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Why I Workout With My Toddler

fitmamaguestpostEver since baby bear was just a few months old, she has been in the gym with me. In fact, I’m pretty sure one of the first things she saw was a barbell! Currently, she is 16m old and still doing my workouts with me most days of the week.

And I love it.

If you’re a mama you’ll know that making it to the gym is, ah, an event. Seriously, by the time you have your stuff packed, drive to the gym, workout, shower, come home it pretty much kills two hours. Add in a regular job, cooking, time with babies and you know LIFE and the gym doesn’t exactly hit high on the priority list.

Or, if you’re lucky enough to complete your workouts at home you attempt to do so while your wee one is napping. This type of at home workout comes with  problems all on its own! Of course the second you finish your warm up your baby starts to cry. A quick diaper change and snuggle and you’re back at it only to have to feed them. And the list goes on…

This leaves most mamas frustrated and attempting to complete their workout in twelve minute intervals throughout the day (so it pretty much takes the entire day to get it done!).

Sound familiar?

The truth is, working out without your baby can be next to impossible.

But there’s an alternative of course! Instead of trying to squeeze workouts in during your babes nap when the time can be better spent, workout with your toddler. Yes, I’m serious!

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As I mentioned above, my toddler has been in the studio with me since she was born. Truthfully, I love it. And below are my top three reasons why.

  • It gives my daughter time to play somewhat by herself and to learn and explore. While I’m doing my workout, I’m not right beside her as I usually am trying to teach her. Instead, she learns to figure things out on her own while I watch. It’s amazing what kids will learn when you give them space!
  • In seeing how much I love my workouts I hope that it will help my daughter love physical activity. I don’t care what kind of activity that may be so long as she has something. I truly do love my workouts. And while we’re in the studio I laugh, joke around and play with her between sets. She will never see me “drag” myself to a workout and “suffer” through it. This way, perhaps she will adopt this mindset (a healthy one!) as she gets older.
  • It’s a great way to keep her active. Not only does an active baby sleep better because they burn energy but physical activity at any age is great for kids! My daughter thinks it’s hilarious to mimic me and thus we do our warm up squats together (which is my favorite thing in the world).

Don’t get me wrong. Working out with baby bear can be hectic and slow moving (what with reading books between sets and making sure I know where she is while lifting heavy!). But to me, it’s definitely worth it.

The truth is, working out without your baby is nice… but not always practical. I am much more consistent when I don’t have to schedule around baby bear and instead keep her with me. On top of that, what she gains from being in the gym with me is priceless. She plays with the equipment, mimics me and has a riot learning new “moves”.

I would love if my little one fall in love with fitness, any kind of fitness! And by showing her how fun fitness can be and doing something I love I think she’s well on that path. Plus… I’m able to get my workouts in! Which to me, is always a plus.

What about you, do you workout with or sans your little one?


 

Story TimeMeet Shelby!

 She blogs over at Fit as a Mama Bear. She’s a Strength Coach. Nutrition Coach & Chronic Foodie. But most importantly, mama to a super cute little girl. Shelby enjoys sweaty workouts, tasty meals and trying her best to live holistically (though there’s definitely a lot of trial and error there!). But most of all she loves sharing knowledge on everything parent & health related.

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