You Don’t Need a Gym to be Fit!

After having my first child, I was so disappointed with how difficult it was for me to go back to the gym to do my usual workout routine. In fact it was impossible! I had to cancel my gym membership. Desperately, I began to search for ways to get in a quick workout session.

I remember trying to follow workout routines on postpartum videos that I acquired from a friend. Although they were better than nothing; I felt so restrictive. My baby boy rarely permitted me to a 30-45min session in front of a television. Once I had my second baby, I was back to square one with trying to find a way to fit a traditional workout session into my stay-at-home-mommy life. Before failure and frustration would creep back into my life, I found hope!

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Even though I felt alone in my struggle as a mom rebuilding her fitness journey, I wasn’t! There are thousands of Moms embarking on the same journey everyday and they’re slaying it! They’re proving you can be a fit and healthy mom without using a gym membership.
Across my IG and FB pages, I discover Moms doing lunges and squats while folding laundry, I see Moms at the park chasing their kids around and using the playground as workout equipment, and I find Moms using babies as weights. If we want to be fit, we can do it anywhere! The gym is where you are! 

So when I get asked by other moms, “How do you work out at home?” The answer is, “You learn to be creative with your workouts and you stay consistent!

Take for example cardio, there’s more than one way to get your heart rate up and it doesn’t haven’t to be on an eliptical or stairmaster. Sure you can put your baby in the jogger and run a couple miles; but when you have 3 kids all under 4, there’s not a jogger big enough. What do you do? You get creative! Perhaps you can run up and down your stairs, do 15 mins of HIIT (High-Intensity Interval Training) outside while your kids play or plyometrics while they nap. As long as you maintain your target heart rate for specific period of time, you’re doing cardio!

img_9191For me, I like to maximize my limited workout time. With two active toddlers it’s hard to get a consecutive 30 mins of workout time when I’m home. So I’ll do combo movements where I incorporate weights and use plyometric moves. Sometimes I’ll do my training in parts. I’ll begin my day with 15mins of training and squeeze another 15mins in the afternoon when they nap. If that doesn’t work, I’ll involve my kids. We’ll dance together, run around together and have active play. Some of my favorite workouts are with my No Excuse Mom Group (A free, community workout provided in cities all over the world. Click the link to learn more). We meet at a park and train together, while our kiddos play. If you’re like me, I think a playdate with a workout is multitasking at its best!

I know this may seem like common knowledge to some, but I know what it’s like to want to be fit and struggle to get there. I’ve been inundated with the duties of a mom, housewife, daughter and friend. I had to realize just because a gym is not ideal for my schedule, my fitness goals don’t have to be forgotten. Once I made my health a PRIORITY, I found ways to make it happen. There are so many wonderful resources easily accessible to help us get to the fitness level we all desire. It’s a matter of how bad do we want it. Are we willing to make the time? Because we don’t need a gym to be fit!

A few times a year I create a vision board specifically for fitness. I post my goals on a poster, I add inspirational quotes and I include a 3-month calendar to track my performance. Maria Kang, founder of No Excuse Mom, has a great book on how to goal set for your health as well as a plethora of great information on healthy living. The fitness principles of her book and workout examples are a great asset to those who want to get started on their fitness journey or to those that need some motivation to eliminate those everyday excuses.

I know we are bombarded with countless excuses every day on why we can’t train or workout, but a gym membership should not be one of them. Let’s eliminate the excuses that hinder our health together. Identify your “why” you want to be fit and post them somewhere you can see it everyday. It will motivate you to move!

In case you’re interested here a couple quick 15-20 minute workouts you can do at home (the focus is on your legs, arms and core):

Beginner: repeat 2-3x, 5-10sec break between each exercise 

  • 30 sec Butt kicks
  • 30 sec High Knees
  • 20 ski squats
  • 20 reg squats
  • 20 sumo squats
  • 20 push-ups
  • 20 tricep dips
  • 20 Russian Twists
  • 20 flutterkicks
  • 20 bicycles
  • 1 min plank

Advanced: repeat 2-3x, 5-10sec break between each exercise 

  • 20 jump squats
  • 20 side lunges with crunch
  • 20 curtsy-squat combo
  • 20 burpees
  • 20 overhead press with backward lunge
  • 20 bicep curl with forward lunge
  • 25 tricep dips
  • Commando (up/down) plank (10 each arm)
  • Side plank (10 sec hold/up-down 20x/twist 20x)
  • 2 min plank

 

Please note I am not a fitness guru. I’m simply an ordinary mom who invests in her health. I hope to encourage others to stay active and make their health a priority regardless of their lifestyle, especially moms.

 

 

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