As a mum you are constantly on the run, dropping the older kids at school, taking care of the younger ones, making lunches and running the household. And you often put your kids’ priorities ahead of your own. Your children are your number one priority and always will be.

But what about the other important aspects of life that inevitably get thrown on the backburner? Number one in this list is your health and fitness. Of course you want to look and feel great but how do you find the time to exercise? The answer may lie in thinking like your kids and using your imagination!

Set the Scene
Let’s say it’s just after lunchtime. You have a couple of hours before you need to pick the older kids up from school. You think it’s a perfect time for a workout…but your younger ones who are at home with you want to go down to the playground. Does that mean you have to forgo your workout? Absolutely not!

Think like a kid and use your imagination!
You’re at the playground and your children are having the time of their lives swinging and mucking around on the playground equipment. But you feel guilty because you missed your workout. The answer? Well…join in!

The following are some great exercises that can be performed on a typical kids playground equipment at a local park. They burn massive calories, are fun and completely time efficient! To make it even better, get the kids involved. Not only will they enjoy it but they will nag you to come down to the park and do it again and again…now you have your own little personal trainers!

The Exercises

1. Playground circuit race: This involves getting inventive. Set up a mini course where you and your kids have to race each other in commando course fashion. Use your watch or mobile phone to time each of you to see who wins! The kids will love it and trust me you will be huffing and puffing! Note: Make sure you set up a SAFE race circuit so nobody injures themselves!

2. Step Ups: While the kids are playing, find a step that you can perform step ups on. Alternate between 1 minute of medium paced step ups and 30 seconds of fast paced step ups.

3. Move through the equipment: By actually trying to walk through the playground equipment, the rings, slides, swings and ladders you’ll find it is quite a workout to squeeze in and out of the kid sized equipment set up. Doing this will actually help to improve your flexibility and mobility. Just make sure to be safe.

4. Chin Ups: This is a more advanced exercise so don’t worry if you can’t perform them just yet. There are always monkey bars to practice chin ups on though.

5. Jogging: If you can manage to jog around the area while still supervising the kids then do so. It is a perfect opportunity to take advantage of being at the park. If you can’t jog for long then walking is a good alternative.

6. Get on the see-saw: More fun for the kids and a great thigh and butt workout for you!

7. Inventive Competitions: Think of little games you can play with the kids. Things like ‘who can hang from the bars for the longest’ and even games like hop-scotch will burn calories while keeping the kids occupied.

These are just a few exercises you can perform while at the playground with the kids. As a mother you are always busy but deep down you know that exercise and fitness need to play an important role in your life. The key is to multi-task, be inventive at take advantage of the time you have to exercise.

Making your health and fitness a priority will make you look and feel your best. You’ll be happier, more motivated and energetic. And a happy mum makes the whole family happy!