How do "single" moms fit lots of exercise in?

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Replies

  • ValerieMartini2Olives
    ValerieMartini2Olives Posts: 3,041 Member
    On the days I am totally off and have no childcare whatsoever, I either won't exercise or we go for a walk or ride the bike with the baby seat.
    If my daughter is at daycare, I'll either go to the gym or ride my bike, a lot of time riding between clients.
    If she is at grandparents', I'll squeeze as much exercise as I can in.
    I just fine any window I can for a half hour of exercise. If I can't, I just eat less.
  • Sheonagolden
    Sheonagolden Posts: 1 Member
    I am a single, full time employee, full time student, and full time mom hahaha. It helps that i am studying Exercise Science and I enjoy fitness. During the week I only work out 30 mins a day; its the perfect amount of time. My daughter is 4, so during that time is when I allow her to play on her electronic for the day (only 30 mins a day). I workout with her in the room, so I can lead by example how to live a fitness lifestyle. I jump rope or do jumping jacks, or high knees for cardio. And i do a workout circuit that is nonstop so I can burn the most calories. If I have more time in the day, and energy, lol, I will do a 30 min workout in the day, and a 30 min workout at night. I have a Fitbit so I make it my goal to hit 10K steps a day (whether i workout or not), and on the weekends I like to walk a lot with my tot. Its doable, and you dont have to wake early in the morning if you dont want to. For my daughter it was all about learning when it was time for Mommy to workout. She had to learn, it wasnt always easy, but she got it. Just like we have dinner time, reading time, bed time, we also have time to exercise. Sometimes she doesn't even watch Mr Maker (her favorit show on YouTube) she gets up and jump around with me lol. Consistancy is key. YOU GOT THIS!!! #teammom
  • bezlooney
    bezlooney Posts: 81 Member
    Im not a single mom but my husband works a ton and has never helped with the kids who are now 13 and 6 years old. I own and singlehandedly run a busy cafe and do all the paperwork for our landscaping buisness and have for 12 years all while raising my kids without daycare or any help. Of the 12 years i have gotten a workout in almost everyday. I wake up at 5am and get in a 1 1/2 hour workout before i get the kids on the bus and head to the cafe. You make time for things that matter!
  • slowrollem
    slowrollem Posts: 55 Member
    I am a single, full time employee, full time student, and full time mom hahaha. It helps that i am studying Exercise Science and I enjoy fitness. During the week I only work out 30 mins a day; its the perfect amount of time. My daughter is 4, so during that time is when I allow her to play on her electronic for the day (only 30 mins a day). I workout with her in the room, so I can lead by example how to live a fitness lifestyle. I jump rope or do jumping jacks, or high knees for cardio. And i do a workout circuit that is nonstop so I can burn the most calories. If I have more time in the day, and energy, lol, I will do a 30 min workout in the day, and a 30 min workout at night. I have a Fitbit so I make it my goal to hit 10K steps a day (whether i workout or not), and on the weekends I like to walk a lot with my tot. Its doable, and you dont have to wake early in the morning if you dont want to. For my daughter it was all about learning when it was time for Mommy to workout. She had to learn, it wasnt always easy, but she got it. Just like we have dinner time, reading time, bed time, we also have time to exercise. Sometimes she doesn't even watch Mr Maker (her favorit show on YouTube) she gets up and jump around with me lol. Consistancy is key. YOU GOT THIS!!! #teammom

    I love this! :smiley: What a great perspective. MOM POWER!
  • Leka1000
    Leka1000 Posts: 160 Member
    I am a single mom and the solo parent to my kids. In order to fit in exercise I commute to work by bus in the morning and then walk home at the end of the day. My kids are old enough to be home alone now so I go to the pool for waterfit or go out for a run in the evenings after everyone is fed and settled. When they are at friends houses or otherwise occupied I go for long hikes.
    I will be starting in-home resistance exercise of some sort in September.

    ps. if you have a husband or partner even if s/he is away a lot you are in no way a single parent. I have been there too and it is worlds different from being the sole provider and caregiver for the kids and the only person in the world to worry after them as a parent would. There is no comparison.

    Why would you even mention this? I wasn't comparing anything.....

    It will be much easier for me when my kid of old enough to stay home alone. He is only 3.

