Being a busy, working full time mom of an infant can pose a challenge on your workout time, no doubt about it. I think all of us moms have been there. We strive to be the best parent we can be and we miss our baby while working, so we get those guilty feelings when we sacrifice some of their awake hours to hit the gym rather than spending it playing with the baby.
When I was pregnant I will never forget walking into the Pilates studio and feeling those gentle kicks in my belly. My daughter would hear the music and do her own Pilates class! She was my workout buddy then and continues to be. I never stopped working out and quickly discovered how fun it is incorporate her into my workout routines. Doing Pilates with my baby is my favorite form of being active. We laugh, we spend time together, we bond and as a side effect I am getting toned, lean muscle.
Combining quality time with your baby with a quick workout isn’t as hard it might seem. Turn your walk into a workout! All you need is a stroller. It’s a super fun, but challenging routine that will whip your body into bikini-ready shape before summer arrives. Do each move slowly, with concentration and repeat 5-10 times while tightening your core and don’t forget about breathing. Think of the stroller as your Reformer carriage.
1. Stroller Plank
Make sure there is a part of your stroller that can support your weight without tipping. Place your arms on both sides of rails and hold a plank position for 15 seconds. Next slowly extend one of your legs and hold for 5 seconds. Repeat on the other leg. The best part of this exercise is that you can chat with your baby so the 5 second holds don’t feel like eternity!
2. Plank to Pike
Place your hands on the ground and your feet on a portion of the stroller railing that is safe and push out into a plank position. Exhale and slowly pike your hips up and hold for few seconds while tightening all your core muscles. Go back to plank position.
3. Simple Lunge/Walking Lunge
You can do lunges while being stationary or you can push your stroller forward into walking lunges. Do the moves slowly making sure you aren’t overshooting your knee ahead of your ankle. Check by looking down and making sure you can see your toes when you lunge.
4. Stroller express lunge
My favorite! Place one of your feet behind you on a safe portion of your stroller and the other on the ground. Come down into a lunge position and slowly push your stroller behind you. The majority of your body weight should be in the standing leg. Return to standing. Come up onto your tiptoes for an extra balance and calf challenge!
5. Stroller spider kicks
Get ready adductors and butt! This exercise is the same idea as the Express Lunge. Square your hips with one foot on the ground and the other on the stroller. Slowly kick your stroller leg to the side while staying in a semi squat, then pull the stroller back towards you.
6. Forward kick
Face your stroller and place one foot on the stroller. Half squat down, extending your stroller leg and then pull back in. Stay in that half squat. You are working both legs here, using your quads when you extend the leg and the hamstrings when you pull back in.
7. Stroller arm push-pulls
Get into a squat position and pull the stroller in and extend out slowly. This positioning works your bicep, tricep, chest and upper back muscles while still working your legs. It’s a pretty amazing move that allows almost your whole body to get actively exercised!
8. Baby squats
Your baby will love this one and so will you. Simply squat down and stand up with your baby in your arms. You can extend your arms up for added fun for your baby, while working your shoulders and arms. One warning- this will cause a lot of laughs and smiles!
I hope you and your baby enjoy this workout as much as my daughter and I do!