Maintaining fitness with kids?*

Something I’m asked about  a lot when I talk about my fitness routine is how I manage it with kids. A comment that I get frequently is ‘I’d love to go to the gym/ do a workout but I just don’t have the time with my children’ and honestly guys this is only a problem if you make it a problem. For me it’s just a case of prioritising, if I only have one spare hour in the day when the kids are napping or having some downtime then I’ll choose to workout rather than watch Keeping up with the Kardashians; even if I’m knackered once they’ve gone to bed I make the effort to do a quick booty or ab workout and just work a bit later because I know how much I benefit from doing so.

If you want to see the results and you know that working out will make you feel not only physically but mentally great/ not working out will make you feel crap then to me it’s a no brainer. Yes there are days that we literally don’t have the time – mama’s who are up at 5am for the school run, working all day then doing the mum thang and working a second job once their kids are asleep I hold my hands up to but ladies we need to take care of ourselves! If you’re working till gone midnight each evening but neglecting your body then your finances may be booming but your body confidence and general health and wellbeing are being left at the sideline.

Health is wealth and for me I would rather say no to a few jobs, be a little behind on emails, watch a few less episodes of KUWTK and even do a few less social things – but get my exercise in each week. Scratch that, double the productivity and do a booty workout whilst watching KUWTC, reply to emails at the gym and make working out a social thing. I’m not that into nights out and shopping trips so working out with my girlfriends sounds like the perfect girls day and it kills two birds with one stone!

So the two main ways that I fit my fitness in around my kids are home workouts and being a member of a health club with a creche.

Home workouts I do when the boys are in bed, napping or having downtime. It’s not that easy to focus on your squats when your little one is trying to run their toy car under your legs like you’re a bridge but hey us mamas were born to improvise! It’s not my first option as I much prefer working out at the gym but if I can’t get there and I need my fix of positive endorphins than I pick up my boys and I squat. Both Jenson and Jasper find it hilarious to copy me and I always feel so much more accomplished knowing that I’ve done something great for my body.

If you’re stuck for home workout motivation then there are tons of videos on youtube and instagram which is where I get all of my inspiration from and there are also fab apps you can get on your phone. If the weather is nice then take the workout into the garden while your little ones play or even to the park!

Now as for my first choice and something that I would recommend to any mama wanting to get back into her fitness – join a health club! I’m currently a member of David Lloyd and the thing that swayed it for me was the onsite childcare and amazing facilities for kids. I don’t have to faff about asking someone to watch the boys while I go to the gym, which is especially hard now that I’m on my own, so having a place where I can drop them off and workout in the same building is great!

We’ve been members at our club since I was pregnant with Jenson; it started off as a Virgin Active but David Lloyd took it over earlier this year and we’ve really gotten into using all of the amenities it has to offer as a family. It has a creche from 8am-1pm where you can book your little ones in by the hour – perfect for a class or gym session. Quite often I’ll go for two hours so that I can do a bit of both or maybe a quick swim, sauna and steam room after a gym session! The creche sessions cost around £5 an hour and you can buy a pass of 10 so that when you want to book them in you can simply call reception and they’ll take off your hour rather than you paying each time you go.

The creche is full of toys, crafts and activities and has a lovely outside space too. They also offer free hourly sessions for ages 3+ which means that if I take Jasper at certain times (two different slots a day) he’s free! These sessions are more suited to his age so involve arts, crafts and dancing which can all be booked on the mobile app! The ladies there are all fully qualified and so lovely which means that not only do the boys have an amazing time and I don’t feel guilty that I’m not doing something with them, but I also have peace of mind that they’re in great hands!

Quite often I’ll make a whole day of it as the club also has a great restaurant, soft play area as well as an indoor and outdoor pool so it’s a great way to get out with the kids, have fun with them but also get some me-time in and achieve your goals!

Mamas if you’re itching to achieve your fitness goals or even if you’re body is on point but you simply want to exercise regularly for the mental and physical benefits then don’t let things like time, kids and money get in the way. When you look at the grand scheme of things all we have is time but that time is limited and I know I’d rather spend it being healthy and extending my days to be with my children for as long as possible. Things like health club memberships can be pricey but if you make the most of what they have to offer like swimming sessions, soft play sessions and all of the classes and gym sessions that are making you the healthiest version of yourself then I’d say it’s money more than well spent!

How do you fit time in for fitness around being a parent? Have you already found the balance or will you start some home workouts and join a health club?

Thanks for reading,

Jess x

*This post is in association with David Lloyd, all opinions are my own

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Hi I’m Jess, a parenting, lifestyle and travel blogger. I write about all things minimalism, mum life, fitness and travel with a heap of positivity!