Fitting in Fitness as a Parent

Before I was a mom, I was always saying I was busy.  I never seemed to have time to work out or get to the gym, but I always seemed to have time for lunch dates and happy hours…funny how that works.  I made so many excuses, and the truth of the matter is that I actually did have time back then – I just never made it a priority.

Now that I’m a parent, I have a whole new level of busy.  Having a child adds so many more responsibilities to your plate, and it’s even harder to find time for yourself, especially when they’re young.  As Abbie has gotten older, it’s gotten a little easier to manage things.

As you guys know, I’ve been really working at making my health and fitness a priority in my life.  It definitely is a challenge, but there are two things that have helped me immensely.

Abbie in Mom's Shoes
Sometimes she wears my shoes too…


The first is pretty simple – PLAY.  Abbie loves being outside and would probably spend every minute out there if I let her.  She’s been known to hand us our shoes to get us to take her outside…and we’ve had to hide hers so she doesn’t clamor to go outside when it’s pouring rain!   She especially loves the playground, but she’s warming up to the pool and even loves just walking with us.  Sometimes she just wants to run around in the big grassy area near our home.  Every time I take her out, I make the effort to really play with her rather than just supervise.  I chase her around the grass and the playground.  I throw the ball back and forth.  I push her on the swing, and help her learn to kick in the pool.  It so important to me that she be active.  I hated exercise of every kind as a kid, and I think that’s why it took me so long to get my butt in gear.  I never want her to have any of those issues.

The second thing?  Utilizing alone time.  This is a huge one for me, and one of those instances that being a working mom is actually a huge help.  See, since I’m at work all day, I get a one hour lunch break all to myself.  It’s pretty easy to eat lunch at my desk while I’m working, so rather than use my lunch break to eat, I use it to be active.  Most days I hit the gym downstairs, but on days like yesterday when there’s gorgeous weather, I’ll take a walk outside.  If it’s a day I need to run errands, I’ll power walk through stores or try to walk as much as possible during the errands.  I find that every bit helps, and that little bit of exercise invigorates me for the rest of the day.  Now, I realize this isn’t easy for everyone – you don’t all get an hour to yourselves during the day…but what about at night?  Abbie is usually in bed by 8:10 at the latest, so now that it stays light outside for longer, that’s a great time to get outside and be active.

Fitbit 6.2
Yesterday’s steps – I took two walks yesterday, one at lunch, and one after Abbie was in bed!

I’m sure there are TONS more ideas out there, and I’d love to hear yours!  How do you prioritize and fit in fitness?  Non-parents, I’d love your ideas too!

About Jess

About Jess

Jess Beer is a full-time working mom of two girls who writes about motherhood, wellness, easy meals and style.

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12 Responses

  1. kudos to you for being able to get more exercise at night after Abbie goes to bed. I’m so spent at that time of day I’ve given up on trying 😉

  2. You have seriously been so so awesome and so motivating!! You guys with your steps and walking and all of it, I am always impressed! You are inspiring me to walk more more more!

    1. Thanks so much! I don’t run, so walking is the next best thing…people sometimes forget just how beneficial walking is. It’s been awesome for me!

  3. I have 2 littles (3 and 1) and I also work 2 days a week. September of last year I started taking steps to be a healthier me. Mostly b/c I was feeling pretty crumby and I could not keep up with the demands of my little family. I was very limited on the ‘being active’ part as a severe knee injury and following surgery means I have to be very careful and keep everything I do low impact. Well I started using it as a excuse. Not anymore!! I can’t count points or watch every thing I eat. I tried that numerous times. I started something called Trim Healthy Mama. Basically a huge lifestyle change. LOTS of big changes but it has completely changed my life! I have energy, I have my health under control and I’m down 60 lbs! I have no problem keeping active now! Walking (by myself or with the family), running around the backyard or the playground and now I have a bike trailer that I can use to take my girls biking too. Today we biked 11 km with no trouble at all 😀
    You are doing awesome, keep it up!!!! You will get there and I can’t wait to read more about your journey!

    1. That’s amazing! So happy for you that you took steps to take control – it’s so important to take care of ourselves, too! Thanks for your support!

  4. i worked out 4-5 times a week before I had M—-it was crazy. Now I’ve had to bump “fitness” up on the priority list, and other things (like blogging) have take a backseat. I’ve tried to go to a yoga class about 3 times a week and have been pretty good about it for the past 7-8 months. I’ve had to be pretty creative about getting to classes—my mom watches M 3 afternoons per week (I hide in my makeshift office usually haha), and usually once a week I sneak out around 4pm and go to a yoga class. Then 1 morning a week she usually comes over early just because, and I go to a class, and then I try to go to 1 on the weekends. It’s been a lot more challenging to manage since i got pregnant since I can only go to the slower paced classes, but most weeks I’ve made it work. I also chase a toddler constantly and you’re so right–it’s a workout! I’ve only gained 1lb with this pregnancy and I’m almost 18 weeks (OMG). Itt’s crazy.

    1. Thank goodness your mom moved to Texas! Otherwise, who knows if you’d get time.

      You reminded me that I really need to get to a yoga class or something soon, too 🙂

  5. I’m right there with you. It’s funny how I never had time BEFORE Kenley and now am somehow able to make time for exercise when I’m a million times busier as a mom. It’s definitely a matter of priorities and for me realizing I needed to be healthy for my daughter is what has inspired me to make time.

I’m Jess! I’m a working mama of two sweet sisters living in the DC area. This is my space to share inspiration, real stories of working motherhood, recipes, style, and more! I can’t start my day without coffee and always try to show the real side of motherhood – the good and the challenging. I’m so glad you’re here – thanks for following along on my journey!

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