Top 10 Tips To Get Fit and Stay Motivated
By Nancy Karabaic, C.C.S.
As moms, we are always thinking of others before ourselves: husbands, kids and then if you’re lucky, time for you! No wonder it can be hard to lose your pregnancy weight and keep it off! Here are 10 tips to get you started on your fitness journey and motivate you to keep going and do more!
1) Exercise first thing in the morning. There are no other conflicts early in the morning. Even if you aren’t a morning person, try it! Studies show that early morning exercisers are the ones who are most consistent with their workouts. Consistency is what brings the results you want. This also takes care of the “no time” excuse. There is always time in the morning if you are willing to get up a bit earlier. Your results will make it worth it!
2) Have short term and long term fitness goals. As Steven Covey, author of The Seven Habits Of Highly Efficient People says, “Begin with the end in mind.” What do you want to achieve with your fitness, both short-term and long term? Whether it’s fitting into those smaller size jeans or running a 5k, having goals will help you focus on what you need to do with your exercise program. If you aren’t sure what your goals are or how to get started, hire a personal trainer. A trainer will help you set realistic goals and give you the steps to get you there!
3) Do exercise you enjoy. Exercise doesn’t have to be boring or painful. If you are having a hard time figuring out what you’ll like, think back to what you did when you were younger. Did you ride your bike? Swim? Jump rope? You can still do all of these things as an adult. Try new things and make variety a part of your program. Keep it fun and you’ll keep at it!
4) Reach out to your family and friends for support. The more support you have, the easier it will be to keep to your exercise program. Find friends to exercise with each day. Walk with your family after dinner. Join a moms’ fitness class so you’ll have other moms to exercise with on a regular basis. Find a local group (like a running club) and join.
5) Play with your kids! If you are a regular at the playground, you can still get in your exercise. Get on the swings and pump your legs! Run around the playground with your kids. Your kids love it and you are getting exercise – a win/win for everyone! You can also do squats, lunges and tricep dips while you are watching your kids play. Team up with other moms and have one mom watch the kids while the other goes for a walk. Be creative and make it fun!
6) What are you doing for exercise? There are three parts of a proper exercise program: cardio (for example: walking, biking, running), strength training and flexibility. All of these, as well as abdominal work, need to be a part of your program. Though it sounds like a lot, you can fit it all in if you do your abs and stretching as part of your warm-down. You can also split up your workouts in 3 10 minute sessions a day. Studies show this is just as effective for weight loss and fitness.
7) Eat right. All the exercise in the world won’t help if you aren’t eating right. Make the changes you need to make slowly. Try one new dietary change a week and see how that goes. There are many varieties of good food out there – be adventurous!
8) Exercise gives you extra energy. Studies show that a 30 minute exercise session will give you 1-2 extra hours of energy. Who doesn’t need or want that?
9) Get de-stressed and feel good! Exercise is a wonderful way to de-stress and elevate your mood. What mom doesn’t want to look and feel healthier?
10) Exercise is time for you. It’s very easy to let others take up all your time and energy. Exercise is a gift for yourself because it’s a way to keep yourself healthy and happy. If you can make it just your time once or twice a week, you’ll have some precious time to just relax and enjoy!
Nancy Karabaic is a mom, certified personal trainer and tri-athlete. To learn more on great fitness advice, visit www.nancykarabaic.com