As a mom it's your challenging yet fulfilling duty to teach, protect and nourish your children.
However, the world's most important job can often times leave you so frazzled that the equally crucial task of taking care of yourself seems impossible.
The following tips will put time and energy back into your schedule. Becoming fit and healthy is no longer just a pipeline dream.
Create a Home Gym
Whether you have a health club membership or not, set up a home gym. Between homework-helping, diaper-changing, dinner-making and career-juggling, finding time to get to the gym may not always be a viable option. If you set up a customized workout space in your house (or backyard), you can workout as late or early as you want, or even find time out between tasks and chores.
And yes, a treadmill and shiny Bowflex might sound nice, but all you really need is a space to call your own, a couple of dumbbells, a jump rope, a workout mat and mp3 player (or whatever it is that gets you to move).
Mix it UpPlay fitness DVDs in the living room and take brisk walks or jogs outside. To cover all of your bases, it's a good idea to carry a pair of sneakers and perhaps a jump rope in your car. Now you can workout at anytime...no more excuses.
Workout With YouEncourage your kids to exercise with you and turn up your music and have a dance-fest. Other ideas are to play sports at the park, bike together on the beach or explore local trails. Even a stroll around the mall or house chores together can yield healthy bodies and a clean home to boot.
By doing this, you get to spend quality time with your children, teach them the value of exercise and get a good workout in without having to look for a baby-sitter.
The "Food" IssueYou generally know what is good for you and what is not. The hardest part for all of us is actually doing what we know is the best for us- eating more fruits, vegetables, lean proteins and complex carbohydrates while reducing excess sugars, fats and processed, pre-packaged foodstuff to nearly zilch.
First of all, don't stress. With time and commitment, your food preferences will change. Your body will get used to running efficiently on all the nutrients you're feeding it and will crave healthy foods.
In the meantime, you can either eat treat yourself once in a while to small portions of "sinful" cravings, or preferably, make healthier versions of them. There are always ways to lower the fat, sugar and calories in many foods with fresh ingredients.