Health / Health Tips · July 21, 2022

How to Exercise With Your Kids: A Guide for Busy Parents

Having kids doesn’t have to mean no exercise. In fact, getting your kids moving is not only good for them; it’s good for you too. Getting active with your child could even become one of your favorite times of the day. However, if you didn’t grow up with a zealous love for sweat, it’s understandable that the thought of running around with an excitable toddler and trying to simultaneously get in your workout feels like a horrible idea. Fortunately, there are plenty of ways you can exercise with your kids that feel more like hanging out than anything else.

That said, it might take some planning and prep to make sure everyone is happy and nobody gets injured. Here are some helpful tips on how to exercise with your kids:

 

How to Exercise With Your Kids: A Guide for Busy Parents

With so much of our time spent at work, commuting, and shuttling kids to school and activities, it’s not always easy to find time for exercise. But as parents know, there are few things more important than staying healthy. Thankfully, research shows that getting active with your kids increases their activity levels and has major benefits for both parents and kids. Working out as a family also helps you build stronger relationships with your kids and improves your own confidence as a parent. These tips will help you get active with your children and see measurable results in both of you.

Go for a walk after dinner

The easiest way to start exercising with your kids is by incorporating movement into your everyday routine. After dinner, go for a walk with your kids. This will get you moving faster than just sitting around the house, and it will give you time to chat with them. Plus, it gives you an opportunity to set a good example for your kids about how important exercise is. Remember that when you’re walking as a family, you can always throw in some running, skipping, or jumping jacks to increase the intensity of the activity. If you need more than 20 minutes of physical activity after dinner, consider adding in some other activities throughout the day. You can take turns playing hockey in the basement while baking cupcakes or do push-ups and squats while watching TV together. The options are endless!

Run during children’s favourite shows

If you’ve been feeling guilty about missing your usual workout routine, you can log some quality time with your kids while getting in a good run. Try running during children’s favourite shows to make it more enjoyable for them. You can also watch the show in between segments to keep up with the storyline while you walk or jog around your living room. One of the most important things is to create a plan that’s tailored to your goals and family life. For example, if you’re looking for something simple and quick before work, try running when your favourite show comes on at 7am so you can have time for breakfast and coffee afterwards. If you have a longer window at night, try exercising from 8pm-10pm with the kids before they go to bed – this could be as easy as walking around your neighbourhood together or going on a bike ride.

Take the stairs instead of the elevator

We’ve all been in this situation: you want to work out but it’s cold outside, or you can’t find the time. And then we do take the stairs instead of the elevator, and that feels good! It’s a great short burst of cardio.

Hoskins up with push-ups and squats

For busy parents, there might not be much time to work out. But with a few quick and easy body weight exercises, you can get in a good sweat session whenever your kids are napping. One of the best ways to get a quick workout in is with push-ups and squats. Both of these exercises hit the major muscle groups and allow you to do them anywhere in as little as one minute at a time. To do push-ups properly, take a wider than shoulder-width stance with your feet flat on the ground. Tighten your abs and slowly lower yourself until your elbows touch the ground, then press back up. To do squats correctly, start in standing position with feet hip-width apart (or slightly wider) and toes pointed straight ahead or turned slightly outward. Place one hand on your hip for balance and slowly bend your knees until your thighs are parallel to the ground or lower if you’re comfortable doing so without straining joints or muscles. Press through heels as you stand back up to return to starting position.

Go for a run or hike with your kids

One of the best ways to stay active with your kids is to go for a run or hike together. Running or hiking is an excellent cardio workout that also builds endurance and muscle strength. And if you find yourself without a safe place to exercise, there are always parks, vacant lots, and other open spaces where you can take your children for a run or hike. Many parents also find that running with their children is a great bonding experience. Activities like this help create a sense of community and strengthen relationships within families.

Hit the gym with your kids

A personal trainer can help you set goals, create a plan, and motivate you to succeed. They can also show you exercises that will strengthen your core muscles and other areas for better balance. You might want to try using your kids as weights during strength training or put them in a stroller while you walk or run. If you’re not quite ready to get a personal trainer, there are plenty of apps that can help guide you with workouts tailored to your needs. There are also plenty of YouTube videos with workouts and tutorials. Some gyms offer childcare while you work out, allowing you to keep up with your fitness routine without sacrificing time with the kids.

Bottom line

If you want to be more active, work out with your kids! Here are some tips for working out as a parent: 1. Treadmill: If you have a treadmill at home, use it to keep your kids entertained and happy while you get in some exercise. 2. Bike ride: Take the kids on a bike ride around the neighborhood or to the park, and they’ll love getting a change of scenery. 3. Walk: Walking is an easy way to get exercise as a family. You can walk up stairs, up hills, or take walks in nature with the whole family. 4. Dance: Put on your favorite tunes and dance together! You can also play some YouTube videos of dancing-related activities like Zumba or breakdancing to mix things up. 5. Swimming: Swimming is a low-impact way for parents and kids to stay active that also offers many benefits for both adults and children alike, like improved heart health and increased lung capacity for children.