Happy New Year! Not that you’re even reading, because surely you’re all recovering from your various thrilling New Year’s Eve festivities, which probably included bubbly beverages and steamy midnight kisses.
My own evening featured an illicit 5 PM Red Bull, so I’d have a fighting chance at staying awake to watch the Space Needle fireworks at 12 AM, at which point I kissed my bottle of Tums for helping to keep the worst of my pregnancy-induced acid reflux at bay.
Yeah, don’t try and tell me I don’t know how to party.
Anyway, I have been thinking vaguely about New Year’s resolutions, and how being a giant third-trimester whale on January 1st really goes a long way towards getting you off the hook on those damn things. My resolution for 2008: have healthy child, maintain sanity afterwards.
I know there will come a time, though, when my thoughts will turn from the daily chaos of newborn + toddler to the state of my body. While I have no plans to make life even more stressful by fretting over the inevitable postpartum disrepair, I know from experience that getting back in shape will make a huge difference in my emotional well-being and overall productivity.
With that in mind, and the fact that most New Year’s goals tend to involve dealing with our waistlines, forgive me for going the predictable route on this post and recommending some fitness products. Earlier in 2007 (before I got knocked up and everything went to hell) I was in a really good exercise groove, and I’d like to share the things that worked excellently for me—as a busy mom with not a lot of time to invest in gym visits. If working out is the last thing you want to be thinking about right now, please enjoy this great forum thread instead.
Turbo Jam Workout. So this DVD pretty much changed my entire body, and I really can’t recommend it enough. The hardest part about establishing an exercise program for me was finding the time to do it, and eliminating excuses not to do it, and that’s where having a DVD you work out to at home makes a big difference. Finding 45 minutes in your day is doable, and you don’t have to leave the damn house. You can read my review of this particular workout here, but in short: it will kick your ass, and then your ass will be five times smaller. IT WORKS.
Resistance bands. Rubber resistance bands are also a fantastic way to work out without going to a gym or investing a lot of time into your routine. When I was being diligent about using these, I got actual tricep muscles for the first time, like, EVER. I could use them while watching TV, playing with Riley, whatever. They’re cheap, require no learning curve, and you will get results. (More blah-blah from me on these things here.)
iPod Shuffle. After I’d been doing the workout DVDs long enough to feel like I was getting in better shape, and that I needed some variety, I started jogging. I wasn’t particularly good at running, and oh my god it sucked at first, but it has to be hands down the best stress reliever I’ve ever experienced. I know I was a better parent when I was jogging, because I burned off so much frustration and impatience on those runs. Getting out of the house and hitting the pavement did unbelievably good things to my brain chemistry, and got me into a pair of size 6 pants for the first time in years. The one product that made all the difference in terms of staying motivated (and not turning back the minute my breathing started to resemble a dying wildebeest) was the iPod Shuffle I wore clipped to my shirt—music was mission-critical, and the Shuffle is a perfect delivery mechanism.
Inhale Yoga Show with Steve Ross. The last thing I’ll recommend is the Inhale yoga show on the Oxygen Network. I used to record the show on our DVR and every other night or so I’d do the routine along with Mr. Freaky Steve Ross. This took away some of my free evening time, but it always made me feel amazing afterwards. It’s a challenging workout, and after you’ve seen a few shows the music gets kind of annoying, but man, it’s worth it. It will make you leaner, bendier, and zenlier.
Now I feel totally guilty for slacking off on all this stuff during my pregnancy, and essentially reverting back to the sloth I was beforehand. Well, I’m hoping after the baby is born I can gradually get back into some of these routines. Somehow. I know it will be a challenge, but I also know it’s important for me to invest time into my own health and well-being.
Do you have any tips on fitting fitness into your busy life? Product must-haves, or routines that work for you? Please share!