For most parents, new term has started for their children. Whether it’s nursery, primary or secondary school, a new school-based timetable brings with it the opportunity to find some time to exercise for mum and dad. And September is a popular time for clients to book in some ‘back to school fitness’ training with Muddy Plimsolls.
Last year we suggested some ways to make time for exercise when the children went back to school. This time, to add more motivation, here’s a few more ideas for making the most of the school run to help you with your fitness goals.
During the walk to school
The more adventurous parent could make use of a jogging stroller to make the journey to reception class even quicker and healthier.
After the morning school run (or before the afternoon run)
If it’s too far to walk to school (or too wet), you can park the car up at a local park and have a training session outdoors after your drop-off. Wear your workout gear during the school run, and keep your kit (towel, water, mp3 player) in the car.
Including the baby
If your youngest is not old enough for nursery, you can always bring them along to a workout. Depending on the baby of course, you could leave them in the pram, or have them toddling around with a special toy for the occasion. Expect frequent interruptions to your exercise programme (tears, feeding etc) so focus on short interval training. Tabata training, for instance, is the practise of training hard for 20 seconds then taking 10 seconds off as rest. Perhaps the founder of this system, Professor Izumi Tabata, was training next to a toddler when he developed it.
Child in after-school practise? Train when they do
Football practise, dance class, band practise. These after-school events give a parent an opportunity to take some time to exercise in their nearest green space rather than sit and wait in the car.
Wait until after their bedtime
This one rather depends on how good you are at tucking the little ones up at night. You’ve been promising yourself they should be in bed earlier, anyway. Now’s the impetus to make that happen. Having a workout session booked for 7.30pm may be the spur to get the tea-bath-bedtime story schedule tightened up.
Older children? Let them join in
Perhaps a short run, or let them shoot hoops or kick a ball with a friend while you do a bodyweight circuit elsewhere in the park.