Advice for the Single Parent: Time, Energy and Money for Fitness

Advice for the Single Parent: Time, Energy and Money for Fitness

There are an endless amount of challenges that single parents face every day. Balancing a busy work schedule and raising kids doesn’t leave much time for anything else. Daily exercise and fitness often gets put to the wayside because we feel we don’t have the energy or time in the day to dedicate to an exercise routine. Studies have shown less than half of American adults get thirty minutes of exercise five times a week. But, we need to remember to take care of ourselves. As little as thirty minutes a day of exercise can go a long way towards getting in shape and even preventing heart disease. It is important to make physical fitness a priority for ourselves. Taking care of ourselves enables us to better take care of others. Sticking with a daily routine doesn’t have to take a lot of time, and the added benefits of a healthy lifestyle and extra energy will help you better tackle the challenges of being a single parent.

Where do we find the time and energy? After a busy workday, getting the kids to their soccer game, and making dinner, the last thing we want to do is work out. All our energy and mental focus is gone and we just want to wind down and relax with what little time we have before bed, by spending time with the family. There doesn’t feel like there is enough time to drive to the gym, get your workout done, and drive back, along with all of the other obligations in the day. Even if your gym is close by and you limit yourself to a thirty minute workout, you are looking at least an hour, if not more. This is where exercising at home can be incredibly convenient and a huge time saver. So when should we do it? First thing in the morning. This has several advantages. It is easier to dedicate time first thing in the morning. The kids might still be asleep and you have less emails and other distractions. Also, you are not worn down by the day yet. Working out in the morning can boost your mood and give you more natural energy to start your day. And, once you’ve done it, you’re done. You don’t need to worry about it again for the rest of the day. You can save your gym workouts for days you have more time, like on the weekends for instance.

Building a home gym doesn’t have to be outrageously expensive or take up a lot of space. With just a few reasonably priced purchases you can get what you need to assist you in your fitness goals. A healthy exercise regimen will consist of both cardio and muscular exercise. Here are a few workout and equipment ideas to get you started.

Jump Rope, Walking, and Jogging: A simple jump rope is very inexpensive and provides a great cardiovascular workout, and helps tone your legs. It can also bring some of that joy back from being younger, skipping rope on a playground. Even going for a moderately-paced walk can help you get in shape. Jogging around the neighborhood is another example of a good cardio workout. Try doing it for shorter distances to help build up stamina.

Bodyweight and Resistance Bands: For muscular fitness, there are a variety of options. Bodyweight exercises are an excellent way to get into shape. They utilize multiple muscles and don’t require any equipment, so they’re free. Who doesn’t like free? Some examples of bodyweight exercises are squats, lunges, pushups and dips. Another inexpensive option is resistance bands. These are like large rubber bands that offer resistance as you pull on them, simulating weight-lighting. They are easy to store, lightweight, and you can increase or decrease the resistance to best fit your needs. These are great for muscle toning and stretching.

Yoga: One of the best pieces of home equipment you can buy is a quality yoga mat. Yoga is an excellent form of exercise due to its efficiency. It is one of the best workouts for those with very little time to spare. A quick yoga routine can increase heart rate, stretch, and tone muscles. Yoga can also be very relaxing, so it is a great way to unwind if you need a little break. When shopping for a yoga mat, purchase one with a thicker layer of foam and avoid ones made with PVC chemicals for a healthier home environment. You may have to initially shell out a little more money for a nicer mat, but the thicker ones will last much longer and provide better cushion and support.

Getting just a few pieces of home gym equipment doesn’t have to break the bank and will allow you to fit that quick workout in a busy schedule. Even if you decide to expand on your home gym equipment later on, it is often cheaper than many gym memberships in the long run, and you have everything within reach.

It may seem difficult, but making time to take care of yourself needs to be a priority. There are a lot of people counting on you and you need to take care of yourself so that you can take care of them. Working out at home can save a lot of time and money, and still provide great health benefits. You can purchase relatively inexpensive items or just use your own bodyweight and still get a great workout. Beginning each day with a quick and efficient workout will give you the energy and focus you need to be charged for the day.

Article submitted by Alexis Hall

Photo courtesy of Pexels 

Moving Is Child’s Play: Tips For Moving With Children

Moving Is Child’s Play: Tips For Moving With Children

Okay, so moving isn’t really child’s play, but it can be fun when you involve your children and make it a game. Plus, including your children in the plans and work of moving can help them to be less stressed about the changes going on in their lives.

Here are some tips to make it easier:

  1. Pack their room last and unpack it first in the new home.
  2. Stick to the old meal and bedtime routines throughout the move to give them a sense of familiarity.
  3. Hire movers – you will thank yourself and you’ll have more time to help your children.
  4. Include your kids in some decisions: decorations, new plates, which new park to visit first.
  5. Find child and pet care for moving day to alleviate stress.
  6. Involve your kids in unpacking so they feel more invested.
  7. Prepare them mentally but be prepared for anxiety – adjusting can take up to 6 months.
  8. Get them pumped about their new school by taking a tour or even walking or driving by.
  9. Help them create a memory book of the old house, school, neighborhood, friends, babysitter.
  10. Remember to practice self-care so that you’re on top of your game for your children.

Moving into a new home can be stressful for the entire family, but especially for the kids. By making some thoughtful plans to include them in the decision making and work, you can help ensure that they feel more in control and less stressed. That will make everyone feel better.Screen Shot 2017-11-26 at 10.23.58 PM

Photo Credit: singleparent.info

Blogger: Alexis Hall

Top 100 Single Mom Blogs & Websites

Top 100 Single Mom Blogs & Websites

Heyyyy mommies!!! I wanted to share a website with you of the Top 100 Single Mom Blogs and Websites (we made #60 YEAH!).

It is filled with everything from budgeting, adoption, having twins to mommies finding their true happiness again in life!

Just click this link  to read all about it! And don’t forget to tell us which ones you like the best!

#SingleMomsRock

Joy At the Table from The Trunk of My Car

Joy At the Table from The Trunk of My Car

Heyyyyyy mommies!!!

How often do you and your family eat a meal together? When was the last time you sat down together at a table, with no interruptions, no gadgets, phone or toys and enjoyed each other?? If you can hardly remember, then you’d probably want to keep reading and see how my friend Tia Norman decided to bring JOY to the table by simply writing a note, placing it in a jar. What happens next is so rewarding and therapeutic. Have a try by reading the story here! 

Tia says you can find joy in each day and join the movement by following her on Instagram and Facebook @joytothetable.

Whatever table you find yourself at today I hope it is joy-filled!

 

I Quit My Job: Time Management, Schedules and Big Fat Lies Told to Entrepreneurs

I Quit My Job: Time Management, Schedules and Big Fat Lies Told to Entrepreneurs

The National Black Film Festival was here last week and one of the questions asked was ‘how do you manage your family time’?

When I first left radio, I thought that I would have more time, buuuuuuuuut I was so wrong. Even without a full time job, time still seems to escape me EVERY SINGLE DAY!

I quickly learned that I needed to set a schedule with meditation first on the list in the morning before I drop my daughter off to school. Next, I workout and then begin my day with set ‘work hours’. YES I still have real work hours and though it’s not always consistent, read the story in its entirety here. 

I’m curious to know what works for you – don’t forget to leave a comment!

Be sure to subscribe for updates and exclusive prizes on my page jjonthemic.com and check out the video diary every Thursday at 2PM to keep up with my journey!

#xoxoxo#

JJ