. to make it to the pool and back home in time to work. But making the time is worth it to her.

Do you work out? What kind of benefits do you enjoy from it? How do you make the time? I could use the inspiration to get started!

14 thoughts on “Making Time to Work Out

  1. I’m liking the mommy/baby swim lessons that my daughter and I are taking at the Y. It gives us a chance to bond after being apart all day, or unwind together if we’ve been cooped up when I work from home. Moving through the water with a little one in your arms definitely gets your leg muscles working, especially if you make an effort. The other nice thing, I’ve found, is that being in the water makes you tired. She always goes to sleep quickly at bedtime after a swimming lesson, and so do I.

  2. How funny… I was going to write a post about not feeling guilty about exercising. On Mondays after a full working day, the kids eat supper and then we head up to the YMCA. They play in the daycare while my husband and I take a spinning class. On Fridays, while Jonah is in preschool, Zoe and I go to the YMCA. She plays in the daycare while I watch Regis& Kelly on a elliptical machine. I love it! And my kids love going to the YMCA, as well. They always have other kids to play with at the daycare and a ton of toys. I stopped feeling guilty along time ago about taking time for myself to exercise. It helps me de-stress, I feel like by staying active I’m setting a good example to my kids, and I feel like I have more energy.

    You know, some YMCA’s have those Stroller or Baby and Mommy workouts. I think that’s a great way to get exercise, socialize with other moms, and still spend time with your baby. You should check it out!

  3. My kids won’t go to the gym daycare, and I don’t blame them. They never clean the place, and it’s just baby stuff in there. These are my workout times:

    1. 5:30 am during the week.

    2. If my husband goes in the morning, I squeeze in a quicky between the time I leave work and pick up the kids from school. I leave work at 4, get the gym around 4:45, work out until 5:30, then pick up the kids. The gym is less than 1/2 mile from their school, so that helps.

    3. Make time on the weekend. Believe it or not, this is the hardest to commit to! But think about it: if you go on Saturday and Sunday, you only have to do 2-3 weekday workouts. But once you have 1 or 2 children in sports, this is the hardest to schedule.

  4. Very timely post. Marty & I just purchased a membership to a “recreation” center on Tuesday. Tonight we are going to check it out. It should be fun. It has a huge pool area – complete with kids water activities and a lap pool. I will let you know how it goes. I am hoping to take advantage of the children’s play area (it appeared to be very sanitary during the tour) but I have my doubts as my youngest has some separation anxiety issues…. cross your fingers.

  5. You have inspired me! I’m joining the Y tonight, at some point you have to say okay, I shouldn’t weight more than I did when I was pregnant? And I breastfeed – OY!
    Sara: where do you go for those Mommy & Me classes? Those would get me motivated to move!

    Wish me luck!

  6. Amy–I looked it up today, and the Norwood Y does have mommy/baby swim classes. I was a member of the Y, and went to the Norwood one (and the East Walnut Hills, but that’s an adults-only facility), but stopped once I became pregnant.

    I think it’s time to rejoin. It’s free “enrollment” right now, as well.

    I’m also committed to walking my dog every (or almost every, weather permitting) darn night. Owen goes to bed early enough where I should be able to do this. It’s not running a marathon, but it’s something.

  7. The Gamble Nippert YMCA in Westwood has a “Stretch, Strenghen, and Stroll” class for mommies and babies. I think they workout inside the gym during the winter months.

  8. Yep, Cara, I took that class at Gamble-Nippert. It was fun because the older kids rode their bikes around the gym while the moms did their exercises with the little ones in the strollers. We’re also taking the swim lessons at Gamble Nippert. Hey! This thread is turning into an ad for the Cincinnati Y!

  9. alizashana says:

    I found your blog on working magazine webpage. I work out during lunch hour. At first I was against paying the high fee for a gym membership, but it keeps me in shape physically and a little bit nicer. Spin class is only 45 minutes and I walk away drenched. Sounds mean, but I grew up with an overweight mother and it caused some stress issues with my family, so that has become my motivation!

  10. just4ofus says:

    Having the new bridge gym should help you out!
    We purchased a treadmill to work out at home (much easier than making the commitment to go to the gym) and I also run outside (even in the cold).
    It is time to yourself, done only for you. That should be motivation enough!

  11. I run on a treadmill when the baby naps and try to squeeze in a run sometimes while my husband is still home. I also go to the gym for yoga. I just make it something that is non-negotiable, like brushing your teeth. You have to do it to stay healthy. I think it will be such a good lesson for them. My son is only 8 months, but I hope he will learn to live a healthy life from his mom. My sister has three kids and one on the way. The oldest is 4. Amazing isn’t it? Anyway, she runs all the time with them in the running stroller. Now the older two boys do the kiddie races at her 5k’s. I think that is so neat. Sometimes they even win a medal! I am new to the blog, and am thoroughly enjoying it. Thank you for sharing your experiences!

  12. Wow, ladies! These tips are awesome. I think I’ll start out by getting an exercise bike so I can work out, watch my shows, and keep on eye on Cassie in the Exersaucer–all at the same time!

  13. When we lived in a suburban area, we joined the Y when my son was 10 months old. I’d had it with feeling flabby. I went one night a week after my son went to bed, my husband went another night. I tried (not always successfully) to leave work early-ish one night and went to the gym immediately after work, but got home at the same time. We took our son to the day care at the Y on one weekend day and we worked out. The other weekend day, my husband and I split going to the Y or one of us would take our son to the pool (in summer) and the other would work out.

    It worked but was insane! And that made it not good as a longterm solution. We got an inexpensive eliptical, a bosu ball and some weights for a home workout. That works ok, but I want to clean up and go to bed at night! So, when we moved to the big city two months ago, I was determined to make it work. I tested out a gym under the councourse of my building. I decided if I could get a good workout in and be back at the office in an hour and 15 minutes I would join. I got a two-week trial and found I can make that work for me. I get a protein shake and a snack for lunch after at my desk. So, now I come in a about 20 minutes earlier, leave at the same time, but can get a workout in a few times a week (that is, if I can get over this horrible cough).

    Like another poster said, you have to make it non-negotiable!

  14. Anonymous says:

    I also work out during the lunch hour, and it keeps me sane. I’m committed to running 20-25 miles a week, and it makes me a better mom. If I can’t fit it in during the lunch hour, I do it early in the AM. I don’t have an ounce of guilt about it, as I know how good it is for me mentally, and it does act as a buffer to the emotional challenges of being a working mom. It is worth every effort it takes to find the time.

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