A new year brings New Year’s resolutions, and for many of us our resolutions are health and fitness related. A survey of 1000 Australians found 69 per cent of us make at least one New Year’s resolution but only a quarter of us will stick to achieving our goals.
Being a busy mum, it can seem impossible to fit in exercise and eat a good diet. I totally hear you when you say you don’t have time. I feel like I don’t either. I have two kids 17 months apart, a husband who works 12 hour days and I myself work from home.
As a former personal trainer and class instructor, not having as much time to invest in myself these days drives me more than a bit bonkers. But I’ve found that if you make it easier, lower the expectations you put on yourself about how often and how long you’ll exercise, and don’t do too many diet changes at once, it’s manageable – and you’re more likely to stick to it.
It really doesn’t take much to make a difference. There are some simple, small changes you can make that will have you looking and feeling better.
1. Incidental exercise
Head out for a walk with the pram and take the long way home (or even better, find the steepest hills!), do some squats while you’re holding your baby, chase your toddler around the house or challenge older kids to a running race in the park – all ways to get some activity in without really trying.
2. Quick workouts anywhere, anytime
You don’t have to have an hour, or make it to a formal session such as a class or bootcamp. Get out with the pram, do a bodyweight workout using the park bench or playground – steps ups, pushups, squats, planks, mountain climbers, run/walks, the possibilities are endless! Maybe invest in a kettle bell or slam ball to use as a weight.
You can also do home workouts while the baby sleeps, or even using an older baby as a weight – make it a game for them! See the ‘get inspired’ section below for some great workout inspiration and ideas.
3. One or two diet changes
Going cold turkey on everything at once is the fastest way to fail! Start by eliminating one or two of your weaknesses (i.e cut down on alcohol and chocolate, or start by replacing your sugary breakfast cereal with oats, or replace white bread with wholegrains). Then, as you get used to that, have a look at what else in your diet you could replace with better choices. Healthy eating and exercise go hand in hand, but diet changes are what will make the most difference to how you look and feel.
If you tell a friend what you’re trying to do you’ll be more likely to stick to it. Spreading the word will make you more accountable, and if you have a workout and/or healthy eating buddy you can egg each other on and keep each other on track.
5. Get inspired
There are hundreds of fit mummies out there that you can connect with to get nutrition inspiration and workout ideas. Try these:
Mad Max Mum – Lauren Patterson (@__laurenkate)
This young mum of two is down to earth about all things mum life, and shares her diet tips and workout inspiration.
Like everyone, I ate a shitload of food & knocked back a few cold beers over the weekend, so it was a good idea to bust out a session in the gym to get ready for another week! Everyone else was at home was asleep so I ducked out to the gym ???? Exercising is amazing for mental clarity & does wonders for anxiety, depression & stress! ✌????️ #fitnessmum #4monthspp #fitnessblogger #gym #health #mentalhealth #mummylife #workout #glhc #postpartumfitness #fitmom #fitnessmotivation #activewear #lornajane #atpscience
Stay Strong Mummy – Kimberley (@staystrongmummy) This Gold Coast-based mum of three in 19 months shares daily workouts, including home workouts, along with nutrition advice. She is one seriously motivated mum!
How do i find the time? ➕ set yourself a goal of how many workouts you want to do per week, I generally stick to three workouts and one longer walk ➕ if you prefer having set days and times, then right them in your diary. Or, if you are happy finding windows of opportunity through the week, do that – but make sure you hit your goal ➕ I spend a lot of time at home with my kids, so I try and think outside the square when it comes to workouts. If your kids take a nap during the day, then try and get the workout done as soon as they are down, the chores can be done after (and I usually find I breeze through them quicker after a quick sweat sesh anyway ????). I also love doing ‘playtime workouts’ when my kids are around me. They generally join in now and again or play around me. I get them snacks, toys, comforters and a drink (when the twins were younger, I’d also have nappies on hand incase I needed to do a quick change!) Prams are a wonderful piece of equipment to workout with. My twins also used to love sitting in the bouncer watching mummy jump around! ➕ If you’re a working mumma, try an earlier start before the kids wake. Waking just 20mins earlier has tremendous results! Now and again I also do an evening workout (I actually love a workout under the stars!) I’ll have my dinner a little later that one night. Getting one done on a Saturday morning is also a refreshing way to kick off the weekend. ➕ 15 minute HIIT workouts DO work and are not NOT a waste of time. I used to only ever run and I thought exercising for less than an hour (5 days a week) was a waste of time. I’m stronger, fitter and leaner now and I’m working out less and eating more! ➕ we make an effort to feed our children five meals a day (breakfast, morning tea, lunch, afternoon tea and dinner) – preparing a ‘lunch box’ for mummy should also be a priority! ➕ Have confidence in your ability!!!! The first few weeks are challenging, but when you get into the swing of things – doing a workout and creating some staple clean, wholefoods 80% of the time will be part of your lifestyle. Your mind and your body will crave it. ✌????️???????? #staystrongmummyblog #strongmumsunite #twinmum #mum A photo posted by KIMBERLEY ✌????️???????????????????????? (@staystrongmummy) on
Fit Mums Motivations – Ellice (@fitmumsmotivation)
Home workouts, workouts involving the kids, outdoor sessions and more.
KB Sugarfree – Katherine (@kbsugarfree )
Nourishing recipes, all sugar free and vegan, along with wholefood restaurant reviews.
This raw satay salad is a summer must – super light, fresh and the dressing is ???? so good. Keep your New Years resolutions on track with the recipe – in my eBook ‘An Easy Guide to Healthy Living’. Available for download via the link in the bio! X FIRST 20 PURCHASES RECEIVE A FREE @criobruoz ‘Maya Blend’ ☺️
Naturallly nutritious – Melanie Lionello (@naturally_nutritious)
Foodie and recipe developer, with her own eCookbook. Her food looks seriously delicious and nutritious!
So, keep it simple. As they say, less is more! You’ll be more positive, better able to tackle mum life and smashing that New Year’s goal.
Do you have any other tips to share?