As a work-at-home mom of four, I find it incredibly difficult to squeeze any sort of regular fitness routine into my schedule. There’s not many minutes in my life (asleep or awake!) that I can sneak out of the house to run or exercise at the gym. The kids are always with me and there is work to be done!

I tried the Couch to 5k program last year, and I even bought barefoot running shoes, but running just wasn’t my thing. Painfully nonathletic my whole life, I was afraid I was so out of shape and out of time that I might never "find my thing." I'd see friends on Twitter who had fitness challenge buddies to go running together or join in a class at the YMCA. I find it hard enough coordinating my own family’s schedule that I can't begin to imagine arranging a time with another person to exercise with me. I knew in order to be fit and have more energy, I couldn't rely on those excuses. I still have to exercise. So I sneak it in everywhere I can. It might not be regular and it might mean getting up early or going to bed super late, but I'm doing something fit almost every single day, and it works for now.

I was afraid I was so out of shape and out of time that I might never "find my thing."

Getting from A to B

Usually a few days a week I'll need to do some errands. Since the weather has been nice, I try to walk whenever possible. We'll walk to the library or the post office and sometimes the carrot on the end of the stick for me is an iced coffee. Our downtown area is a little under four miles round-trip, and I try to work that in once a week so that I can still get things done while working up a sweat.

Exercise TV

Our cable network has every kind of workout routine you could imagine for free On Demand. I've also heard you can get the same thing online. I happen to love their Pilates, yoga, and cardio episodes — and some of them are only 10 minutes long. Sometimes I'll do a 10-minute workout in the morning, maybe another one after lunch, and then one before bed. And I'll admit there are days that I've only done 10 minutes total — the whole day — but that is better than no minutes!

Field trip!

We're not always stuck at home. When I take the kids out to the park or the beach, I try to work my daily fitness routine into the trip. We can hike the dunes at the beach, go exploring on a long nature trail, or at the park I can work my arms on the monkey bars (only if no one is looking!).

I need the energy that exercise affords to keep up with the daily demands, and I feel better about myself and my body too. It's not simple at first, but it gets easier and the time seems to pencil itself in as you go along. It's a catch-22, but working in that fitness routine every day makes life as a busy work-at-home mom much more bearable!

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