Today is going to be a tough day... Actually, it is going to be a tough week! I am in school (yes, along with being a new mom!) and this is the last week of classes before finals. I have procrastinated on my end-of-term papers and now I am paying for it! So, I just finished a 2 hour online math test (thankfully my son took a great morning nap through the entire thing!) and now I am getting ready to fold laundry. All of this craziness has me thinking about how difficult it is to find the time to work out - especially for those of you who work outside of the home, are in school, or have multiple children. So often, life gets in the way of taking care of ourselves - and that is what exercise is - taking care of ourselves. Most of us will always find time to take a shower, or eat dinner... we also need to find time to exercise and do something that makes us happy every day! Whether you prefer to ride a bike or take a walk outside, or go to a gym and lift weights - we need to MAKE the time for ourselves to be healthy. It has to be a priority, otherwise it most likely will not happen. The healthier we are, the better moms we will be.

Some tips on how to make time for exercise:
(1) Make an appointment - and keep it! At my gym, I have to make an appointment to drop my son off at the Kid's Club. It can sometimes be inconvenient, but it helps me keep my workout plans, instead of having other things come up. Even if you don't belong to a gym, try to set up a time with yourself to workout. Whether it be during your child's nap, or after they go to bed in the evening, try to stick with it.
(2) Do several shorter exercise routines spread out during the day. If you can't do thirty minutes or one hour at once, then break it down into 15-minute intervals. There is nothing wrong with doing 10 or 15 minutes of cardio now, and then doing 10 or 15 more minutes of cardio later in the day.
(3) Include your children! If your kids are old enough, go for a family bike ride or walk around the neighborhood. If you have a new baby - strap on an infant carrier and get even more exercise by carrying him around on your chest!
(4) Make it count! Ever find yourself getting on the elliptical machine and reading a magazine or talking to a friend while "working out"? Although this is better than sitting on the couch, you really aren't going to get a true cardiovascular workout if you can speak with ease to someone. During your cardio, you should not be able to say a full sentence without having to take a breath. Conversing with someone should be difficult - so why do it? Focus on that exercise - pushing yourself that much harder will help you to burn more calories in less time! That is soooo worth it!
(5) Do total-body workouts. By working the legs at the same time at the biceps, for example, you will burn more calories in less time. A great example of this is doing a stationary lunge combined with a bicep curl. Holding 5 - 10 pound weights in each hand, lunge down, doing a bicep curl at the same time. I highly recommend Gillian Michael's "30 Day Shred" videos - she is great at combining muscle groups to get a great total-body workout in less than 30 minutes. I also recommend magazines like "Self" and "Fitness" - every month they have great total body workout moves, plus some fun to read health, beauty, and sex information too!

Well, I don't know about you but I feel better already. It is 4:00pm and I have finished my workout for the day. Use the above tips to make sure you are getting time for yourself every day! You'll be glad you did... and the scale will reflect it in no time!


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