How do you Exercise when you’re a Beginner with young kids?!

Exercising when you're a beginner with Young Kids

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We all know exercise is great for our physical and mental health, with just some of the amazing benefits below:

  • Helps you to control your weight and prevent obesity,
  • Reduces your risk of diseases, including heart disease. Exercise strengthens your heart and improves circulation, this increased blood flow raises oxygen levels in your body and lowers your blood pressure, thus lowering your risk of heart diseases, such as, high cholesterol, coronary artery disease, and heart attack.
  • Helps your body manage blood sugar and insulin levels. Exercise lowers your risk for metabolic syndrome and Type 2 Diabetes as it lowers your blood sugar levels and helps your insulin work better. This is because during exercise, your body burns glycogen (a form of glucose stored in your muscles), and after exercise, your muscles replenish their glycogen stores with glucose from the blood stream, therefore, improving the body’s insulin sensitivity.
  • Improves your mental health and mood. Your body releases chemicals (including endorphins, the chemical that fights stress) when we exercise, which is why it helps to improve your mood and makes you feel more relaxed. This can help you deal with stress and reduces your risk of depression.
  • Improves your thinking, learning, and judgement skills as you age. When you exercise, the body releases proteins and chemicals that improve the structure and function of the brain.
  • Strengthens your bones and muscles. Regular exercise can slow the loss of bone density (reducing the risk of osteoporosis) that comes with age. It also helps maintain or improve your muscle mass and strength, which prevents the risk of injury and falls, weakness, reduced ability to perform daily tasks, and risk of poor balance.
  • As well as many more (I could go on forever!)

But, being a beginner to exercise can be daunting when you’re trying to figure out where to start, what exercises to do that will actually help you reach your goal, and making sure you’re getting the technique right to prevent injury!

However, to make it even more complicated, what about when you’re a BUSY beginner. When you have young kids at home with you that demand your attention every minute of the day (on top of all the other daily tasks – shopping, cleaning, seeing the family…) this can make fitting in exercise even more challenging, in fact, nigh on impossible – until now!

So what’s the best way to start exercising when you’re a Busy Beginner?

Firstly, I’m going to give you my Top 3 Tips on how to start:

  1. Find the time: set aside a week and write down your daily schedule as you do it, highlighting gaps where you could fit in your exercise (think about your kids nap time, days they spend at the grandparents, times when they’re at activities or friends houses). This can vary from small 10 minute gaps, to bigger 30 minute gaps. There is no need to stress about finding an hour out of your day for exercise, I’ll go into why further down. But be prepared to change, unfortunately a day with kids never goes as planned!
  2. Find a plan: Once you’ve found when you can complete your workouts, it’s time to plan what you’re going to do! There’s no point just thinking ‘I’ll do what I feel like when the time comes’ as you’ll probably spend most of the time thinking of exercises or planning what to do (we’ve all been there but unfortunately when you only have a 10 minute gap, it isn’t going to be very productive). I’ll go into how to plan your workouts below.
  3. Make it a habit: Once you’ve find the time and planned your workouts, it’s time to make it a habit! On average it takes 66 days for a new activity to become a habit, so don’t get disheartened if you feel raring to go in week 1 and then completely lost for motivation in week 2. The important thing is to keep pushing (again, 10 Minute Workouts can be a lifesaver here as mentally they’re easy to psych yourself up for them – after all it’ll be over in 10 Minutes!)

But surely 10 Minutes isn’t enough time to reap the benefits?!

Actually, it absolutely is!

A study by Boston University found that short bursts of exercise (lasting less than 10 minutes) can give you the same health benefits as slugging it out in the gym for hours – Now that’s the research we’ve all been waiting for!

Of course, this is ensuring you’re still reaching the recommended weekly guidelines, which for intense exercise the NHS recommends 75 minutes a week – perfect for our daily 10 Minute Workouts. Just add in 5 minutes of gardening, cleaning the house (I wish that was just a 5 minute job!) or walking to the bus stop and you’ve reached your goal!

