Frugal Fitness: A Mom, A Stroller and Power Wheels
I was honored when Fiscal Femme asked me to put together a post regarding how I would recommend staying fit while on a budget. I am an engineer and mom to two little boys and I strive to incorporate health and fitness in our life. I often plan our meals and snack ahead of time and I also have to get creative with workouts to squeeze them into our busy days. The timing for this post is perfect as we are watching the finances while building a new home. Here is a peek at the various methods and workouts that I employ to stay fit…
We do indeed have a fancy gym membership at my beloved Lifetime Fitness. The reality is that this membership is typically only utilized on the weekends (as we make it a family outing on Saturday and Sunday mornings). The reasoning for this is simply because I have not quite mastered the art of either a) squeezing in an early morning workouts at the gym before preschool drop off or b) letting go of the mom guilt which accompanies being gone all day at work and then taking additional time away for a workout in the evening. So family weekend mornings it is and continue reading to see what I do during the week and in special situations.
An example of a “special situations” is traveling. I always make sure to pack gym clothes to take full advantage of the hotel fitness centers. (I don’t always match my phone case to my outfit, but when I do I am sure to take a picture…)
I mentioned that I work full-time. I am an engineer so my work is typically not manual in nature but at least once a year we are encouraged to give back to the community, so I strive to volunteer for the manual labor jobs that allow me to burn some calories and be one with nature.
I will sometimes have the opportunity in my work schedule to step outside during a lunch break for some fresh air and light cardio by taking a walk. I am sure to have comfortable shoes for these opportunities to rack up those fitbit steps.
New workout clothing isn’t exactly budget friendly but it surely is when it can also be efficiently utilized also as a trendy club top. Not that I go to the club at all. I mean, I am a mom, let’s be honest that this top has only been to the gym….But IF I were to go to the club, I am ready.
On our campus at work, Zagster bikes are all around encouraging us to bike to our next meeting rather than drive. This is not only good for the environment and our bodies but it saves the stress of having to frantically look for a parking spot.
When possible while on a trip, my husband and I enjoy to workout together. While visiting one of our Michigan beach towns, we laced up our tennis shoes and jogged around the town exploring sights and attractions. We stopped on the pier for a quick photo with the glorious boats before winding down our workout at a local coffee shop. A latte is the best reward for a good sweat session in my mind.
Hands down, the most effective and affordable mom workout for me is the following: put one child in a jogging stroller and then have your other child literally chase you down the street in their power wheels vehicle. I promise you will burn some serious calories and fun will be had by all.
As mentioned previously, I love exercising while on vacation and on trips but I often find that my workout clothing takes up precious real estate in my suitcase. The Westin Times Square NYC had a fantastic Westin Move Well program where gear lending services are available for a very minimal fee. This was incredibly convenient during a recent trip and it was also quite fun to try out new clothing and shoes. The New Balance socks are amazingly cozy in case you are wondering.
All this sounds fun and exciting, but let me be real for a minute to express that weekday early mornings you will typically find me in my basement fitting in a 30 minute workout before the day begins. I either hop on my elliptical machine or put on a strength/ cardio DVD to get my body moving before the other bodies in my household get moving for the day.
I seem to have a theme of utilizing workout spaces wherever I go. It doesn’t matter what you do, for how long, or with who, as long as you are moving your body and exercising your heart that is the most important. If I can incorporate my family with my workouts, this makes me the most content as I am not only efficient but also sharing the message of how important it is to keep a healthy and active heart. During our trip to Mackinac Island we rented bicycles for a minimal fee and were able to explore the island while taking in the beautiful lake view scenery.
I get a thrill from working out in new spaces as it keeps things interesting. I ask you to find variety in what you do and just keep moving!