8 Easy Eco Fitness Tips For Busy Mums!

Easy-eco-fitness-tips-for-busy-mums

With four kids under six years there were times when I didn’t have the energy or inclination to lift a finger let alone exercise. My second child survived on minimal sleep so I was forced to do the same. Although I was diagnosed with post-natal depression, I thought I was suffering from post natal exhaustion. I was not keen on taking ‘tablets’ so threw myself into a fitness regime…I knew that being physically fit would also help my mental health. Over the years I have created sustainable, achievable and affordable exercise routines that I continue to practice daily. These workouts leave a light footprint on our planet…

1. Walk (It) Out

Babies love the distraction and attention of new faces. Whenever my partner returned from work or, when a grandparent or neighbour popped in, the kids would squeal with delight. I would seize these ‘moments’….when visitors entered, I’d exit (after they agreed to babysit of course!). I would complete a brisk walk around the block before the kids even realised I had ‘escaped’. These 10-15 minute ‘recharge routines’ gave me a few moments to breathe, gain strength and gave me clarity. Sunshine on my face helped to lift the fog. As my fitness levels improved I would set myself challenges, for example, jugging to one light pole…walking to the next, jogging between two light poles, walking between two light poles. I am always exploring opportunities to increase training intensity.

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2. Yummy Mummy Fitness

Instead of paying for a gym membership start your own fitness group with friends. Commit to paying a nominated sum into a designated bank account each week. Arrange to meet at a designated time at a designated place for your weekly workout. If you are a new mum this could simply involve walking around your local park with bubs in the pram. Pack healthy picnic lunches and discover your neighbouring hoods! Organise visits to the zoo, aquarium, gallery or local museum. Any outing that involves movement!

If (just) 4 friends commit to paying $20 week (each) for 52 weeks there would be a $4,160 slush fund to spend at the end each year. This investment could be spent on employing a personal trainer for additional motivation and technical guidance, pampering sessions (nothing like a massage or facial to boost your self esteem) or perhaps you could save up to attend a weekend health retreat!

3. Kitchen Fitness

How many hours do you spend daily preparing meals in the kitchen? How many caffeine hits to you have per day? Kitchens are not the place for kettle bells but when you are waiting for the kettle to boil do a set of squats or lunges, practices push ups on the kitchen bench or perhaps a 3 minute pelvic floor routine?

4. Gardening Fitness

I don’t know whether it’s my age, my love of being outdoors, the cost of feeding a family of six, the lack of transparency about the chemicals in our foods or the satisfaction of growing and harvesting seasonal produce. Perhaps it is all of these factors but, I simply cannot get enough of gardening! Fit bodies need fit food and there is nothing better than home grown produce. Like people, gardens need constant attention. Dedicate just 30 minutes every other day of digging, weeding, sweeping and get growing!

Gardening tasks are many & varied using many muscle groups. Stretching before and after each gardening session will free you from many aches and pains.

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5. Playground Fitness

Playgrounds are the best gymnasiums on the planet. Can you find me a postcode that doesn’t have one? Playgrounds are open 24 hours and membership is free. Basic functional exercises are the best…step ups, push ups, pull ups and, has anyone heard of monkey bars? Dress for action. Instead of sitting on a park bench watching your kids and snacking on treats play chasey with them up and down the slides. Keep up with your kids and be a great role model.

6. Cleaning Fitness

Cleaning. It has to be done…sometimes daily. The most effective cleaning routine on the planet involves using visualisation techniques. Imagine that someone you want to impress is arriving at your home in 45 minutes. Write out your ‘to do’ list, turn up the music, set a timer and go! Take the chore out of housework and make it fun, make it a challenge. If you have stairs, every time you use them walk up and down them twice. Try skipping between each task (no rope required). Dance while you are dusting. Work up a sweat!

7. Bath Time Fitness

You cannot take your eyes of children when water is involved and bath times can take anywhere between 5 and 50 minutes! My babies loved the water…bath time was their workout!

Before you start exercising in the bath room ALWAYS ensure there are non slip mats on the floor and do not take your eyes off the children for a second. Routines can include, knee raises, quad wall holds, ballet pliés. The edge of the bath tub is great for planking and tricep dips!

8. Sleep & Meditation Fitness

Being a mum is a tough gig…lack of sleep can have a detrimental effect on your health and your ability to remain fit! It’s important to grab power naps whenever possible and learn to practice meditation.

Woman Sleeping Peacefully

The other kind of tablets I like to avoid are the computer variety, particularly in the evening. We (can) waste so much time looking at screens. Calm yourself for bed by switch off electronic gadgets. A great sleep will give you the energy to work the exercise routines listed above!

SYTYCR-Moira-Portrait-RGBMoira is the mum of four gorgeous teenagers, and her aim is to help busy women adopt healthy, environmentally friendly fitness & food practices. She is a qualified personal trainer and is gradually turning her suburban back yard into a productive food orchard based on permaculture principles. Through a range of personal training programs, workshops and cooking demonstrations (as a Thermomix Consultant) she shares her experiences and knowledge for a healthier and happier life.

Connect with her at www.ducksback.com.au or on Facebook. No matter how busy you are, your path to health and wellness can become like “water off a duck’s back”.

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