As a mum, it can be hard to find time for yourself, but staying in shape can really help your mental and physical wellbeing.

Whether you used to hit the gym or played competitive sports before you had kids, your growing family doesn’t mean it all has to stop. Here are some more manageable ways to integrate fitness into your routine that don’t involve spending hours on a treadmill.

Home Gym Equipment

Most of us don’t have space for a full-blown home gym in our houses. Luckily, you don’t need a dedicated room for your fitness activities. Storing things like resistance bands, weights and a yoga mat is easy, as they can be tucked away in a corner or at the bottom of a cupboard. Beginners might want to start with smaller weights between 2kg and 5kg, whereas more experienced fitness fanatics can go right ahead and invest in 20kg or 40kg hex dumbbells.

Bodyweight Exercises

Some of the most effective exercises you can do at home don’t even require equipment. Using your own body weight to work out can give you real results and pose a lower risk of injury than when working with heavier weights. You can fit in some squats, press-ups and lunges whenever you have a moment to spare, helping to keep your body feeling strong and toned. Whether you decide to set aside half an hour after the kids have gone to bed or make the most of the time when they’re eating their lunch, bodyweight exercises can be squeezed into even the smallest windows of opportunity.

Family Fun

Keeping fit doesn’t have to be a solo activity. In fact, it’s just as important for your kids to stay active throughout the day as it is for you. These days many children are quickly being swept in by video games, so encouraging them to get outside and move their bodies is key. This could involve a family bike ride, throwing around a Frisbee or a day at the swimming pool. Make sure you ask your kids what kind of sports they’re interested in because while you might like to jog around the park, children might prefer a skipping rope.

Keep a Schedule

If you don’t make a plan, it can be easy to forget that exercise is meant to be a part of your life. It doesn’t have to be a strict timetable, but having no plan at all is setting yourself up to

fail. Don’t be too hard on yourself if you don’t manage to stick to activities every day, you might end up doing a little more at the weekend or have a week off when you need it.

When planning fitness activities with the kids, a timetable can work really well, as they’ll have something to look forward to. If your children are a little more reluctant, then you could incentivise them with a reward at the end of the week for doing all their exercises. This could be an extra hour of computer time or their favourite dessert after dinner.

Disclosure: This is a partnered post

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