This is a guest post from our friend Theresa Brawner of www.diet.st fame:
When you’re a single parent, you’re constantly being both a mother and a father, and that is one of the greatest challenges anyone can face. This is why finding any time for yourself is very close to mission impossible when you’ve got your kids, your house and your job to worry about, not to mention all the responsibilities that come along the way. For single moms it’s very difficult to find time to breathe normally without worrying about this or that, which is why so many of them neglect their need for physical activity that doesn’t include scrambling around at the supermarket. Today we’ll look into what you can do to fit running into your busy schedule and hopefully we’ll give you some boost to get to it.
Don’t Do Everything Alone
Of course you’re a strong independent woman, but when you just don’t have enough time to manage everything, asking for help is completely ok. We all strive to be crazy productive super parents, but it doesn’t always work out and you still need to find time for yourself, so that you can be a better parent for your little ones. Chances are that you know other parents that live in the neighborhood, so why not establish a plan where you take care after each other’s children from time to time, so that you all have some time to just be? For you, this means spending a couple of hours alone with your thoughts, going for a long run and enjoying it without worrying, and your kids get to play with their friends, it’s a win-win situation. There is nothing wrong with asking for assistance when you need some, and you’ll probably be surprised at how willing other parents are to help you out, as you will be there for them when they need it too.
Wake up Earlier
This is an option that isn’t really a favorite among moms that are usually under slept and under constant pressure to get things done from the moment they open their eyes, but it works. Starting your day an hour earlier gives you some leeway to do things just for you and that can be anything, running included. You don’t have worry about your kids tearing down the house while you’re doing your laps, as they’re still sleeping and you’ll still get back in time to get a quick shower and prepare a healthy breakfast for both you and your little ones. You will actually be pleasantly surprised at how much you can accomplish just by waking a bit earlier, as there are no distractions on the way, and you can organize your time as you please.
Find a Running Partner
This is a great tip because you get someone to motivate you to find time for running even when you don’t feel like it. If at all possible, you can join a running group or create one if you know that more parents from the neighborhood would be interested to join. Having someone run with you will cut the excuses for not doing it at the root, plus you will have a great time bonding with new friends, with whom you share many things in common. Besides, being close to your neighbors is always a good idea, you will always have someone to turn to if push comes to a shove and you need help with babysitting or any other life situation.
Treadmill as Plan B
There will be days when you just can’t find the time to get out of house and go for a run and in this case, it’s wise to have a treadmill at hand. It doesn’t have to anything fancy, just a solid piece of equipment that will allow you to stay in shape even when you can’t do your running outside. Treadmill is a practical solution for when you have to stay in the house and keep an eye on everything that’s going on and it gives you space to do something for yourself even when the odds are against you. – Theresa Brawner
Theresa Brawner is a 28-year-old fitness instructor from Boston, MA, who writes articles for www.diet.st in her free time. When she isn’t helping new moms get back in shape, you can find her in the kitchen, working on new recipes.