Plus, 5 Ways to Get More Steps on Your Activity Tracker!
If you read my post about my new monthly mini goal plan (as opposed to New Year’s resolutions, which don’t work), you know that my goals for January include exercising at least 30 minutes a day, five days a week. That can be really difficult with small children. I have a toddler and an infant. I get it. But I strongly believe that it’s important that you, as the mom, continue to take care of your body so that you can better take care of theirs. To help you, I’m going to tell you about my favorite workouts that have worked well for me as a busy mom.
**Links in this post may be affiliate links. This means that if you click that link and purchase the product, I may receive a small compensation. I am, however, committed to honestly assessing the products mentioned. Please read my disclosure policy for more details. **
My Favorite Workouts for Busy Moms
TurboFire with Chalene Johnson
I’ve tried a lot of workout programs, DVDs, and systems, but Turbo Fire is by far my favorite. I always say it’s a cross between kick-boxing and Zumba. It combines cardio, strength, and interval training with a fun, fast-paced choreography. It’s high enough intensity to give you a great cardio workout, but flexible enough to meet your particular workout needs. It comes with a wide variety of workouts, ranging in times from 15 minutes to 60 minutes, so there’s something for every day and every schedule! The workouts are super fun, and the variety keeps me from getting bored, which I tend to do very quickly!
Jillian has been with me from the very beginning of my fitness journey. When I started getting serious about a workout regime, hers were my go-to DVDs. Now, as a busy mom of two, I love the variety of workouts she has to choose from. If I’m low on time, I pop in the 20 minute 30-Day Shred. If I don’t want to get very sweaty, I put in my Yoga Meltdown. If I’m feeling extra energetic or have a bit more time, I use one of her longer workouts. You will definitely get a workout with Jillian, but I like that the moves are not technically difficult or hard on my joints. And the variety of DVDs she has out is amazing. There is something for every body part, fitness level, and time availability!
Jessica Smith TV
Jessica Smith TV is a recent find that I discovered on YouTube when I was pregnant with Andrew. The walking workouts are not quite what I’m looking for on a regular basis, but they were great for the first trimester, when I was nauseous and exhausted all the time, and in the third trimester when I was dealing with hip pain and Braxton Hicks. Now that I’ve had the baby, I use the walking workouts on days that I just don’t have the energy for TurboFire.
Walking videos aren’t all Jessica Smith TV offers. She also has HIIT workouts, body sculpting, yoga & pilates, and more! Right now, I’m enjoying her 20 Minute Fat Burning Cardio Workout. So far, I’ve only done her free YouTube videos, but she also has some workout DVDs.
I’m confident that among the variety of workouts available from the three ladies above, you can find something that works for you, even as a busy mom!
As an added bonus, I’m going to tell you about my new favorite fitness tool – my Fitbit Charge 2!
My New Favorite Fitness Tool
I’ve been seriously committed to regular exercise for about 7 years now. But I get tired and sluggish, just like everyone else. There are puh-lenty of days that I don’t feel like working out. What motivates me on those days (besides the satisfaction of feeling stronger and fitting in my favorite jeans)? Accountability and tracking my goals!
I have been a fan of myfitnesspal for several years, and it helps motivate me a lot. Definitely check it out if you’re not familiar with it. It has worked really well to keep me accountable in both diet and exercise.
Two years ago I got a Fitbit One. I liked how it encouraged me to be more active, but there were a lot of things that bugged me about it.
About a month ago, I decided to upgrade to the Fitbit Charge 2. I needed a new Fitbit, and I’d been wanting a heart rate monitor for years, so I decided to go for it.
And I LOVE it! Oh, I love it so much.
Here are my favorite features:
My 3 Favorite Features of the Fitbit Charge 2
- The heart rate monitor – It is one of the reasons I got it, after all. It’s neat to see how much of my activity falls in the fat burn, cardio, and peak categories, and it gives me a more accurate account of calories burned during my workouts. (Which I then log in myfitnesspal.)
- The workout tracker – With the simple push of a button, I can tell my Fitbit exactly when I start and stop my workout. It then provides data from that workout, such as average heart rate, calories burned, steps taken, and more.
- The “Reminders to Move” – Check this out, this is great! If you haven’t walked 250 steps (the equivalent of a couple minutes of walking) by 50 minutes into the hour, the Fitbit Charge 2 will vibrate and remind you to move. I love it!
Do you have a Fitbit or other kind of step tracker? Need some suggestions of how to get those recommended 10,000 steps? Besides the usual advice of “park farther away” and “take the stairs,” here are a few ideas you may not have thought of:
5 Unique Ideas to Get 10,000 Steps
- Dance party with your kids!
- Walk in place while cooking, doing dishes, folding laundry, etc.
- Put your computer on a counter, rather than a desk, and walk in place while you work.
- Housework (It’s extra incentive for me to do housework!)
- Take 5 minute breaks every couple hours to run in place.
(Pssst … want to make some money from your healthy choices? Check out the Achievemint app, where you can earn money when you track things like steps, workouts, food, and even sleep! It’s totally free to join, and if you sign up through my link, you can get 250 points just for joining!)
It was my hope in writing this post that you might find something useful to help you achieve your health & fitness goals this year. Let me know what you found that you’re excited to try! Or tell us about your favorite workouts and exercise tools!
And be sure to check out my other posts for a New Year, New You!