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Improve Your Fitness - No More Excuses!

Improve Your Fitness - No More Excuses!
What excuses are preventing you from reaching your health and fitness goals?

Most mums will cite lack of time, lack of resources, know-how or equipment, or just trying to juggle too many things and always finding yourself bottom of your to-do list. All these perfectly valid reasons (or excuses, depending on your viewpoint!) are typical of the pressures and multiple demands ALL mums face. Here are a few strategies, both practical and emotional, that might help you get past them!

EXCUSE No.1: 'I don't have time!'
This one will resonate with all women. We have no time, and we certainly have no 'spare' time. We find it very hard to say no, consequently taking on too much and then feeling like we've failed when we occasionally fall short. Taking care of our own well-being, health and fitness invariably comes bottom of the list, if it's on the list at all.

THE SOLUTION: Make Time. Here's How.
A spare hour doesn't exist, indeed a 'spare' 10 minutes doesn't exist. If you wait for it to exercise, the exercise is NEVER GOING TO HAPPEN! You either make the time, or the time is gone. But first you have to believe you're worth it. Sorry but at the risk of sounding like a shampoo ad, this is the most important part of all. If you don't really believe that spending a few extra minutes to feed yourself decent, fresh, real food, or taking 15-20 minutes to work out, or 10 minutes before bed or in the morning to do some yoga or pelvic floor exercises is actually WORTH it, well then you're not going to do it.

woman exercising with baby
Either you want to change the way you feel about your body, and you think that's more worthy of half an hour of your time than a reality show, or you don't. So find something (anything) in your day that takes around 15 minutes and that isn't actually vital - and replace it with something that takes care of your body and soul. If you don't TAKE that time, no one is going to give it to you.

Mums are rather good at this - multi tasking is what we do! So read this article about not wasting your time exercising, or try this workout or this workout and make sure your workouts WORK. Nothing is more demoralising than a lack of results, so make sure you are working out in the most efficient, effective way possible. You don't need a gym to work out, you simply need the floor space in your front room. Let life and family go on around you - they might even join in!

EXCUSE No. 2: 'I can't afford healthy food / don't know how to cook it / haven't got time to eat well'
You don't have to be a domestic goddess, but healthier food for your family revolves around one very simple rule: eat real food.

THE SOLUTION: Keep it simple. Really simple.
To put it bluntly... Processed foods and take-aways, refined sugar and foods which bear no resemblance to something that relatively recently grew, swam or ran, are full of crap and will make you (and your family) fat, whilst sapping your energy. Real food really needn't be complicated, in fact by definition its very simple - it's ready to eat and it's good for you. Often it doesn't even need to be cooked! MuTu Food is full of ideas of how to make extremely simple food taste good. It tells you what to buy, what to avoid and clears up the confusion round labels, sugars, fats and more. Need inspiration? Every famous chef (and often their wives'!) has written easy to follow cook books. Simple family food, made of real food, is cheap, nutritious and better for your whole family.

I know many mums follow all the healthy rules for their kids but neglect their own diet (wine and crisps as soon as the kids have gone to bed anyone?). Far be it from me to deny a frazzled mother her glass of Pinot of an evening, but do this more than 1 or 2 times a week, and that's enough calories to completely negate your workouts. You won't see the results and you'll lose your motivation. Don't make it hard on yourself!

The common thread here is a lack of conviction that taking care of YOU is time well spent. When mum is healthy and happy - her family is healthy and happy. So even if you still struggle to think you're worth it... use that logic and do it (indirectly!) for them!

Wendy Powell
December 2011
Wendy Powell founded No More Excuses in 2002, & has extensive qualifications & experience in specialist exercise prescription for pregnant & postnatal women. She launched the unique MuTu System helping mums everywhere to lose their baby weight. The MuTu System is available as a downloadable online coaching programme. Wendy has worked with hundreds of pregnant & new mums, & has 2 children of her own. The MuTu System is a programme written for mums, by a mum who's done it! She runs Masterclasses for mums & private personal training in London, & also coordinates a team of highly qualified, specialist pre/postnatal trainers in London. Her Specialties are: Postnatal (and postpartum) exercises & nutritional advice. Technical expertise & extensive experience of putting mums' tummies back together again (with specific knowledge of Diastasis Recti), however long ago you had your babies!

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