Being a mom is a full time job on its own, for many of us, working out is a luxury that takes time, money, and precious energy. Having finally gotten down to my pre-baby weight, I’m now working toward my second goal of losing the extra 10 pounds I put on in college. As the new Hot Mom’s editor I know that we can achieve our goals when we learn the strategies that lead to success. My first step was remembering that getting back in shape is definitely worth it. Everyone should have at least three motivators; for me they were:
1. Being able to fit into my pre-baby clothes
2. Having the energy and stamina to keep up with my kids
3. Teaching my children healthy eating, drinking, and exercising
Once I got myself motivated I had to overcome the basic obstacles to working out. For me they are lack of time, potential cost of the necessary equipment, and a lack of energy. I have always been active so I knew it wasn’t going to work for me to read a book, watch tv, or listen to music. Those methods sometimes held my attention but usually meant me dreading my next workout session. Instead I found a way to ALWAYS hit the gym, and look forward to it. That’s when I coined the term “laptop diet”.
This is a strategy that works best with a laptop, but it can also work with anything that is well… “work” and requires a good bit of your attention. Some great tasks are balancing your budget, checking your stock portfolio, writing those cards that are way down on the to-do-list, and of course, actual work from your job. It may seem weird and at first you may be a little self-conscious but trust me, you will consistently drop the pounds because you will not want to miss an aerobic session.
This morning I had chores that kept me busy during my usual workout time. By the time I took the kids to school I was hungry and just wanted to get to work. Then I remembered that I had to work anyway so why not burn some calories while doing it. Needless to say, that’s why I’ve spent 45 minutes on the elliptical writing and editing this article. If you’re skeptical, give it a try. Here are a few tips I’ve learned:
1. Always be aware of your laptop, not just that you don’t leave it unattended, but that you make sure it’s not sliding or is in a position to fall
2. When selecting aerobic equipment, pick a machine that has handles or supports that can support the laptop and keep it from falling
3. Pick the most challenging, most thought-intensive task on your list; before you know it, you’ll wish you could add another 30 minutes on the machine (and if you have the luxury, please do some extra time, but don’t overdo it, remember getting healthy is a marathon, not a sprint)
4. As much as possible, work out first thing in the morning before you eat, but drink plenty of water
5. Work out at least 3 days a week
The great part about the laptop diet… I find that I can only fit in one “rest day” per week. Again, since I work out while working, I look forward to multi-tasking and achieving a work goal and a health goal. Plus, it always helps that I see the results at weigh in, when I try on my clothes, and when I hear my daughter say “okay mommy, let’s exercise” and I can run around with them until THEY get tired.
Since weight-loss is a two part strategy of exercise and eating, my next article will emphasize some strategies that let me eat what I want, in moderation, while consistently dropping the pounds.