Being a stay-at-home mom has its perks, one of which is the joy of caring for your little ones. But in the thick of diaper changes, meal prep, and playdates, you may find you have less time to focus on your fitness.
Wouldn’t it be great if you could keep fit while never stepping outside your home? It may appear daunting, but it’s more manageable than you think. In fact, research has shown that integrating short bursts of exercise into your day can have significant health benefits, such as boosting energy levels and improving mental well-being (2).
Here’s your guide to stay-at-home mom workouts, designed to be both efficient and effective. Whether you have access to weights or not, these at-home workouts are tailored to match your lifestyle and fitness goals and will help you stay active, healthy, and happy.
Can You Get in Shape Just by Working Out at Home?
You can most definitely get in shape by simply working out at home. Here’s how:
Convenience: Your home is your castle, and it can also be your gym. No commute, no gym membership, no problem. You can work out anytime that suits your busy schedule.
Personalized workouts: At home, you have the freedom to tailor your workouts to your specific needs and preferences. You’re not bound by the class schedule of a gym.
Privacy: If you’re not comfortable with public gym settings or if you’re just starting, working out at home gives you the privacy to explore different exercises at your own pace, without ever feeling self-conscious.
Cost-effective: Home workouts can be as simple or as sophisticated as you want them to be. You can start with body-weight exercises that require no equipment, or invest in some basic gear such as a yoga mat, resistance bands, and free weights. In the long term, it will certainly be cheaper than gym membership fees.
How Do Stay-at-Home Moms Work Out?
They make use of nap times. This is the perfect window of opportunity for a quick workout. You’d be amazed at what can be achieved in just 20 minutes!
Some involve their little ones in their workout routines. Think about it – you can do some yoga while your toddler mimics your moves, or even wear your baby while you do a yoga sequence. A Mommy and Me dance session isn’t entirely out of the question, and neither is a walk in the park while pushing your child in a stroller.
You could also multitask like a pro. Watching your favorite show? Then why not do some squats or lunges at the same time? Waiting for your coffee to brew? That’s enough time to skip with a rope.
Stay-at-home moms who work out know that the goal is to keep moving and remain active, so they do what they can with what they have.
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How Can I Exercise when I Have a Baby?
Preparation is the single most crucial step to working out at home when you have a baby. This means:
Set goals: What do you want to achieve? Whether it’s losing weight, toning your muscles, or simply staying active, setting a goal will keep you motivated and on track.
Create a workout schedule: Treat your workouts like you would treat any other task. Block off a specific time for exercise each day and stick to it.
Set up a workout space: Find a designated area in your home where you can work out comfortably and safely. It doesn’t need to be big, just as long as there’s enough space for some simple equipment such as resistance bands or free weights.
Have the right gear: Depending on the type of workout you choose, you could invest in some basic gear that will support and enhance your exercise routine. You’ll need a good pair of workout shoes, comfortable and breathable clothing, and a sturdy yoga mat.
Get support: Share your fitness goals with your partner or other moms. Having someone who will keep you accountable will help you stay on track and keep you motivated.
Ask for help when needed: If your little ones are awake and demanding attention, don’t be afraid to ask for help from your partner or a friend. Remember, taking care of yourself is just as important as taking care of others.
The Best At-Home Workouts for Moms at Every Stage
Below are five at-home workout options for moms, with and without weights:
Postnatal Yoga for Moms with Newborns
Stay-at-home mom workouts can start as early as during the postnatal stage. Postnatal yoga is a gentle and restorative practice that helps new moms reconnect with their bodies while enhancing overall strength and flexibility. It’s particularly beneficial for healing and tone restoration following childbirth. A simple yoga routine may include postpartum core exercises, controlled breathing, and postpartum chair yoga routines.
- Start with a gentle warm-up, stretching your body and awakening your muscles
- Practice several rounds of controlled breathing to center your focus
- Engage your core with gentle postpartum exercises, focusing on control over intensity
- Conclude your practice with a relaxing postpartum chair yoga routine, stretching and releasing any tension you have in your body
Body-Weight Workout for Moms with Toddlers
As your child grows, so will the demands on your time and energy. At-home workouts for moms with toddlers without equipment are designed to be quick and effective. A body-weight workout can be completed in the comfort of your living room and no special equipment is required.
This full-body workout will help you build strength, agility, and endurance, all of which are essential attributes for keeping up with your energetic toddler.
