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March 17, 2011

Written by Contributing Writer, Sarah Farthing

Finding time to take care of ourselves is a challenge most parents of young children have in common.   I find this ironic because when else in our lives do we need the energy that staying healthy provides more than when our children are little?!

I have been focusing on improving my overall health and making a serious effort to somehow fit regular exercise into my weekly routine.  For me it has to be working out from home; it’s just not feasible any other way in our house.   Every family schedule is different but no matter how you slice it, working out from home is a convenience that’s hard to beat.   Whether it’s a walk, a run or a workout video in the house, there’s no commute and, unless you decide to invest in serious exercise equipment, the cost is minimal!

In the summer and fall I did well because I could get out with the kids on their bikes and get a pretty good walk in.  Then the temperature dropped and I needed another plan.   I decided to try Jillian Michaels – 30 Day Shred dvd, available for $9!!, and I love it.

Here’s what I like about it:

  • It has three levels of workouts and each workout is less than a half hour and moves you quickly through cardio, strength and ab circuits so it has never felt monotonous.
  • There is an ‘easy’ person to follow and a ‘hard’ person to, well, not follow in my case!
  • I can select a music only option and not have to listen every time to instruction that I’ve heard before.

What I’m excited to add to my routine next is Zumba.  Conveniently, there are Zumba classes for adults at the gymnastics academy 2 minutes from our house.  Unfortunately, they don’t start early enough for me to get there before my husband leaves for work.   So instead, I will be trying this:

Zumba Fitness Total Body Transformation System DVD Set

My aunt and cousins love this dvd set and they stress how much fun it is to do with your family.  They feature the inventor of Zumba, “Beto” Perez, as the instructor.  I like the idea of learning from the person that started it and isn’t it so nice to have someone else try before you buy?  There was also some mention of learning new dance moves for the club, which is hilarious because I’m sure I have usually been sleeping for 4 hours by the time clubs even open, hah!

We polled our fans on facebook and here’s what else they are doing at home to keep fit:

Have you tried any of these?   I would love to hear what works for you at home and why you like it!

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  1. Heidi Farmer

      on March 17, 2011 9:37 am

    I too, tried the Jillian Michaels 30 Day Shred. Love the 20 minutes!! It’s easy to talk myself into when I know it’s quick, quick.


  2. RLR

      on March 17, 2011 10:49 am

    I am always SOOO hesitant to work out at home – too much distraction! I don’t even run in my neighborhood (so a 45-minute run takes at least an hour and a half since I usually meet someone across town).
    I always worry that I might be wasting money if I buy a DVD/Wii game. What if I don’t like it? But I DO appreciate the recommendations – and I think I’ll see if there’s any yoga on demand through our cable company!


  3. Julie

      on March 18, 2011 9:25 am

    I so need to get into shape, but so don’t want to do the work. However, using Just Dance 2, doesn’t seem like work at all. I love everytime that I play it that it works up a sweat and I’m having fun doing it.
    I have wanted to try Zumba for a while,but haven’t yet. I don’t know anyone to go with locally, etc. A high school friend talked to me about it at our reunion last summer. She is doing it and loving it. Would love a follow-up blog post about if Zumba worked for you or not.


  4. Julie G.

      on March 18, 2011 12:31 pm

    We found a GREAT local gym which has a kids gym, not a nursery. The boys love to go. They get a workout and get the extra energy out, while I am in the “big people gym”. The great thing is they ask to go… I have no excuse not to be healthy and in shape. I really recommend trying to find a gym like this, it’s a little more expensive, but so worth it to teach our whole family about being active!


  5. monkygm

      on March 18, 2011 1:14 pm

    My almost 3 year-old son LOVES the kids yoga On Demand… we do it together in the morning and then again before bed! So much fun!


  6. Mama Nolte

      on March 18, 2011 7:17 pm

    Maybe I could start with Kids Yoga!
    My husband and I started with a Tunturi exercise bike in the early 80’s. I bought a small TV and was determined to stay on that bike during a 30 min. show. Through the years we have added equipment from yard sales and gifts to each other. You have to have the space for this type of set up and our unfinished basement works for us.


  7. Sarah

      on March 18, 2011 10:34 pm

    I would love to do a follow-up post and tell you how Zumba goes for me. Great idea, Julie! And Julie G, what’s the name of your gym? We don’t have one like that near us but I wanted to look that up.


  8. Annie

      on April 1, 2011 6:14 pm

    I recently got the Jillian Shred it With Weights, kettlebell workout and it’s pretty awesome. Like you mentioned, it’s only 30 minutes and she does a great job of incorporating cardio + weights so I actually feel like my heart rate gets up there to be doing something!


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