Everyone is busy–so fitting in a trip to the gym can be a real feat. Add kids to the mix, and it can seem downright impossible sometimes. While there are plenty of ways to incorporate little ones into your fitness routine, sometimes you just want a little solo time. The good news? Many gyms are kid-friendly with great childcare options so you can bring them along and still get in a great workout. Just because you became a parent doesn’t mean you need to give up your commitment to fitness (and just because you don’t have kids doesn’t mean you have all the time in the world to work out). But when you’re a multitasking mama, you’ll inevitably find your gym experiences with little plus ones is a bit different than it used to be…and here’s why:
Packing the gym bag
Before kids: You fill your cute sports bag with a chilled water bottle, iPod and workout clothes to change into at the gym.
After kids: You dress at home to save time and throw a couple juice boxes into the diaper bag for the kiddos.
Before kids: You jog for a mile or two to warm up before easing into the speedwork plan you carefully mapped out at the beginning of the week.
After kids: You jog for a minute or two before breaking into a sprint in case you get the dreaded overhead page calling you to come get your crying baby.
Before kids: You decide to hit the weight room and do some toning exercises. You complete a lower- and upper-body circuit before finishing with some ab work.
After kids: You do walking lunges all the way back to the childcare room.
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Before kids: You grab some mat space and take a few minutes for some deep stretching and cool down after a hard training routine.
After kids: You stretch your arms wrangling one kid and your legs squatting down to pick up the other.
Before kids: You treat yourself to a kale protein smoothie at the juice bar on the way out.
After kids: You share some Goldfish with the kids on the drive home.
Before kids: You take a long, hot shower to relax your muscles.
After kids: You take a 3-minute shower and relax with the kids watching Frozen.
End of the day
Before kids: You hit the sheets feeling tired but accomplished. You fit an awesome workout into your busy day—way to go!
After kids: Hit the sheets feeling tired but accomplished. You fit an awesome workout into your busy day—way to go!
Of course this isn’t necessarily typical of every trip to the gym, kids or no kids. The point is, whether you have all the time in the world to work out or only 20 minutes, whether you make it to the gym alone or with half a soccer team tagging along, give yourself a well-deserved pat on the back for however you get it done!