Adding Exercise

When you’re a busy parent, finding time to exercise can be hard, but the time you spend is worth it. Being active together gives you quality time as a family. It also has tons of health benefits. You don’t need special clothes or equipment to sneak more steps and activity into your day—it all counts as exercise!

The Benefits of Being Active

Regular physical activity helps:

  • Make your bones and muscles strong
  • Improve your mood and mental health
  • Control your weight
  • Reduce your risk of:
    • Heart disease
    • Type 2 diabetes
    • Some types of cancer

Source: Center for Disease Control and Prevention

 

Double the Reward

Daily chores can be a key part of your physical activity. They burn more calories than you may realize!

  • Get your moves on while you sweep, vacuum, or mop. Turn on some music and add a few dance steps or squats as you clean. 
  • Wash the car with your kids. Kids love playing in soapy water.
  • Rake leaves. Make it a contest to see who can rake the most leaves. Decorate or use fun bags, like pumpkin-themed bags at Halloween.
  • Work in the garden. To get some great exercise, dig dirt, lift heavy bags of soil, and squat down to plant flowers or pull weeds. And kids love to play in the dirt, so let them help dig and plant. If you don’t have a garden at home, search online for a community garden.

Mom tip

"We make a game out of catching leaves on a windy day. We see who can catch the most yellow, orange, or red ones. Then we all rake them so we can jump into the piles.” –Cindy

 

Want to know how many calories you’re burning?

Check out the calorie burner calculator.

 

Small Steps Have Big Rewards

There are lots of little ways you can add physical activity to your day.

  • Take the stairs every chance you get.
  • Move during commercial breaks. March in place or do jumping jacks or sit-ups.
  • Instead of walking to get your mail, try doing walking lunges to and from the mailbox.
  • If you sit a lot during the day, get up at least once an hour. Stretch or do arm circles.
  • Take short walks throughout the day. Walk your kid to school, go for a walk on your lunch break, or take a family walk after dinner. Three 10-minute walks are just as good for you as one 30-minute walk!

Small Steps, Big Difference

Take the first step and learn ways to stay fit.