When you’re a single mother, you have to do it all. You need to care for, feed, and educate your children. You need to spend time with them for play and leisure. On top of that, you also have to earn money. If their father is not doing his part of financially supporting the children, then you are all alone. But how about you? What about the fulfillment of your dreams and your career? How can you take care of yourself? Do you even have time for fitness?
It becomes more daunting when single mothers try to focus on themselves, too. Slowly, they will realize how important it is to maintain a healthy physique. After all, if you don’t take care of yourself, who will take care of your kids when something happens to you? This isn’t just about you. It’s about your kids again and again.
The solutions that work for others may not work for you. That’s okay. Focus on what you can do. Single mothers find it hard to squeeze in a little exercise each day because so many things take their time. They have to feed the dogs, cook meals, clean the house, help the kids with their homework, etc. At the end of the day, you are dead-tired and want to lie down on the bed. Here are some things you can do to squeeze in a bit of time for yourself (do it for yourself and your kids):
Find Classes That Fit You
You don’t have an hour for exercise? That’s okay. All kinds of classes will fit your schedule and needs. Tai Chi classes last for only 20 minutes (or more if you have the time). That’s enough to reap the physical and mental rewards of the art. But if you are going to use Tai Chi for its martial art component, you need at least two hours to practice it. Other classes will improve your physical health. Yoga is good for single mothers, too, because it relaxes the mind and relieves stress.
Exercise With Your Kids
Since you also have to spend time with your kids, why not exercise with them? They’ll love the idea of doing things with you. They don’t even know that they’re helping you achieve your goals. If they are old enough to understand, explain to them that you need to do these exercises to keep you healthy. Playing outdoor games with your kids is going to be fun and physical, too. You can run, hike, or play badminton. You can take them to the beach, so you can all run along the coast. The possibilities are endless if you involve your kids in your exercise routine.
Take Advantage of Down Time
The common misconception about exercising is you need an hour to two hours a day. Ten minutes are just fine to do some quick exercises. High-intensity workouts are great if you want to lose weight. Wake up 15 minutes earlier than your usual time and squeeze in a quick run on the treadmill. Do some breathing exercises. You’re not going to lose weight by deep breathing and stretching, but you’re going to give your muscles enough movement.
Use Your Lunch Break
Even if you are working at home, surely you have a lunch break? Grab a quick lunch and use the rest of the time to do a quick jog or run on the treadmill. High-intensity exercises such as jumping jacks, butt kicks, and skipping work great, too. For single mothers, it’s hard to find time in the morning because you have to prepare the kids for school and then rush to the office or back home for those Zoom meetings.
Find Cheap Alternatives
You don’t need the most expensive workout clothes, the newest devices, or personal trainers. A quick look on the internet will give you ideas on what you should do to stay on top of your physical game. There is a lot you can do with nothing but a pair of sneakers, a yoga mat, and some weights. Free videos on the internet will guide you in the right form.
When you’re a single mother, it feels like you rarely have time for yourself or that you don’t deserve to focus on what you need. It is hard to find the time to take care of yourself, but it’s one of the most important things you will do for your kids. Your moods will also affect them. When you’re confident with your body, you’ll be a happier version of yourself.