ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

Easy Exercise Ideas for Moms with Young Children

Updated on February 18, 2014
shawna.wilson profile image

Shawna is a registered nurse raising a family in the beautiful desert of Arizona.

 

As a stay at home mom with a baby and a toddler, it's often difficult to find time to work out. My kids can't be left alone, so I have to find ways to work out with them by my side. I don't have a treadmill or any other exercise equipment at home, so my indoor options are limited. Since the weather is cooling off, now is the perfect time to get into the swing of a work-out routine. I've come up with some work out ideas for moms with youngsters. So grab your kids and get ready for some exercise!

Work out DVDs

 

Who says you can't afford a personal trainer? Work-out DVDs are great for moms because they can be done at home at any time of day. There are thousands of work-out DVDs to choose from including every type of exercise. Whether you prefer Pilates, yoga, cardio, step aerobics, jazzercise, or whatever, there is a DVD for you. One of my favorites right now is Crunch Fat Burning Pilates with Ellen Barrett. It's a cardio workout with Pilates based toning. I always feel great after I workout to this DVD.

Start your search at the local library. Work out DVDs can be checked out at the library, so don't feel like you have to go out and spend $50 on a few new DVDs. Try the library's copy first, and if you find one you'd really like to own, buy it. The great thing about using work out DVDs is that when you get bored with one, you can easily switch to another.

Don't put off exercise because of your kids...bring them along!
Don't put off exercise because of your kids...bring them along!

Walk or Run

If the weather is nice, another great option is to walk or run with the kids in the stroller. My kids love to go for walks, so this is an acceptable and popular form of exercise at our house. We usually stop at the park at the end of a walk for added fun. I used mapmyrun.com to map out a two mile loop in my neighborhood. Knowing how far I've walked gives me a sense of accomplishment when I'm done. If you have older children, let them ride their bikes while you walk or run.

Many of the parks in my area have walking paths around children's playgrounds. If your older kids enjoy going to the park, let them play while you walk laps around the playground. You can keep a close eye on the kids and exercise at the same time. Invite other moms with children to join you so your kids have someone to play with and you have someone to chat with while you walk. Make it a fun outing for everyone.

A family bike ride is fun for everyone.
A family bike ride is fun for everyone.

Ride a Bike

Just like going for walks, my kids love bike rides. If you have older kids, they can ride their bikes along with you. If your kids are too young to ride on their own, invest in a carriage that can be pulled behind your bike while you ride. The kids can sit safely inside the carriage and enjoy the ride. Pulling the carriage will make your work-out even harder, increasing your heart rate and burning more calories.

If you only have one young child, you can buy a seat that attaches to the bike, either behind your seat or on the bar in front of your seat. Your child will enjoy a fun bike ride while you enjoy a healthy work-out. Map out a route around your neighborhood and surrounding areas. Find local bike paths for a change of scenery.

Biking is a great way to get exercise, have fun, and save money on gas. If you live within a couple miles of the grocery store, bank, library, and post office, use your bike to run errands. Combine entertainment for the kids, running errands, and an exercise routine all in one. Biking regularly can help you lose weight and improve your overall health. Always make sure everyone riding wears a helmet.

Sign up for a Mommy and Me exercise class.
Sign up for a Mommy and Me exercise class.

Join a Moms' Fitness Group

Check your city's website for fitness classes or groups designed specifically for moms with young children. Many hospitals offer mommy and baby exercise classes for moms with babies under one year old. The classes encourage interaction between baby and mom while providing a form of exercise at the same time.

I've also seen organized groups of moms walking with strollers at the local park. They sing children's songs as they walk, stopping periodically to do sit ups, lunges, push ups, or other strengthening exercises on the grass. I'll have to admit it was a little strange to watch a group of grown women scurrying through the park singing "Twinkle, Twinkle." But hey, the moms were getting exercise while connecting with other mothers. Who cares if it looks a little goofy to passersby?

Groups like this might already exist in your community, so do some digging. If you come up empty handed, start a group of your own. Stroller Strides and Stroller Fit are organizations that specialize in setting up mommy walking groups. Check their websites to see if there's a group in your area.

Join a Gym with a Childcare Center

 

Many gyms and fitness centers have on site childcare centers. You have to be a member of the gym to take advantage of this option, which can cost anywhere from $25-$60 per month. If you're willing to spend that money each month on a membership, this is a fabulous option for working out. The kids can hang out in the fun kids' zone while you spend an hour or so working out. The number of hours your children can be left in the childcare area is usually limited to about two hours. You must also remain on the premises after dropping your kids off. Don't try to sneak next door for a caramel frappuccino!

As a member of a gym, you can join fitness classes, such as spinning, step aerobics, Pilates, ab workouts, yoga, dance, and more. You can also take advantage of the gym's exercise equipment such as free weights, treadmills, rowing machines, ellipticals, stair steppers, and stationary bicycles. Take your iPod and enjoy some of your favorite tunes while you work out on the machines. Some fitness centers also have basketball, volleyball, racquetball, and tennis courts, in addition to swimming pools. All of these options offer fun and interactive ways to get some exercise.

Ask Someone to Watch the Kids

If you prefer to exercise without your kids nipping at your heels, schedule work outs a few times per week when someone else can take care of them. Find a friend or neighbor who is also interested in working out and exchange childcare with each other. While you work out, your neighbor can watch your kids, and vice versa. If you are willing to pay someone, hire a babysitter who can watch your children three or four days per week at the same time each day. If you're committed to paying a babysitter, you may be more likely to stick to an exercise schedule.

