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How a Working Mom Makes Time For Working Out

I Work Full Time and Have 2 Kids — This Is How I Make Workouts Happen

I have a confession to make: I am a fitness editor and I have a hard time making workouts happen. It's my job, right? It should be easy. I know the benefits of regular sweat sessions and have plenty of workouts on hand, but it still feels like a struggle. Between working full time, mothering my two tween girls, trying to connect with my husband, and staying current with the latest TV shows . . . well, you know — life is full. Life is busy. It's hard to fit it all in.

But I make it work. I need to. Not for professional credibility — although sometimes that does motivate — but for a few other reasons. One, I've accumulated a lot of injuries in my active life and if I don't move almost daily, my body aches. Secondly, I need a good sweat session to help my mood and manage stress — if I have any hope of feeling happy, I better get my blood pumping. I also like to cook, bake, and drink wine, so I use regular exercise to maintain my weight.

Here's a rundown of my fitness life from last week. You can see how I fit the workouts in and where I fall short.

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Sunday: 8 a.m., 90-minute walk in my hilly neighborhood with a friend and a coffee in hand.
4 p.m., 30 minutes of bodyweight strength training after grocery shopping and before cooking dinner.

Monday: 6 a.m., 25 minutes of cardio following the T25 Focus DVD by Shaun T. I love a dose of Shaun in the early morning. I made my husband do the workout with me. We were done by 6:30 — the time our daughters' alarms went off.

Tuesday: 8:15 a.m., 60-minute bike ride between school drop-off starting my work day. On Tuesdays, I get to work from home so I try to use what would be my normal commute time to exercise; I am very grateful for this perk. My husband did this ride with me. And honestly if he hadn't gotten my bike out, pumped up my tires, and filled my water bottle, I would have skipped it.

Wednesday: Rest day with 5 minutes of Pilates ab work and 5 minutes of stretching — my aching back doesn't take a real rest on rest days.

Thursday: 6:15 a.m., 30-minute strength training mixed with cardio using this Class FitSugar video 300-Calorie-Burning Video Workout, which kicks my ass and I love it. I did this with my husband via YouTube on Apple TV. This time I was the instigator who got us both up and working out.

Friday: 1 p.m., 20 minutes of lunchtime yoga — mostly Sun Salutations and standing poses.
6:30 p.m., 20-minute walk with my dog — I hit as many hills as I could while letting her stop and sniff at only a third of the spots she was interested in smelling.

Saturday: I was supposed to go swimming and I didn't. I took a nap instead. While I felt a little guilty about skipping the pool, the nap was glorious. I think I needed the rest and I listened to my body.

This week was pretty typical, and after writing it down in one place, I feel good about what I've done. High five to self! I try to move as much as possible on the weekends and having at least one fitness date to either walk, bike, or Zumba totally helps. I could do more cardio, but I could also nap more too.

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