  • Leka1000
    Leka1000 Posts: 160 Member
    bezlooney wrote: »
    Im not a single mom but my husband works a ton and has never helped with the kids who are now 13 and 6 years old. I own and singlehandedly run a busy cafe and do all the paperwork for our landscaping buisness and have for 12 years all while raising my kids without daycare or any help. Of the 12 years i have gotten a workout in almost everyday. I wake up at 5am and get in a 1 1/2 hour workout before i get the kids on the bus and head to the cafe. You make time for things that matter!

    Awesome! Gettin ER done!!!

  • Leka1000
    Leka1000 Posts: 160 Member
    Alot of my time is spent cleaning....lol aka clean freak...I need to calm down on this I think. Please my sister is moving close to me soon!!! This means babysitter!!!! Yay! Hello badminton! Hello weights AT THE GYM.
    My days are usually:
    630am wake up
    715am leave home to take kid to day care
    8-4pm work
    4-445 stop at grocery store or some place
    5-630pm cook, clean kitchen & lving room
    630pm-7 relax
    7-9pm - more cleaning up, bathing kid, out for walk with kid, running to more stores
    9pm - kids bed time
    930-10pm - lunch prep and possibly meal prep for next day supper
    10pm - weights and/or cardio at home IF I HAVE THE ENERGY!
    11pm - already sleeping usually
  • sophomorelove
    sophomorelove Posts: 193 Member
    i was in your situation untill very recently (husband worked nights and week ends at a low paying unskilled labor job, and I am a full time engineering student, also working) our kid is almost 3 now. it seemed impossible, I always felt guilty and it was hard to have time for myself when I had so many other things to do: chores, homework, quality time with my kid, extra work etc. when I could, I exercised 30 -60min during my daughters nap, got up ealier or stayed up later. I got her her own yoga mat and she sometimes exercises with me to the YouTube video. in general, even if it's impossible to fit in a workout, I make an effort to be active with my kid. take her to the playground every chance I get, make up active games, piggy back rides etc.
    PS to those who are offended by the name of your thread, there are quotation marks around "single", so op makes it clear that there's no comparison intended. plus, some of us with inparticipating husbands have no other help from either side of the family. we practically live alone with the kid, there's no safety net, no one to come help us when we're sick taking care of a sick child, and then have responsibilities such as school and work. Oftentimes all we see from our spouse is a paycheck, so it does seem comparable to being single.
  • Asher_Ethan
    Asher_Ethan Posts: 2,430 Member
    When I was a single mom I would wake up at 5 every morning to run in my treadmill while my child was sleeping. Then some days on my lunch break at work I would drive 10 minutes to the gym, 30 minute workout, 10 minutes to make myself some-what presentable, and 10 minutes back to work. If you REALLY want to exercise you will find the time.
  • Leka1000
    Leka1000 Posts: 160 Member
    OMG I forgot to mention that I DO fit in exercise during lunch time at work! 25min walks 2-3 times a week...
  • Leka1000
    Leka1000 Posts: 160 Member
    I wish there was a healthy energy pill! LOL. I want crazy energy like my kid has! Then it would be easy to exercise in the evenings!!! go go go!!! Im dreaming,.....
  • urloved33
    urloved33 Posts: 3,325 Member
    My kids are grown now but I brought them to the gym w me and they trained there as well...they were involved in competetive swimming and tai kwon do (black belts) and basketball...fun fun fun things on a daily basis.
  • Sharon_73
    Sharon_73 Posts: 189 Member
    I have been a single mom for 14 years now. I work 2 jobs but my part time job on Saturday and Sunday is only 6 hours a day instead of 8 (Paying to put my kids through college!) My kids are 16 and 19, so childcare isn't an issue but I am still mom and have family responsibilities .

    I take half of my lunch break to go for a walk or run and then I go directly to the gym after work for a 1 hour workout. When all is said and done, I am home by 6:30. I do my meal prep in the evenings and quite often I will cook two nights worth of dinner so I am able to have a bit of a break on "leftover" night.

