After summer vacation, it’s time for the kids—and for you—to get back into the school routine. But the return of busy schedules can sometimes make it hard for you to squeeze in those all-important fitness sessions. Don’t let it fall by the wayside! It will take time and effort to get back into the habit, but it’s worth it! Here are ten ways to help you make sure you don’t slack off on your workout.
Find sneaky ways to fit in exercise. Skip the carpool and the carline, and walk your kids to school and back home! You’ll have undivided time to find out how their day went, talk about class assignments or share a laugh. I like to use my walking kit whenever I go for a stroll because it comes with resistance tubes so I can tone my arms while walking and talking! Also, when you’re out and about, be sure to park your car at the far edges of the parking lot to get a little extra workout, and consider walking or biking to do your errands instead of driving.
Plan a few outdoorsy activities. Fall is a perfect time to get out and have fun. Plan an apple or pumpkin-picking expedition, take a hike through the woods, or ride a bike to check out the fall foliage. Even raking the leaves and jumping in the piles can be a fun and festive fitness activity!
Play with your kids. Kids need plenty of exercise, too. Before homework starts, let your kids run wild to get some of their energy out. Play a game of freeze tag or hide and seek, have a dance party where you play all of their favorite songs, challenge them to a jump rope competition or an informal game of football, basketball or soccer. You’ll all have a blast! (And they’ll be ready to get back to business afterward!) Being active with your family is a great way to bond and boost your health at the same time.
Try something different. You’re never too old to learn something new! Sign up for a dance or exercise class to freshen up your fitness routine, or start a new walking or running routine to prepare for one of the many 5K walks or runs that take this time of year. Set a step count for every day and use my heart health pedometer to track your steps and help you meet your daily goals. Fall’s the perfect time for a fresh start! If you’re nervous to try something new, ask a friend to join you. Everything is a little less scary when you have a buddy by your side!
Plan ahead for your winter workouts. If the weather where you live will make outdoor workouts a bigger challenge, start strategizing how you’ll get fit once the weather turns frightful. Join a gym, look for an indoor pool where you can squeeze in a swim workout, or invest in some equipment you can use indoors. I would recommend that you start with an exercise mat for support, three-pound toning weights for strength training, and a balance ball to help you with posture and flexibility!
Look for pockets of time where a workout might work. While your child’s at dance class or football practice, take a little time for yourself and head out for a brisk walk or jog or run up and down the stadium steps. I personally prefer to exercise first thing in the morning, before my day’s commitments crowd in!
Join a team. Consider getting back into a favorite sport from your school days—look for grown-up volleyball leagues, basketball teams or soccer games. It’s a great way to meet new people, and switch up your workouts throughout the week!
Find a fitness buddy. Make friends with another mom from your kid’s class, and head out for your workout right after school drop off—that will ensure that there are no excuses for skipping your routine! If you work, make a date to meet her at a track or at the gym before you head home. Knowing she’s there waiting for you will mean you cannot be a no show!
Volunteer to coach your child’s team. As you’re showing your team how to play the game, you’ll be getting in plenty of fitness yourself. Bonus? You’ll be spending lots of quality time with your kids! Get there before they report for practice to run through the drills yourself first.
Don’t give up. Sometimes, a busy schedule can get the best of you, no matter how hard you try. But even if you have to skip a few days here and there, don’t give up—every workout brings you closer to a healthier and better you!