ten minutes a day
it doesn't seem that long right?
as a mom (read: a professional multi-tasker), i can accomplish a whole lotta things in ten minutes flat. so why is it SO hard for me to fit in or even justify ten minutes a day for myself?!
this whole concept of ten minutes came to me one morning when i half heartedly hit the play button on a ten minute upper body strength workout. i had just completed a five minute warm up and knew that i'd also do a quick cool down, so really the workout was more like twenty minutes all together, and yet, i was still beating myself up about it! i was still telling myself that it wasn't enough. i was buying into the deceit that "if i can't work out for at least 45 minutes, it's not even worth it."
but as i began the movements, i felt incredible, just like i always do when i take the time to move my body. and somewhere along the way, the instructor muttered the words, "this workout is short and sweet, but ten minutes is better than no minutes." and i'm pretty sure that phrase will now stick with me forever.
here’s the thing… ever since i became a mom, i've struggled with fitting in exercise. i'm sure for some moms it's easy, but i'm also sure for most moms, it's definitely not easy. even for someone like myself who LOVES the sweat-dripping, endorphin-flying, heartbeat-racing energy that comes from a killer workout, it's still a daily struggle to just fit it in.
the concept of self care is booming in today’s society. there’s approximately 452 GIF’s about self care all over the internet and it’s become something that women are striving to make apart of their daily or weekly routine. i personally have always felt very in tune with my body, mind, and soul, which is why this concept of self care has always come pretty naturally to me. even after becoming a mom, i’ve continued to make it a priority to plug in some alone time every week — this is super important to my well-being and i’m thankful i have a supportive husband who understands this.
but again, this doesn’t mean it’s always easy. enter: the ten minutes a day idea. what if instead of complaining about how i never have the time or energy or motivation to workout, i simply commit to ten minutes a day?
so, that’s exactly what i’ve been doing. over the past few weeks, i’ve actually stuck with the ten minutes a day concept. no, i still don’t exercise every.single.day, but i’ve become a lot more consistent than i have been over the past year! right now, i’m averaging five times a week, and i’m super happy about this positive step in the right direction!
MY CURRENT REGIMEN:
+ a ten minute workout at least four times during the work week, no matter what. but actually, most days it ends up being between 15-20 minutes total with a warm up/cool down. if i have more energy/time, then i choose a routine a bit longer, but ultimately, this time frame is my new normal.
+ i use Fitness Blender workouts and have been for years! these are my absolute favorite FREE workout videos. i like that they actually do the moves with you and show their own struggle. they have all types of workouts and time lengths, so if i do have more time, their 30 minute HIIT videos are my favorite! (Fitness Blender also offers a free calendar where you can map out your workouts in advance, so i set aside a few minutes once a week to do this and it has really helped me to stick to them!)
+ if the weather is decent on the weekends, i always try to get in a really good long walk with Wilder too. these walks are uphill while pushing a stroller, so they’re intense and i love it!
+ one last thing i’ve been implementing recently is getting in a solo run once a week. there are a few reasons it’s taken me nearly two years to run by myself again: 1) i hate being a way from my kiddo since i’m already away from him for 30+ hours a week, 2) i absolutely LOVE being outside with him and showing him all the beautiful things there are to discover in nature, aaand 3) i believe that incorporating your children INTO to your workouts will help them to develop a love for exercise and being active. my parents 100% did this for us kids and i can’t thank them enough for it. HOWEVER, now that my little man is a bit older and takes naps like a champ, once a week, when my husband is home, i sneak away for some ME time. because truth is: i LOVE running & i’ve missed how liberating it feels to NOT push a 30lb stroller ;)
in conclusion —
i’m really working on no longer believing the lie that a ten minute workout isn't enough. this season of life is equally hard and beautiful. i may only have one child, but Parenthood is still a heavy load to carry no matter the number of heads at your table. and we definitely want more children in the future, so i know it’s only going to get harder. implementing this new system of consistency now is super important to me and i’m so grateful i’ve found something that works for me. at least right now. i definitely know that with each new phase of Motherhood, comes a new learning curve, so i’m not saying i’ve figured out the be-all end-all, but i’ve finally found a rhythm that makes me feel really good, so i’m celebrating that!
i hope whoever is reading this is able to take something from it. and if you also struggle to fit in time for yourself in this busy phase of chasing babies, i hope this essay at least encourages you to try!
here’s to making ourselves a priority, Mama’s!