by Dr. Shanthi Thomas
Exercise often takes the last place on the priority list of a typical mother. She simply has too much to do in too little time. In the case of a working mother, who has a deskbound job, the whole day is spent sitting at one place. On top of all this is the usual problems of lack of motivation and procrastination. The key to exercise and increased movement is to make it easy to do it and get some reward after doing it. There are many ways in which busy mothers can incorporate movement into their daily schedule:
Sitting, they say, is the new smoking. If you have a desk-bound job or are following a sedentary life, find creative ways to move. Activities that you typically do while sitting or lying down can be done while walking. For example, making or attending a call and chatting with your kids at the end of the day can be done while taking a stroll.
Gardening is not difficult to do, and the reward you get is the pesticide-free vegetables and fruits. If you are the outdoor type of person who doesn’t mind hands and feet getting a little dirty, gardening is a very good option, because it moves all parts of your body. It is very good for mental health too. But if you are an indoor person, don’t worry. You can have plants even on your window sill or balcony. Tending to them and watering them regularly will give you some reason to move.
A standing desk is simply a desk by which you stand, instead of sitting. You can buy a customized one at great expense or just elevate your computer by means of a stack of books to create your own standing desk. Standing, compared to sitting, has benefits for the body. Studies have found that standing after a meal instead of sitting or lying down helps to return your blood sugar levels to normal faster. Standing, rather than sitting, is also related to lower risk of back pain and shoulder pain.
Do you know that just by making some not-so-difficult choices, you can burn calories? For example, take the stairs instead of the elevator. It burns up 150 calories. Also, park your car as far away as possible form the supermarket or mall that you are visiting so that you can walk to the place. The extra walk can help burn calories for you.
Did you know that an intense tidying and cleaning session at your house can burn up to 200 calories per hour? So, send the cleaning lady away and clean one room and washroom a day at home thoroughly. The cleaning should not be just surface cleaning; it should be deep cleaning with your mop going to all corners and crevices of the room.
Playing with your pet is easily one of the most pleasurable activities you can indulge in. Dog owners obviously get to walk their dog and play catch. But even cat owners can invent games such as dangling a ribbon or string in front of the cat and move around so that she will also chase you.
If you have a sedentary job, or even if you are engrossed in household chores, you often forget about the need to move. That is why setting an alarm is immensely useful. As the alarm sounds, you will remember to wake up and do a minimum stretching and walking around.
This works incredibly well. Who wouldn’t like to walk on the treadmill and at the same time watch a movie? Your mind gets enjoyment and relaxation, and your body gets its workout. Even if you are not on the treadmill and are on your office chair, do mini-workouts and stretches.
The app AllTrails a truly a guide for hikers to locate parks and camping spots nearby. It gives the duration, location, distance and difficulty level of the hiking trail. Also, you can view photos and read through reviews from users to select what you like. And the benefits of hiking are obvious.
The Fitbit, as most of you already know, is a wearable device that, among other amazing features, counts the steps that you take in a day to help you get in your ideal shape. A Fitbit does much more than count your steps though, but for your purpose of getting motivation to move as much as possible, it works wonders.
Read also: Top Ten Life Hacks For Working Mothers
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