Now I’m a fully fledged school mother (with my first shift on canteen duty now under my belt), I’m kind of getting into the swing of things. What I’ve learned very quickly is that my days are even busier now!
So what happens to the workout schedule when life gets super busy?
Here’s how to squeeze a workout schedule into a super busy mother’s day!
We’re all up early in the morning. I make breakfast, school lunch and snacks and get everyone dressed. I might even squeeze in a shower if I’m lucky. Then it’s off to do school drop-off.
After that, I try to get some activities happening at home for my active twin toddlers, then do some work.
Like most mothers, I’m a multi-tasker. So in between my activities, I’ll be doing washing, cleaning and nailing the chores. You know the drill, right?
Before you know it, it’s back to school to do school pick-up. Of course when we get home it’s afternoon tea, preparing for dinner, bathing the boys, homework, reading time and clean-up. It never stops. And what about the afternoons when we have swimming or sport… it’s go, go, go!
I’m not writing this to say poor me or to whinge about how busy life is. I love being busy. It’s when I really thrive!
I’m writing this to say I understand the challenges of being a mother even more now. Sure, life is busy when the kids are young. And there is a level of tiredness and exhaustion that only a new mum really gets.
But as our children get older, there seems to be an even greater need for us to give our families more time. Whether it be to help with homework and as the family taxi taking them to sports or music. Or simply sharing quality family time to ensure you’re in touch with your children and their needs and challenges.
What does this mean for us as individuals? Just a few short weeks in to school life, I can see that this can make it even trickier for me to have the time for me that I so desperately need to look after myself.
So how do I now fit my workout schedules into my day?
Preparation and Planning
Like good workout schedules, a lot of mothering duties benefit from preparation and planning.
I’ve quickly discovered that preparation and planning are the key to success. When the twins were younger, I would try to prepare their food at the beginning of the week. That way, I had their meals for the week pretty much sorted out.
I’ve taken that pre-preparing to a whole new level. Rather than only preparing for the twins, I try to do it as much as I can for the whole family. I’ll have a few hours of prep on the weekend that involves doing as much as I can to prepare for the week’s meals ahead of time.
It might be creating pesto that I’ll use in a few dishes (see Nadia’s delicious recipe in our Body Beyond Birth program. It’s a great one to have up your sleeve). Or it might be slicing and dicing meat. Or making a soup and sticking it in the freezer.
I’ll also try to place snacks into small containers so that I can just grab them for the boys (or myself) as I’m running out the door.
If I plan everything in advance, everything is under control (for the most part!).
Dress for Success
I have to take advantage of any window that presents itself to exercise. So I wear my workout clothes so I’m ready to go.
For example, if I know I’m going to be home for the day, I will get up and put on my workout gear.
This means that whenever I get time to fit in exercise from my workout schedules, I’m all set to go.
You see, workout schedules don’t have to be at a set time or even in a big set to be effective. I grab the chance to exercise when I can. It might be when the twins have a nap. Or perhaps I can workout outside while they’re playing in the sand. Or I could even walk around the oval when the boys are at sport.
If I’m dressed and ready, my head is already in the game as I’ve mentally prepared myself that I expect to fit a workout into my day.
If I’ve been out during the day (and obviously not able to wear my workout gear), as soon as I get home I’ll throw my workout gear on. Out come the sports bra, t-shirt, shorts/leggings and runners. Everything I need to workout hits my body when I hit the door.
I find that if I get dressed but don’t put my shoes on, or if I think I’ll put my sports bra on when I’m just about to exercise, I almost give myself a reason not to exercise. The more prepared I am physically, the more prepared I am mentally and I just make time to exercise!
Being dressed for the part helps me meet the goals in my workout schedules without giving me an excuse to skip it.
A little bit of this and a little bit of that
It can seem impossible to fit full workout schedules in some days.
You might be tired, sick, super busy or perhaps even injured. It can be a real challenge. My philosophy is that I will always try to do a little bit of something every day. Every workout is a drop towards the workout schedules bucket.
That might mean I just set aside some time to stretch. Or perhaps I can only do a short hard core abs series. My main aim here is to ensure I keep up the great habits I’ve created where I do a workout of some kind nearly every day.
The other thing that’s important to remember is that if you can only fit in 10 mins of exercise in the morning, but you can then do 10 or 15 mins at night that’s 20-25 minutes in total. It all adds up and makes a difference! 10 minutes of movement is much better than 10 mins of sitting doing nothing on the couch.
I’m not saying that I have all the answers to the challenge of finding that elusive me time in my day. These are just a few tips that have helped me tick the things off my workout schedules throughout my day.
I’d love to learn from others and hear how you fit me time into your life. We can share stories and all learn from each other!
Want to add simple things you can do throughout the day to your workout schedules?
Why not check out the Body Beyond Birth YouTube channel? We’ve got some great ideas for you to try. Or if this is your first time with us, why not take advantage of our 7 day free trial of Body Beyond Birth and see what you can do to workout on even the busiest day.