Workouts for stay at home moms (dads)



Being a stay at home mom or dad can be tougher than people think. Between the household chores, grocery shopping, taking care of the kids, driving them to soccer/karate or whatever, there just doesn’t seem to be time for anything else. Even worse if there’s a baby or sick child at home. How the hell do you find time to workout?. You must think I’m nuts, workout, pshhhhh. Believe it or not, you can. We’ll try to solve this problem with some convenient workouts for stay at home moms (dads). But first:


Schedule Time!


The first thing you need to do is schedule time during the day. On different days you might have different things going on. It may not always be easy to schedule the same time each day. Still, make it a point to schedule time on your iPhone or Android calendar. You tend to keep to appointments or pre-arranged times for other activities. So do the same for your workout. Okay enough talk, here we go.


10 minute workouts

These are very short intense workouts that you can do everyday. C’mon you must have at least 10 mins somewhere during day. This is a bit broad and can incorporate a number of different exercises. If you have an exercise bike, you can do 2 mins at an easy pace then 1 min as hard and fast as you can. Push, push, push, it’s just one min. Then slow again for 2 mins and repeat. So a cycle would be 2 easy| 1 hard |2 easy |1 hard |2 easy| 1 hard and 2 easy. Yes, I know how to count, but 11 mins?…close enough!. You can do the same thing by running on a treadmill or jumping rope.


7 minute app workout                                                                                      

Yup, there’s an app for that. There’s the official Johnson & Johnson app, Wahoo fitness and  the NY times blog app to name a few. They all feature bodyweight exercises which include squats, push ups, lunges, jumping jacks and bicycle crunches to name a few. Take it with you wherever you go. The most you will need for beginner workouts is a chair for step ups. The exercises are high intensity and help with both strength and conditioning. Look, I’m taking away all excuses, 10 mins too long, well here you go 7 mins.


Get a jogging stroller                                                                                                                              

If you have a baby or toddler at home get a jogging stroller. This way you can go to the park or wherever suits you best. A brisk walk, jog or run is no longer a problem. Chances are your kid will love it. So, you get time to workout and best of all you don’t have to find a babysitter. Hey, take your kid to the park (walk, jog, run, to warm up) and do the 7 or 10 min workout there. If you like biking then get a bike trailer. Put the kids in the back and tow them along. If they are old enough, have them bike with you.


The Bodyweight 200


From Men’s Health, the Bodyweight 200 is an excellent workout you can do 3 times/ week. If you’re taking your kids to the park anyway, you can do this workout. You have everything you need (Chin up bar and inverted row bar at the jungle gym). The routine is as follows:

  • 30 Prisoner Squats
  • 30 Pushups
  • 10 Jumps
  • 10 Stability Ball Leg Curls
  • 10 Stability Ball Jackknifes
  • 20 Step-Ups
  • 5 Pullups
  • 30 Forward Lunges
  • 20 Close-Grip Pushups
  • 15 Inverted Rows
  • 15 Squats
  • 5 Chinups


Okay, so if you don’t have a swiss ball, you can substitute the leg curls with wall sits (for your hamstring) and replace jackknifes with planks (for your abs). If you are home and don’t have a chin up bar, buy a cheap doorway chin up bar.


13/1/09 carla pic david poole exercise number 1
Forward Plank

Use a chair for step ups. The length of this workout depends on your level of fitness. Can you do it in 10 mins?, sure. But if you’re wall_sitjust starting it might take a little longer, maybe 20 mins or more. As you become more accustomed to it and your fitness goes up, you can shave off some minutes.


Seriously, what else do you need. I’ll add more to this list later on. If you have something that works for you that isn’t here, please share. The idea is to get creative and not make excuses. Mix, match and modify and get in shape.


P.S. The healthy goat has no kids, but still tried running with the stroller. Confusion ensued when people asked to see the cute baby.


Wall sit picture is taken from The Hungry Runner by Katie and licensed under a CC by-SA license.

Picture of Carla by  David Poole from Ultimate Health Care Guide (www.ultimatehealthcareguide.blogspot.com) / CC BY-SA 3.0


12 thoughts on “Workouts for stay at home moms (dads)

  1. This was a very interesting read. everyone has 10 minutes to spare everyday but the real problem is motivation, self discipline and good diet. Without this people tend to go off the rails very easily. this includes me, i stopped going after a few months because of injury and now i am too lazy to do anything.

    do you have any suggestions on how to overcome this?

  2. Goat,

    Great article, I think majority of us actually can take more than 10 mins out of our day. This can be from cutting down either tv, facebook or youtube time.

    In fact, I know a lot of people who just simply wake up a little extra early to simply put in the hours at the gym. At the beginning, this may seem daunting but in the long run well worth the effort.

    Short bursts of interval and circuit training like your ’11 min’ workout can be very beneficial and will help you lose weight. Not a lot, but that will depend on your diet.

    Love your website, it’s very informative and helpful. Keep doing what you’re doing and motivate us! 🙂

  3. Hi there!

    Everyone wants to have a lean and mean body, but do not put in the effort to make it a reality. I agree with you that it can be very hard to find some time in our busy schedules, especially if you are holding a high position in the corporate world.

    I think your suggestion of doing the 10 min workout is the easiest to follow. I feel that most people would find the intensity level to be manageable and thus, will not lose motivation too quickly. Do you think 10 mins a day is enough to lose some serious weight though?

    Thanks for this informational article!

    1. To lose some serious weight, you really need to control your diet. Workouts can help, and provide other benefits…but the battle of the bulge is won and lost in a kitchen.

  4. Hey,
    The article is very helpful and informative, I personally do most of the body weight exercises and the high intensity cardio you mentioned. My mother will find your website very helpful, she always finds an excuse to skip exercise. But, 10 mins each day is very much possible.
    In addition to the home equipment you mentioned, fitness bands are also a good addition for beginners.
    Thanks for the guide. Nice work.

    1. Lol, show it to your mother and let me know what she thinks. You are right, fitness bands are also great for beginners and advanced. Just depends on how you do the exercises, plus there are various resistances.

  5. What an awesome post that you put together. I love that you give honest advice while adding a little humor to your writing. I personally have no children, so at the moment I am a total gym rat. I always think to myself what will I do when I have children? Does my passion for fitness have to go south?

    I have several friends who let themselves go after they had children. I understand being a parent is no joke. It is hard work, and the kids demand some much from you. It’s not as easy as being single with no kids. But at the same time I think there are ways to incorporate fitness in your life even if you have kids, which is clearly demonstrated in your post. Obviously parents can not work out two hours a day at the gym, but they can do small things. I think it all comes down to priorities and whether someone wants to schedule fitness into their life.

    When the time comes to pop out a precious baby, I will still find the time to workout even if it’s just five minutes a day. When the baby is taking a nap, I can be doing some squats and lunges. When the kids are old enough, I plan on making family time fitness time going for cozy walks and bike riding through the town. I love your post. Great job and keep up the healthy streak

    1. I’m glad you have a plan worked out for when the kids come. Just 5 mins a day can make a huge difference.

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