This week’s guest post comes to us from Rachel, who blogs over at Running Rachel. Rachel is a great example of the ultimate busy mom. She’s a stay-at-home mom of 3 busy (and very adorable) boys. In spite of her busy and often hectic schedule, she is able to prioritize a healthy and active lifestyle for herself and her family (including running her 3rd half marathon recently!). I am inspired every day at what is possible, thanks to mom’s like Rachel.
When did you first start working out on a regular basis?
I have always enjoyed working out. I have always been an athlete and a runner. When I was pregnant with my first child, I made it part of my morning routine to walk the dog. That morning routine continued after having my son – I just packed him in the carrier and walked the dog. Continuing on with each child… they expect that morning walk each day – it is part of our normal routine.
What are the biggest challenges you face as a stay at home mom of 3 boys with regard to getting your workouts in?
The biggest challenges I face as a stay at home mom to three boys with regard to getting my workouts in is finding balance. There is always SOMETHING that needs to be done, whether it is errands, housework, school work, play dates… something!!
Time is also a HUGE challenge. I am a breastfeeding mom, so time is precious. I know that I have a certain amount of time before I am due back to my baby who will need to nurse.
What advice/tips do you have to offer other moms out there who struggle with balancing motherhood and healthy living (i.e. time for themselves!)?
You need to have a support system! If you are married, the support of your husband is essential for success!! My husband supports me with my fitness goals. Without his help, I would be unable to do MOST of what I do. I do alot of running… and although I do enjoy and run while pushing the double jogger… it is MORE enjoyable to run sans kiddos.
Routine… you need to make fitness part of your daily routine. When you do something at the same time every day, it will become routine, almost expected! You will find that you crave that exercise/activity and look forward to that time of day!
Priority… make yourself a priority! Many times we as Mom’s put ourselves LAST… but we need to take care of ourselves too. If we don’t take care of US, who will?
How has being a mom affected the quality/quantity of workouts you do?
Since being a mom, my workouts have become sporatic yet fun. Before children, I was able to take off at a whim and run for hours (literally) and just enjoy the act of fitness. After children, I need to plan plan plan… make sure they are fed, well rested, have a snack, have gone to the lou before hand, are happy, etc.
I include my children in my workouts… they often use their 1-2lb weights alongside me. They laugh as I hold my chest when I do jumping jacks. They race me down the street when I do speed training. Children LOVE to workout… and they LOVE playing. Working out with my children is alot like playing… and we do it alot.
What inspires you? (or who inspires you) and why?
When I see ANY mom out exercising she inspires me! I know how challenging it is to just get out there and DO IT.
What really tickles my fancy is when I see a fit mom running while pushing a double jogging stroller (filled with kids). I can totally relate with her… and am in awe of her physical fitness.
Seeing women exercising WITH their children is very inspiring to me. It shows me that we CAN be Super-MOM and take charge of our health too.
Where do you see yourself heading with your fitness in the coming months/years?
I would LOVE to run and complete a full marathon within the next few months (but again it goes with the challenge of time – and a nursing child).
Some items on my fitness bucket list are: triathalon (any version of one); ride-n-tie; full marathon and more!
Rachel’s tips for you:
1. Make YOURSELF a priority.
2. Get your spouse on board with your health, fitness and weightloss goals – tell him your goals.
3. Make fitness a daily ROUTINE (priority).
4. Include your children in your workouts.
5. Have fun when working out – if it isn’t fun you won’t want to do it!
Excellent tips! Rachel is also currently on the homestretch of a 7-week long bootcamp over at Mamavation. Head over there and follow her journey, her blogs and her vlogs. Don’t forget to leave a comment of encouragement. This bootcamp is not easy!