Staying active is a challenge for busy parents, who often have a lot of responsibilities to balance. It is practically a full time job keeping up with the kids schedule, not to mention your full time job! But, staying active and healthy is essential for your physical and mental health. It will help you be the best version of yourself on all fronts! Here are some quick tips for busy parents on how to stay active:
Make physical activity a priority
It sounds cliche but it is true! Just like your work and other responsibilities, physical activity must be a high priority. If it is not blocked out on your calendar, it will be the first thing that gets dropped when time is running low and you are tired. Create a block in your calendar each day (or even three days a week) to prioritize physical activity! It can start small with a slot to get in a twenty or thirty minute walk. And make sure nothing less important creeps into that time!
Add in activity to your daily routine
You can find opportunities to stay active throughout your normal day, such as taking the stairs instead of the elevator or doing a few jumping jacks while you wait for your coffee to brew. There’s also a plethora of stand-up desks if you’re confined to a desk job during the day. Many employers will help fund standing desks, so talk to HR about your options. Find ways around the obstacles in your way and start small! Go the long way to your car or park farther away to get a few more steps in.
Get your kids involved
Children love to be active and they can help you stay motivated. On the weekends, plan family activities such as hiking, biking, or playing sports together. Especially as the summer rolls around, get outside with the whole family! Do you have little ones? Utilize the many different options for strollers or baby carriers!
Take advantage of technology
There are many apps and online resources available to help you stay active, including workout videos, fitness trackers, and virtual classes. Youtube has tons of free resources that will guide you through strength training or cardio workouts. There are free community wellness pages on Facebook that are fantastic for free resources and accountability.
Our community favorites are:
Health & Wellness for Lisle/Naperville Area Women
Health & Wellness for Wheaton/Glen Ellyn Area Women
Find a workout buddy
Having a workout buddy can help keep you motivated and accountable – it also makes physical activity way more fun! Find a friend or family member who also wants to stay active, and plan activities together. Adding a social component to your physical activity is also good for mental health.
Don’t forget to rest
While it’s important to stay active, it’s also important to rest. Listen to your body and make sure you’re giving it enough time to recover and recharge so you are able to perform all the tasks you need to!
Remember, every little bit counts
You don’t have to spend hours at the gym to stay active. Even just a few minutes of physical activity each day can make a big difference.
Staying active as a busy parent is possible with some planning and dedication. Some seasons of life will allow more space for activity, and sometimes it may just be 10 or 15 minutes. That is OK. Find small wins to start, and progress over time.
By making physical activity a priority, incorporating it into your daily routine, and finding creative ways to stay active, you can maintain your physical and mental health and model healthy living for your children!
Need More Support?
If you are looking for someone to guide you on this path, our team would love to connect you with a Coach to discuss strategies for success!