Moms, we live in a balancing-act kind of world. We have to juggle kids, spouses, cleaning, cooking, work (in or out of the home), and oh yes, we have to take care of ourselves somewhere in there.
Keeping ourselves healthy is so important, no matter what that looks like, and exercise is an awesome way to start. But who else knows it’s hard to work out with kids? Exercise takes time, and sometimes money if you use a gym.
I’ve covered how to exercise with young children for the time issue, and now I want to show you my favorite resources for cheap and free workouts- no equipment or gym required! You can do these in your home, whether the kids are sleeping or doing it with you, and they range from 10-40 minutes.
When I say “no equipment”, I mean no dumbbells or weights that you have to go out and buy. I do recommend a yoga mat to keep from slipping, and the obvious water and towel for when you work really hard.
It’s amazing how you can find just about anything on Youtube. I’ve tried a few different workouts, and here are my favorites:
- NerdFitness– Yes, I’m a total nerd. But if you visit the NerdFitness website and read people’s stories, you’ll see determination from the video-game obsessed who just want to get healthier. Steve, the owner of NerdFitness, teaches you the basics of exercise and how you feel like you “level up” when you move to a harder workout. This channel teaches you proper form of different moves, and has a couple bodyweight routines that you can try.
- FitnessBlender– This Youtube channel has over 500 workouts you can choose from, and they range from 10 minutes to 40 minutes and beyond. If you’re short on time, a lot of these are perfect! There are HIIT workouts, strength training (some with weights, some without), pilates, and more. The ones I’ve tried and enjoyed are Can You HIIT Like a Girl? and Wake Up and GO HIIT workout. With over 500 workouts on this channel, you’re bound to find one you like!
- PiYo– PiYo is pretty much my soulmate workout. It’s a program from Beachbody and it’s the first program I tried when I started my weight loss journey in 2015. PiYo combines pilates, yoga, cardio, and strength training to help you lose weight and gain muscle. Since then I’ve lost 25 pounds (not just from PiYo, mind you) and gained a lot of strength. I highly recommend you actually buy the DVD set because you can’t find these exact workouts on Youtube, but if your budget is tight, the Youtube videos do a pretty good job. I like this one by Melissa McAllister, who was in some of the PiYo DVDs.
Your local library is a great source for finding free workouts! I’ve snagged a few that I never would have bought but was fun to try out for a few weeks. I don’t know if your library does this, but if no one has requested my DVD after 3 weeks,, my library will automatically renew it, up to 5 times. That’s over 3 months of being able to keep my DVD! Here are the two things I look for at the library:
- Workout DVDs– I mentioned DVDs a little bit above, but you’d be surprised what you can find at the library! Mine even has a few Beachbody videos; I once checked out Hip Hop Abs and couldn’t stop laughing during the entire video. My body was not meant to do some of the things this guy does. If you have a favorite trainer, just search your library and see what comes up!
- Books– The library is a VERY good resource for books on nutrition and recipes, and even for exercise. The book I have checked out right now is “Body By You” by Mark Lauren. It’s a 12-week program of bodyweight exercises that progress in difficulty each week, and is designed for women. There are 5 categories of exercise, like squats and pushups, and each category has 25 levels of difficulty. If you’re goal and number oriented, this is a pretty fun way to track your progress and see how high you can go.
If you’re here because you’re just getting started and are overwhelmed with options, you’re not alone. I know that starting is hard. Trust me, working out the first few times is one of the most difficult things. It takes awhile to find your groove, but once you do, you’ll totally rock this! Use the resources above to find something you like, and please let me know what you come up with! I’m always looking for new workout ideas.
Be sure to check out all the posts in my ABCs of Frugal Living series!