So 10 Minutes a day is plenty to lose body fat, and build lean muscles – as long as you’re doing the right exercises.

Plus, remember, some exercise is better than nothing, and small things you do can add up to big results!

How do I plan my workouts?

There are a number of ways to plan your workouts, if you’re a frequent gym goer with a basic knowledge of the anatomy you can find many great free exercises on social media that you can put together to form your workout – just make sure they’re from qualified Fitness Professionals otherwise you could be wasting your exercise time – you can check out our Instagram for ideas.

Or alternatively, for a sure fire way to reach your goal, use a set programme by a Personal Trainer, that way you know the workouts are going to be effective.

Our TonedIn10 site is filled with 10 Minute Workouts that focus on the Upper Body, Lower Body and Full Body so you can target the areas you specifically want to, as well as, 10 Minute Stretch Routines (perfect to soothe those achy muscles, or help you relax after a busy day running after your little one), and 2 minute ‘Finishers’ designed to do exactly as they say and finish you off after a workout with a cardio blast!

Perfect for when you:

  • Need a quick workout because your kid won’t nap,
  • Need to relax, sooth and meditate as you didn’t get any sleep last night,
  • Need to take time just for you,
  • Want to feel healthy and like ‘you’ again!

If you’re cleared by your doctor to exercise, you can access a FREE 10 Minute Full Body workout to give you a taste of working out with your own Personal Trainer in your living room! Why not give it a go today – grab yours here.

How do I measure my success?

Firstly, with strength training, you might not see the results on the scale – so piece of advice number 1 – ditch the scales!

This is because, as we strength train we’re aiming to build lean muscle. Now I’m sure you’ve heard of the saying, muscle weight more than fat. What is meant by that is that, 1lb of fat is a whole lot bigger in surface area than 1lb of muscle.

Fat Vs Muscle
Fat Vs Muscle Image from Joannaso.

Therefore, although the scales may stay pretty constant, what is going on in your body (the bits we can’t see) is changing for the better.

So how can we measure our progress?

If you have access to a Body Fat machine, that is a great tool to use, however, not many people have one at home. Therefore, the next best thing is to measure your Inch Measurements (even if you’re using your body fat machine, measure your inch measurements too for an even better picture of your success).

Inch Measurement
Inch Measurement

The areas you should measure are (1) Chest, (2) Left Bicep, (3) Right Bicep, (4) Waist, (5) Abdomen, (6) Hips, (7) Left Thigh, (8) Right Thigh.

Ensure you are measuring the biggest parts of the thighs – usually around the top, and the biggest part of the biceps – usually around the middle (this one is easier to see if you put your arm up like you’re waving). These should be tracked on a monthly basis to see any results, however, remember that burning fat and building muscle mass is a tough job – don’t be disheartened if the results are slow – any change in your measurements is a huge accomplishment!

So what’s my first step?

Go and download the FREE workout we’re giving away so you can get started right now!

Any don’t forget, for most of the exercises you can get your kids involved too (just don’t let them use any heavy weights – you can pretend with things like Marker Pens or the TV remote controls, whilst you use cans of beans or water bottles to make it fun!)

PLUS we have our 14 day ‘Busy Beginner’ Workout Programme!

When you join TonedIn10, as well as access to our extensive Workout Video collection, you’ll also be able to join our Members Only Facebook Group where you can access our 14 Day Busy Beginners Workout Programme, which includes:

  • Daily 10 Minute Workouts for 14 days (each with a new tip, recipe or fact!)
  • 14 Day Meal Plan
  • Nutritional Guide containing 40 delicious recipes
  • Motivational Guide
  • Measurement Tracking
  • Plus, support from us personally through the Facebook Group!

If you have any questions about our TonedIn10 Membership, or the 14 Day Busy Beginner Workout Programme either take a look at our website, Facebook Page, Instagram Page, or message us using the contact form below.

Free 5 Day Email Course

Much love,

Hannah & Caroline xx