    It is a matter of juggling your time but it can be done. All a matter of priorities and knowing your own limits! There is no one size fits all answer, but it can be done and once you get in to a routine that works for you and your family you will be glad you did!
  • Sharon_73
    Sharon_73 Posts: 189 Member
    ps. if you have a husband or partner even if s/he is away a lot you are in no way a single parent. I have been there too and it is worlds different from being the sole provider and caregiver for the kids and the only person in the world to worry after them as a parent would. There is no comparison. [/quote]

    I agree very much with this comment! Being a single parent isn't only about physically being alone with the kids.
  • JenMc14
    JenMc14 Posts: 2,389 Member
    edited August 2015
    I am not single, but I do work full time. I get up between 4:30 and 5:00 am most week days. I get in my workout, shower, and wake up my youngest (my oldest gets herself up, typically, I'll wake her up if she's not up when she needs to be during the school year.) I get myself and the younger one ready and out the door, typically before 7:00.
  • Leka1000
    Leka1000 Posts: 160 Member
    Sharon_73 wrote: »
    ps. if you have a husband or partner even if s/he is away a lot you are in no way a single parent. I have been there too and it is worlds different from being the sole provider and caregiver for the kids and the only person in the world to worry after them as a parent would. There is no comparison.

    I agree very much with this comment! Being a single parent isn't only about physically being alone with the kids. [/quote]

    Yes I agree too but it is in NO WAY relevant to my post.....I wasn't comparing and it is clearly indicated that I am NOT single.
  • Jennloella
    Jennloella Posts: 2,287 Member
    edited August 2015
    I work full time and go to school (a full load). I have four kids 12, 9, 2, 1 - my husband works 15 hour days and is often out of town 10-26 days out of the month. I prep meals on sunday and work out six days a week for two hours average by waking up at 430 and doing it before the kids wake up.
  • rainbowbow
    rainbowbow Posts: 7,491 Member
    WARNING: THIS IS A SUPER LONG POST I AM SO SORRY.

    Not single. Not a parent. So feel free to ignore anything i have to say, but...

    Here's what I suggest and what i'd do personally if i were in your shoes:

    First of all, get some sort of planner. You sound like a clean and organization freak like I am, so i highly recommend something like the Erin Condren or Kiki K planner variety.

    On sunday nights before your week begins a new you should plan absolutely everything out. Day by day, hour by hour if you must. 3-4 days a week of exercise should be more than enough, so you don't have to worry about it everyday!

    Something like this sounds more enjoyable and efficient to me:

    5:45 am wake up and do morning cleaning routine
    6:00 am complete a 30 minute workout to start your day
    6:30 am begin getting ready for work and getting the kid up
    7:15 am leave home to take kid to day care
    8-4 pm work
    4-4:45 pm stop at grocery store/necessary shopping ONLY
    5-6:30 pm cook, and perform any necessary nighttime cleaning routine
    6:30 pm-8:30 relax and interact with your child
    8:30 pm Bath time for your child
    9pm - kids bed time
    9:30-10 pm - GO TO SLEEP! +( meal prep time on every 3-4 days)


    I will include a sample of my cleaning routine which keeps my house spotless and visitor ready at all times (of course I have no idea what you have in your house so it's impossible for me to get this a hundred percent) this can be maintained all of the time!


    I use something called the 1 minute rule. This means that if any one thing needs to be done and it takes LESS than a minute, JUST DO IT RIGHT THEN AND THERE! DONT PUT IT OFF!

    I also always set a timer in my alloted intervals because it keeps me motivated to complete the task in the allotted time. If it goes over time, i just stop right then and there and MOVE ON! I never get stuck on one task for a long time because it's just not worth it.

    Mondays:
    • AM:
    Set timer to 3 minutes:
    Make Bed.

    Set timer to 5 minutes:
    Tidy Up- Walk Around(do a quick inspection and walkaround, anything that isn't in it's dedicated place gets put where it belongs. This does not include cleaning/washing/wiping anything or ANYTHING extra!)

    Set timer to 4 Minutes:
    Unload Dishwasher.

    Set timer to 3 minutes:
    Squirt toilet cleaner in each toilet

    Total AM time: 15 minutes

    • PM:

    Set timer to 5 minutes:
    Scrub all toilet bowls and wipe down toilet seat/lid with antibacterial wipes.

    Set timer to 10 minutes:
    Wipe down bathroom countertops, Spot clean mirrors with a microfiber towel and water (no need to fully clean), And spray down tub/shower stall with a generic no-scrub bathroom cleaner. Rinse out.

    Before bed:
    Set timer to 8 minutes:
    Load dishwasher and start it.