If you live close to family members, such as grandparents, aunts, or uncles, ask if they'd be willing to watch the kids for an hour here and there. It never hurts to ask for help. Another option is to exercise after your significant other gets home from work. Let him have some time with the kiddos while you take off for a quick walk or run.

Spend a little time each week exercising. It will do great things for your physical and emotional health. If you as a mom feel good, it will rub off on your family. If you have any other ideas for easy workouts for moms, post a comment below. I'd love to hear some new ideas!

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    • shawna.wilson profile imageAUTHOR

      shawna.wilson 

      7 years ago from Arizona

      mommamia-tell me about it! By the end of the day I'm so exhausted, all I want to do is sit on the couch!

    • profile image

      mommamia 

      7 years ago

      I have two toddlers, and to grade schoolers. I so wish that chasing kids kept me in shape. Instead it wears me out:)

    • profile image

      hemustincrease 

      7 years ago

      All great ideas. We love to get out walking and biking. I have to confess i got a dvd workout thing but it has been unopened for nearly 6 months. I am definitely more of an outdoors exerciser. Our walkydog came today also. So now i can hook up the two little ones and the dog and my big girl rides her own bike. :) I keep contemplating the gym but am not yet convinced i would actually go enough to make it worthwhile.

    • profile image

      Momof2 

      8 years ago

      You talked a bit about DVDs as they are so convenient. Check out Tone and Tune (www.toneandtune.com). It has 3 workouts to get mom back into shape but includes musical education and other early learning for baby at the same time. Good use of time for mom and baby!

    • shawna.wilson profile imageAUTHOR

      shawna.wilson 

      9 years ago from Arizona

      RGraf-that sounds like so much fun. We just bought a bike trailer for our kids, and they love it.

    • RGraf profile image

      Rebecca Graf 

      9 years ago from Wisconsin

      We are planning on getting bikes in the Spring for everyone in the family. They are looking forward to it.

    • profile image

      Mom 

      10 years ago

      No wonder you look so thin and fit! I did not know you were exercising at home, which is something I need to be more motivated to do. Keep up the great work-physically, and "hubbing".

    • shawna.wilson profile imageAUTHOR

      shawna.wilson 

      10 years ago from Arizona

      MrsEmmaLee-What an inspiration you are! Thanks for sharing your story :)

    • MrsEmmaLee profile image

      MrsEmmaLee 

      10 years ago from West Central Georgia

      Great hub (again)... As some of you know I was in a very bad car wreck nearly 3 years ago. I went through a lot of PT (physical therapy) to learn to (kinda) walk again. Just last week I had to go for an evaluation and were they ever surprised by my progress. LOL, I had to laugh, because my ONLY "equipment" is our grand-daughter, Kaydence. She's nearly 20 pounds now, but by "using" her as weight, I've been able to steadily increase my strength. As she grew, so did my ability. She sits in the crook of my ankles and I do leg lifts! With her adorable help, my doctors are amazed at my progress. Besides, even if it hurts, hearing her giggle as we lift is enough to make me do ... just a few more.

      Wishing you love and laughter

    • shawna.wilson profile imageAUTHOR

      shawna.wilson 

      10 years ago from Arizona

      Well, thanks to Bethany and Blogger Mom for teaching me something new...I had no idea there were exercise channels on cable TV! That's awesome. What an easy and flexible way to work out at home. I love it!

      Dancing around with the kids sounds really fun, Dottie :) As for lending my children to Ryan...I must have been in one of those "will I ever get 30 seconds alone to myself" kind of moods!

    • Dottie1 profile image

      Dottie1 

      10 years ago from MA, USA

      Fantastic Hub!  When my kids were younger I would put on music and just dance around.  Kids love to do this.  I still do this only now without the kids!  I am sooo lucky now! 

      BTW Shawna, you are a very brave soul to lend your children out to Ryan!!!!  LOL:)

    • Blogger Mom profile image

      Blogger Mom 

      10 years ago from Northeast, US

      Great Hub! Another thing I like to do is take advantage of the free workouts included in my cable package. That way I can change them around if I get bored of one. And yes, I'm also surprised that I don't get enough exercise chasing after the kids...

    • Moon Daisy profile image

      Moon Daisy 

      10 years ago from London

      That's a great hub, thanks for the ideas!

    • shawna.wilson profile imageAUTHOR

      shawna.wilson 

      10 years ago from Arizona

      Yes, chasing the kids around 24/7 should count for something! Thanks for reading Uninvited Writer :)

    • Uninvited Writer profile image

      Susan Keeping 

      10 years ago from Kitchener, Ontario

      I'm sure being mom to small children is all the exercise a person needs :) Well done.

    • shawna.wilson profile imageAUTHOR

      shawna.wilson 

      10 years ago from Arizona

      Hi Bethany-I can definitely relate! I have a hard time making myself use my precious free time without kids to work out. So if I exercise when the kids are awake, then I still get my free time when they are asleep to do whatever I want...like writing hubs :) Thanks so much for reading!

      Ryan-you can borrow my kids for a day or two if you'd really like to know what it's like ;)

    • Goddess Bethany profile image

      Goddess Bethany 

      10 years ago from Oregon

      You must have been reading my mind. I have a grade schooler and a toddler, both who are extremely attention-hungry and do not like to give me a minute of time to myself. However, I utilize Comcast's ExerciseTV OnDemand menu, and usually get my working out in when my son goes down for his nap. This is the easiest!

    • Ryan Hupfer profile image

      Ryan Hupfer 

      10 years ago from San Francisco, CA

      Shawna, you are a true HubMobster...another awesome Hub! I have enough trouble now getting a workout in, so I can't even imagine how much harder it is once you have some kids running around.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)