As busy moms, getting exercise in and being healthy may be a challenging task, but it is important to take care of ourselves as we do with our family. Exercise with a healthy and mindful diet is essential and when you’re busy with work and kids – it’s definitely a challenge.
It’s even more of a challenge when you’re on a budget and short on time. I can personally relate because I work full time and I have a busy morning and evening so finding the time to fit in exercise is not an easy task. I’ve outlined 5 steps to starting a healthier daily routine that I go back to when I get off track, or when I am asked how to get onto a healthier daily routine.
Commit and know your “why”
This is the biggest and most important thing. You need to know why you are doing this for yourself. You may want to start exercising because you want to shed some pounds or be more active. An exact goal is best as you can have a starting point and strive towards something better. For example, you want to lose 2 pounds a week. Record your current weight and weigh yourself the following week. If you lose 2 pounds, set another goal. If you don’t reach it, assess what you did that week and see what you can change.
Figure out what you enjoy and make time
You will only do things you enjoy doing. You can always try something new but you should always start with something you can stick to. Think about what you’ve done in the past, and see if it is something you can incorporate back into your life again. Personally, I find that with my busy schedule, I can only workout in the morning. So, I set my alarm for the absolute earliest time I can fit in my workout.
Find a program or routine
If you need an idea, a workout program that is already laid out is a good place to start. If you enjoy something like running, walking or cycling, you can set goals each day such as the distance or amount of time to do those things. I personally enjoy a workout program that are less than 30 minutes since that is the amount of time I can set for myself to do something. One of my favorite fitness gurus is Dr. Sara Solomon. I have done her HIIT workouts and they are awesome. I am also part of her TeamSS program, but she has some free full length exercise videos as well. In addition, she also has some very useful vlogs about intermittent fasting and healthy recipe videos as well. Another favorite of mine is Jessica Smith, and I’ve done many of her walking workouts. They’re great for those who need something low impact.
Plan out your meals each day
Being healthy also means eating better. I personally do not like restriction. I am more of enjoying the “junk food” in moderation with the majority of my diet being focused on healthier choices such as more fruit as snacks and incorporating veggies at each meal. Planning out your meals will help you stay on track and not to mention save a lot of money on food each week. A good starting point is to list some healthy snacks to have throughout the day, followed by meals. Breakfast meals can be repeated during the week, and lunch and dinners can be as simple as making sure you have a protein, starch and vegetable within the meals. I would aim at having 4 dishes planned for the week that you would make for dinner, and can be eaten again for lunch the following day. At the end of the week, enjoy a day off and go out to eat. Make a healthy, mindful choice, of course!
Document your progress
Invest in a journal or even a blog that you can share your progress. You may even meet other people who have similar goals and can keep each other accountable. When you document your progress, you will be able to see how far you’ve come from where you started. It is a great way to stay motivated and on track. Another way to document your progress is by joining or even creating a Facebook group where you can share your progress with other members of the group. I’ve personally done this, and it is motivating to see what others are doing, and to really come together as everyone in the group has similar goals!