Though my children are no longer in diapers, I certainly understand the difficulties of finding time for yourself and getting in a regular workout when your kids are little. You are cooking meals, changing diapers, cleaning the house, going to the park, being a super mom, and totally overwhelmed by the idea of losing weight.
There are no breaks when you're a mom. If you're not careful the stress can ad up. For that reason I have put together a few tips to help mange the chaos of being a mommy and making time to reach your goals.
1. Set a schedule. Many moms buy into expensive diet plans and get frustrated when they do not have instant results. Well, no matter what you hear, there is just no such thing as "an easy way out" when it comes to weight loss. It does take some work. Plan a set time each day that you can dedicate to exercise, meal prepping, journaling, or working towards your goal. No matter how small of a commitment you can make- make a real commitment and stick to it!
2. Have a secret toy box. We need to keep the kids busy and don't always want to just put them in front of the TV. Compile a stack of "go to toys" that you know will keep your kids distracted for 20 minutes so you can do yoga, push ups, or whatever your favorite workout is. For my kids, the secret toy box contains puzzles, crayons/ coloring books, and lately, Zhu Zhu pets. Keep this special toys box separate from the other toys so that when you do bring it out, they are exciting enough to keep their attention.
3. Take advantage of down time. Every child has a couple hours, for some maybe minutes, during each day when they are most calm and will gladly play alone while you workout. Take advantage of this time.
4. Give them paperwork. If you are journaling, creating meal plans, or writing out your goals, don't just sit at your desk and stress over it while the kids run around screaming! Take your "paper work" to the kitchen table and give your kids some paper work of their own. When my children were little, I would have them trace their name and practice writing letters. It's amazing how much easier it is to concentrate with the peace of mind that the kids are occupied.
5. Get out of the house for a few hours each day. Some times walking away from everything is the best way for a mom to dedicate all of her attention on the kids. If you are spending the whole day feeling like everything you do is lacking in some way, it's time to give up for a little while. Refresh yourself and submerge your children in lots of attention. Then when you get back to work you'll be more focused and in a much better mood.
6. Child proof!! Having a safe home, or even one safe room, where your child can play while you exercise is essential. Your child may be in the same room with you, but when your attention is on something else, like hosting a plank, it will give you so much peace of mind to know they are playing safely.
7. Look forward to bedtime. Some days the kids are going to need you all day, every minute. Don't waste your energy beating yourself up about what is not getting done. Being a mommy is your most important job. After the kids go to bed, you can always get in a good workout.