It can be hard for busy moms to slot in workout routines. When you’re strapped for time, but desperately want the health benefits and feel-good endorphins that exercise brings, try getting some action at the playground or park. You’re there with your toddler anyway, so add some fun… and feel the burn!
WARM-UP If you walked or biked to the playground, you’re ready to exercise, but if you drove, take care—warm-up with a brisk 5 to 10 minute walk and some gentle stretches.
CARDIO SUGGESTIONS Strengthen your heart and lungs while burning calories* with 30 minutes of these aerobic activities that don’t require any special gear.
- Follow your toddler through the park, either walking (150 calories) or jogging (225 calories)
- Frisbee (112 calories)
- Hop-scotch, vigorous games like tag (185 calories)
- Jump rope (375 calories)
* Average calories burned are calculated per 30-minute session for a 155-lb person.
STRENGTH TRAINING Tone-up and develop lean muscle with these multi-tasking moves that target two or more muscle groups. (Start with five repetitions and build up as your strength increases).
- Planks: They work your core (abdominals, back and pelvis) and can be done on the grass or a picnic blanket.
- Pushups: They work your pectoral muscles at the front of your chest, plus your triceps (at the back of your upper arms), and core.
- Squats: They strengthen your quadriceps and hamstring muscles (in the front and back of your thighs, respectively). You’ll also feel them working your glutes.
COOL DOWN End with a few minutes of gentle stretches.
TIP: Embarrassed? Bring a playground buddy—another mom who’ll work up a sweat with you. Just don’t be surprised if others ask to join in!