It seems like a lot of people have this misconception that stay-at-home moms have lots of free time on their hands. Those of us who are full-time moms know how untrue that is — especially when you throw homeschooling in the mix. I can only imagine the time constraints of the homeschooling moms who work outside the home full- or part-time.
Our busy days often leave us little time for things like hobbies, downtime, taking care of ourselves, and, usually very low on the list of priorities, exercise. However, what many people don’t realize — or choose to ignore — is that taking time to exercise often gives us more energy, helps us sleep better at night, keeps us healthier, and makes us feel better mentally. That’s a great return on your time investment.
Still, the big question is often how to find the time to exercise. For me, the more accurate question has been, how will I make time to exercise? Here are some tips that may help you fit exercise into your day:
1. Get up early. I know this won’t work for everyone, but I’m blessed with kids who sleep late. So, as long as I set my alarm and get up early, I can easily get in an hour long workout before we start our school day.
2. Workout during nap/quiet time or in the evenings. One of my favorite quotes by Leslie Sansone, fitness instructor, is, “The best time to exercise is the time when you’ll do it.” It doesn’t matter when you exercise, as long as you do.
3. Every little bit counts. Maybe you don’t have any time during the day to devote thirty minutes to an hour to working out, but maybe you have snippets of time. Fifteen minutes here and twenty minutes there can be as effective as an hour altogether. Consider buying an inexpensive pedometer and setting a step goal of 7,000-10,000 steps per day. Sometimes just being conscious of being more active will help you reach your goals.
4. Move! As homeschooling moms, a lot of us tend to be very sedentary. Stand up and move around the room as you dictate spelling words. Go to your kids to check their work, rather than having them come to you. Do you have stairs in your house? Walk up and down them three or four times every hour or two. Only have one or two steps? Use them as your “step aerobics” platform.
5. Fidget. You’d be surprised how many calories you can burn by simply bouncing your knees or swinging your legs will you sit. Every little movement counts, so make the most of the bits of time you can find in your day.
6. Include the kids — or the dog. Walk your dog. Take your kids to the park, ride bikes together, take a walk around the neighborhood, or just get outside and play. I know it’s cold right now, but if you’re the brave sort (I’m a total wimp when it comes to cold weather), I’ve heard that you burn more calories when it’s cold because your body is trying to keep warm. Makes sense to me.
What ways have you found to stay active or fit exercise into your life?
Kris can be found writing at Weird Unsocialized Homeschoolers.
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