If you’re a mom with a small baby, you know that finding the time and energy to workout can be very difficult. I’ve put together this handy guide to help you squeeze in some exercise, using only your baby and things that you already have around your house.
Pick up your baby. Walk down to the laundry room to get a clean outfit for her out of the dryer. Climb the stairs and go into the baby’s room. Realize you only have one sock. Walk back down to the laundry room. No sock. Spin around in circles in the living room looking for the sock. Go back up to your baby’s room, nearly trip over the cats that are now occupying the stairway. Forget about the sock, it’s a lost cause. Where’s your phone? Go back downstairs. Not there. Go back upstairs. Not there. Realize phone has been in your back pocket the whole time. Now how about that sock?
Repeat 20x daily.
For best results, wait until your baby weighs at least 15 pounds. Twenty pounds is preferable. To test whether or not your baby is heavy enough for this exercise, try holding him or her with one arm. If this makes you say “Urrggggghhhhh,” your baby is probably big enough (no trading with another mom for a smaller baby, though).
Step one: Grasp your baby firmly under his or her armpits. Feel free to tickle your baby if you so desire.
Step two: Quickly raise your baby over your head. Making a “WHEEEEEEEE!” noise is essential for this step.
Step three: Continue lifting your baby in an overhead press until she throws up on your head.
Make sure your baby is cranky and not easily soothed before attempting this. Pick up your baby and sit on an exercise ball. Begin to bounce and attempt to rock your baby to sleep. Continue until your arms fall asleep. And then keep going, because even though your arms are asleep, your baby is not. The numbness means it’s working!
Flexibility and Dexterity
1. You found the sock you were looking for during the cardio portion of your workout! Now pick it up using only your toes. If you have a newborn that frequently naps on you, you must also use your toes to operate the TV remote.
2. You are changing your baby’s diaper and can’t quite reach the clean diaper. Keeping one hand on your baby, leeeaaaaaaaan as far as you can to pick it up with your other hand. Use your toes if your arms don’t reach.
Whew! Good work, mama. Now do it all again tomorrow. And the next day. And the day after that.
(It will get easier. Your muscles adjust, even if you have a butterball of a baby like mine. Just remember that you are a superhero no matter what.)