4 ways to exercise with your kids

WRAC(1)

After the kids come, “you” time becomes their time and you feel stuck. How are you supposed to get a workout when you are constantly feeding, chasing and diaper changing? One effective method that many moms have used and been successful with is using their child as a workout tool. Unsure what we mean? Keep reading!

1. Legs with baby

If your child is not yet walking on their own, they may still be little enough to cradle and use as a weight. As long as you feel comfortable, find a solid piece of ground at your home or in the park on a nice day, hold onto your baby securely and do 10 to 12 squats, three to four rounds. Take breaks as needed and make sure your baby is comfortable. Other movements you can do are lunges, plies, and calf raises. Professional personal trainer Kristen McGee and Parents Magazine combine forces and demonstrate some great movements in this video that incorporate your baby.

2. Upper body with baby

Now, don’t forget your upper body! It’s important to work your entire body, so target a couple of areas like triceps, shoulders, back and biceps. Check out this video to give you a few examples.

3. Abs with baby

After having a baby, an area that many mothers would like to vanquish immediately is that little bit of extra tummy. Don’t worry, it’s natural and with good eating and dedication to exercise, it will disappear. But in the meantime, a couple of movements to target that area are boat pose with baby and boat pose with a twist. This video will demonstrate those moves. Other moves can be plank variations or bird dogs.

4. If your child is moving

So, baby is crawling or walking? Make it a fun game and add in some cardio! Lisa Smith, group fitness coordinator at The Wenatchee Racquet and Athletic Club (WRAC) suggests once “kids are mobile, make it a game of chase or walk to the park; playgrounds are great for adapting exercise.” Not only will your child have fun playing, you are setting a strong example of being an active parent. Another suggestion is investing in a jogging stroller after your doctor has cleared you to exercise again. Read these tips and research joggers before you begin running.

Please remember to be careful and start slow. The importance of your health and your baby’s health outweighs everything else, so talk with your doctor to determine when you can begin again and be aware that your body needs to heal. Read some of these tips about getting back into your exercise routine.

Also, please know these exercises require that your baby is able to hold his head up on his own. It is critical that you approach these exercises cautiously and understand your limits. If you do not feel confident, please work towards these exercises slowly with modified movement with supervision present.

(Photo credit: Pixabay)

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