8 Tips For Exercising At Home

I'm writing this post as a follow-up to one I wrote last week, where I talked about my struggle to find the time and energy to work out, especially now that I am in my third trimester of pregnancy. I received feedback from other moms wanting to talk more in-depth about how I successfully work out at home. For so many reasons, working out at home is the only way that many Moms can stay in shape.

The pitfalls, however, are many. At a gym, set schedules and classes can help to maintain motivation and accountability. At home, though, it is so easy to procrastinate and to allow all of the many distractions (i.e. kids, chores, phone calls) to come between you and your commitment to exercise.

For me, it is a constant challenge to find ways to do be more consistent and efficient with my workouts. I am far from perfect when it comes to this topic! Nonetheless, I will share my list of tips and hope that other moms will share their best advice as well.

1. Commit to a time of day: Resolve to exercise before the kids get up or during your child's nap time. Consistency and routine are crucial.

2. Try not to break your exercise appointment with yourself. The dishes, laundry and phone calls can wait.

3. Invest in efficient, motivating equipment. Have other options so you can mix things up and deflect boredom. I've had a spin bike for 8 years. I recently purchased an elliptical machine. For toning, I have a few dumbbells, an exercise ball and a Total Gym (the one Chuck Norris sells). I also have a Windsor Pilates tape that I occasionally use.

4. Invest in a comfortable exercise room. Is it big enough, warm enough? In our old house I had my equipment in the basement, but I hated going to the basement because it was so cold. It became yet another reason to skip workouts. Now my equipment is down the hall in our rec room. No more excuses! Also, if you have equipment, make sure you consider your child's safety and access to the room.

5. Don't talk yourself out of a truncated workout . 15 to 20 minutes of cardio is better than none.

6. Put together several workout playlists for your iPod. Great music helps workouts go by faster.

7. TIVO or record your favorite shows. You'll have an incentive to exercise -- you'll get to watch your favorite shows!

8. Purchase a cute, flattering workout outfit. They're not just for gym rats. If you look good, you feel good.

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