Parenting comes with overwhelming responsibility and few pats on the back. Every day, we moms make sure that our kids are well-rested, fed, and getting the exercise they need. But we don't always take care of ourselves in the same way. Sometimes our lack of self-care means we have less joy and patience for our families. Sometimes we need to take our own advice on food, rest and exercise. We also want to really model that we exercise so our kids and teens will make it a priority.
Beyond its obvious health benefits, exercise gives us a tremendous psychological boost. As a parent to 2 teens, that's really important for me to remember. When the eye rolls start, I try to breathe and if that doesn't work--off I go to let of some steam! It really doesn’t matter what exercise you choose, but it does matter that you stick with it. So find your favorite way of working out, whether it’s a brisk walk in the park with your baby or a good run with your dog.
Here are 10 benefits of exercise that just might make you feel like an even better mom.
I’m more productive when I exercise. I get more done, quicker. Why? Studies prove that exercise increases concentration, enables us to soak in more information, work more efficiently, and be more productive. #ProductiveMom
Reduces my stress levels. I don’t know about you, but when I am stressed I can whip myself into a frenzy and get too busy to exercise. That’s when i need it the most. Virtually any form of exercise, from a walk to aerobics or yoga, can act as a stress reliever. It’s like meditation in motion—when I’m done I’ve often forgotten the day’s irritations because I’ve been focused on a single task—making it through the exercise. After that I am energized and I can remain calmer. #CalmMom
Helps manage my autoimmune diseases. While it is counterintuitive, exercise can help control pain that’s associated with various conditions, including chronic low back pain, fibromyalgia and lupus. And if you don’t have any issues–exercise reduces the risk of chronic disease.#HealthyMom
Good for bone density. As people age, they tend to lose muscle mass and function, which can lead to injuries and disabilities. Physical activity helps you build muscles and strong bones and may also help prevent osteoporosis. I’m short, I don’t need to be hunched over as well. #TallMom
It’s a memory booster. Exercise causes the hippocampus, a part of the brain that’s vital for memory and learning, to grow in size. It improves brain function and protects memory and thinking skills—and Lord knows, I need that! #SmartMom
Gives me a feeling of achievement. Sticking with something and seeing improvements in strength or competence makes me more confident. That confidence can flow into all other parts of your life which is a pretty good feeling. #ConfidentMom
Strengthens bond with your partner . Going for hikes, walking the dog or going kayaking opens up communication, gives you something productive to talk about, and creates an even stronger bond. And that can only lead to good things! #HappilyeverafterMom
Balances moods. I’m relatively even keeled and not moody. But I can’t say that for everyone in my family. And while it’s nice to know that science has proven that exercise balances moods, it’s even better when you see it at work in yourself or your family. It reduces irritability, decreases anxiety and raises the happiness factor. Basically it’s like free therapy! #NiceMom
Helps me sleep better. Sleep is a good thing. Having healthy and regular exercising patterns helps your biological clock set itself, and leads to ease in falling asleep and sleeping through the night better. We live in a busy world, and most of us can use as much sleep as we can get. #BrighteyedMom
Makes me feel GREAT. My endorphins kick in and I am a happy mamma. Happy mamma leads to happy baby which leads to happy family. #HappyMom
Regular exercise can increase self-confidence, relax you, and lower the symptoms of mild depression and anxiety. It can also improve your sleep which we moms all need. All of these exercise benefits can ease your stress levels and give you a sense of control over your body and your life. And what Mom doesn’t want that?