    Total PM time cleaning: 23 minutes

    Total time cleaning On Mondays: 43 minutes


    Tuesdays:
    • AM:

    Make Bed. (3 minutes)Tidy Up- Walk Around. (5 minutes) Unload Dishwasher. (4 minutes) Dump all clean laundry on made bed (this way no sleeping before it's put up!). (2 minutes) (14 minutes total)


    • PM:

    Fold laundry and put away clothes (20 minutes). Load dishwasher and start it. (8 minutes) (28 minutes total)

    Total cleaning time Tuesdays: 42 minutes


    Wednesdays:
    • AM:

    Make Bed. (3 minutes)Tidy Up- Walk Around. (5 minutes) Unload Dishwasher. (4 minutes) Pour some baking soda down the drain in your kitchen sink and a cup of vinegar into your dishwasher.


    • PM:

    Wipe down counters/surfaces in your kitchen. (8 minutes) Pour a kettle of boiling vinegar down your drain and turn the disposal ON (note: this also keeps your kettle limescale free) (3 minutes). Scrub your kitchen sink down with a magic eraser and some vinegar. Then spray with rubbing alcohol and buff with a microfiber. (this works for stainless sinks and leaves them super shiny) (5 minutes)

    Total cleaning time Wednesdays: 25 minutes

    Thursdays:
    • AM:

    Make Bed. (3 minutes)Tidy Up- Walk Around. (5 minutes) Throw any clothes in the washing machine and set on delay timer. (8 minutes)


    • PM:

    Fold laundry and put away clothes (20 minutes). Load dishwasher and start it. (8 minutes)

    Total cleaning time Thursdays: 44 minutes

    Fridays:
    • AM:

    Make Bed. (3 minutes)Tidy Up- Walk Around. (5 minutes) Unload Dishwasher. (4 minutes)


    • PM:

    Vaccuum and Mop all floors room by room, section by section. (35 minutes or 8 minutes per room)

    Total cleaning time Fridays: 47 minutes

    Saturdays:
    • AM:

    Make Bed. (3 minutes)Tidy Up- Walk Around. (5 minutes) Unload Dishwasher. (4 minutes)

    • PM:
    OFF FROM CLEANING!

    Total cleaning time Saturdays:12 minutes

    Sundays: Grocery Shopping, Any areas that need intensive and thorough cleaning (should be minimum because every area is kept generally clean).

    Food prep. This includes washing all fruits and veggies before going in the fridge, chopping any fruits/veg that will be used in food prep. Prepping anything in your weekly meal plan that can be done in advance.

    Any writing out your Weekly planner for the next week. I like to take this time to pre-log MFP with my meals as well that way i know what i'm eating.


    I think waking up and getting the workout out of the way when you have time to focus SOLELY one yourself before anyone else is up and about is good because you can put the maximum effort in before you're exhausted at the end of the day. I think doing these small cleaning things here and there in a routine and pattern makes it easy because you are never just spending A TON of time hours upon hours cleaning with a house that always feels dirty. Of course you can delegate out some of these items to your spouse or your child like picking up after themselves, making their bed, etc. It's good to get your child (2 years+) in the habit of doing this themselves DAILY.

    I know this is long and probably intimidating, but i love having a schedule like this because I never have to worry about having guests over. I come home to a clean house and live in an environment where i feel relaxed and comforted not stressed and anxious. I know what i'm eating, and because i've prepped/chopped stuff I can just really pour and sautee/heat on most meals. I always eat leftovers from dinner for lunch the next day and have fruits/veggies/snacks both cleaned and ready-to-go at any time i'm feeling snacky so i never have to stray.

    I hope this helps! It took me a while to type this out. heehee

  • zoeysasha37
    zoeysasha37 Posts: 7,089 Member
    Bring kids to gym and have them sit in the child care room.
    I only go to gyms with child care. They color, play, watch movies. And they even have kids fitness for an extra fee. So the kids work with a trainer doing child level fitness gamea while the parents can go exercise.
  • Leka1000
    Leka1000 Posts: 160 Member
    Jennloella wrote: »
    I work full time and go to school (a full load). I have four kids 12, 9, 2, 1 - my husband works 15 hour days and is often out of town 10-26 days out of the month. I prep meals on sunday and work out six days a week for two hours average by waking up at 430 and doing it before the kids wake up.
    OMG!!! How do you find the energy!!!