- Start with a five-minute warm-up of light jogging on the spot and dynamic stretching
- Proceed with three rounds of body-weight exercises, including squats, push-ups, and lunges, focusing on form and control
- Complete your workout with a cool-down that includes stretching and deep breathing
Seven-Minute Workout for Busy Moms
As motherhood progresses, so does the complexity of your schedule. Balancing the demands of school, extracurriculars, and your own personal responsibilities can leave very little time for fitness. This is where the seven-minute workout comes in. Our post on core exercises postpartum shows you some good exercises you can do.
This highly efficient stay-at-home mom workout regimen enables you to stay active and healthy, even on the most jam-packed days. The seven-minute workout utilizes high-intensity interval training, alternating short bursts of intense exercise with brief periods of rest.
It’s a great way for busy moms to stay fit, lose weight, and keep up with the high-energy life of motherhood.
- Warm up with a quick round of jumping jacks to increase your heart rate
- Transition into a round of wall sits, push-ups, abdominal crunches, chair steps, and squats – every exercise should be performed for 30 seconds with a 10-second break in between
- Conclude with a cool-down period, stretching your muscles and practicing deep breathing
Running for Moms with School-Going Kids
As your children grow older, you may find pockets of time where you can focus on yourself. This offers physical benefits such as improved cardiovascular health and fitness, while also being an effective stress reliever.
Running can be incorporated into a busy mom workout schedule and provide a much-needed escape from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. Our article on running postpartum explains this in detail.
- Start with a brisk five-minute warm-up walk
- Transition into a comfortable running pace with the aim of maintaining this for a minimum of 20 minutes
- End with a five-minute cool-down walk and some post-run stretching to prevent muscle stiffness
Weight Training for Moms with Teenagers
Weight training is an excellent way of building muscle strength and increasing bone density, which is particularly important for women as they age.
As your child enters their teenage years, you may find yourself with more time on your hands. At-home workouts for moms with weights may have a learning curve, particularly if you’ve never done it before, but with consistent practice, you’ll soon be lifting like a pro.
- Familiarize yourself with basic weight training equipment, such as dumbbells and resistance bands
- Start with light weights and focus on proper form, gradually increasing the weight over time
- Focus on compound exercises that work multiple muscle groups simultaneously, such as squats, deadlifts, and rows
- Incorporate rest days into your workout routine to allow muscle recovery and growth
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Frequently Asked Questions
How can a woman start working out at home?
Starting a workout routine at home involves creating a suitable workout space, setting realistic fitness goals, and establishing a consistent workout routine. It’s useful to have some basic fitness gear such as a yoga mat, comfortable athletic wear, and a set of dumbbells or resistance bands.
There are several available online resources, such as YouTube fitness channels or fitness apps, that provide a variety of workout routines for people of different fitness levels. Start with routines that match your current fitness level and gradually increase the intensity as your strength and endurance improve.
How many days a week should I work out?
The American Heart Association recommends a minimum of 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity or 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity each week, ideally spread throughout the week. This translates to approximately 30 minutes of exercise, five days a week. Ultimately, workout frequency can vary depending on your fitness goals and personal schedule.
How do I find time to exercise as a working mom?
Finding time to exercise as a working mom can be quite challenging, but it’s not impossible. You can incorporate exercise into your daily routine. For example, you can start with short workout sessions during your lunch break or immediately after you wake up in the morning.
You could also consider high-intensity workouts that offer maximum benefits in a short time, such as the seven-minute workout. Combining activities, such as playing with your child while you do some body-weight exercises or walking rather than driving for short distances, can also help.
Which exercise is the mother of all exercises?
Often referred to as the ‘mother of all exercises’, the squat holds this esteemed title. Squats work several muscle groups simultaneously, including the quadriceps, hamstrings, and glutes. They can help improve strength, flexibility, and balance, and can burn more calories effectively. As the squat engages multiple joints and muscles, it burns more calories than other isolated exercises. (1).
The Bottom Line
With these at-home workout options, moms can easily integrate exercise into their busy schedules without needing to leave the house. From postnatal yoga to high-intensity interval training, there’s something for every stage of motherhood. Remaining physically active can improve energy levels while also contributing to better mental well-being, which helps mothers stay healthy and happy while they take care of their families.
This article is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional advice or help and should not be relied on to make decisions of any kind. Any action you take upon the information presented in this article is strictly at your own risk and responsibility!
- 12 Benefits of Squats – Updated (2019,urbanfitness.com.au)
- Exercise: 7 benefits of regular physical activity (2023,mayoclinic.org)