Monday, July 9, 2012

How to fit in exercise with newborns and toddlers

I've been getting the same questions a lot lately from other moms:  How did you loose all that baby weight? How can you have time to exercise when you are taking care of your kids all day?

The following quote pretty much is the answer.

"PLAY with your kids.  Playing can be the single best way to really get to know your kids.
Get down on the floor, follow their lead, and PLAY with them."
~Lyle Perry

Do you need some ideas on how to get your exercise in while playing with your kids?  It is all about unstructured play.  If you have a newborn, get on the floor with her, and roll around, crawl, laugh.  Just get moving.  Hold him in your arms and dance around.  If you feel like you aren't moving because you are so tired, then that is more reason to get moving.  It will give you energy.

Lay on your back, have baby on your belly, and raise your knees up.  Now raise up baby over your head and lower down again, keeping your legs raised.  This will work your arms, back, abdominal, and thighs.

Do you have a toddler that has so much energy that you get tired just by watching them?  I have those days too.  There are so many things you can do with your tot that will get you moving, having fun, and enjoying time with your child.
  • Play tag -Depending on the age of your child, tag may just be chasing them around and around until someone gets caught, and you will just do that over and over again.
  • Freestyle dancing - turn the radio on, and dance like a crazy person with your child.  Do this for a few songs and I promise you will feel your heart beating faster
  • Dance and freeze - a variation of the previous bullet.  Turning it more into a game. Also teaches your child how to follow directions
  • Skipping - Teach your tot how to skip.  When was the last time you skipped?  I bet its been a while.
  • Jumping Rope - There are a lot of games that you can play with a jump rope.  If your child is really young, you can lay the rope on the floor and jump over it from side to side. Teach them their left from their right.
  • Hopping - An older toddler will be appreciative of learning this one.  Once you have the basics down, count how many hops you can do in a row without losing your balance.
  • Hula Hoop - Your toddler may not be able to hula, but you can use a hula hoop to jump through, crawl around, learn inside/outside, and when your child is tired, you can try to hula yourself.  =)
What are some ways that you play with your child?  Post your ideas in the comments below.