I am in my third week of the P90X Workout Program, and so far this is the most effective and structured workout I have personally experienced. But as a busy working parent, one challenge to stick with any workout program you’re doing at home is finding the time to do it daily and consistently.
One thing that’s helped me make time for my workouts is getting my 5-year old daughter active and involved. Now I’m certainly not suggesting the P90X workouts for kids at home! But finding ways to get them involved with your workout can make it easier to exercise more often and more consistently, while you expose them to better health, fitness and squeeze in some quality time together.
In the beginning, I was trying to find ways to “sneak off” to my basement to get my workouts in. Or sometimes, I would wait until my daughter went to bed, and working out later at night. But one night towards the end of my first week of P90X, my daughter found me downstairs working out. Sure enough, she started interrupting me, asking me to play with her and getting upset when I essentially was ignoring her trying to continue on with my workout video.
So I paused the video, and started to play and talk with her. I started explaining what I was doing, and right away she jumped up and said, “I can do that, watch”! And she’s mimicking some of the moves I was doing earlier. So I told her why I’m exercising and how important it is for us to exercise, and she totally understood that this is something “good” to do. So I suggested to her, “Hey, while I’m working out, you can try some of these things with me. And if you want to take a break or do something else, then just go ahead and do it, but I can’t stop because I need to finish this exercise for myself”.
I think she really, sincerely understood our conversation and (at least at first) she was very supportive! So I hit play on the video, and she basically just jumped in trying to do the exercises with me. It was great. It really struck me that this approach not only can help me continue finding time to work out, but it’s a great message to my daughter that exercise is important for staying healthy. Now she may not be processing that specific “moral”, but it’s certainly a “seed” planted that I hope grows with her in life.
So realistically, I will still have challenges with her interrupting me once in a while, wanting me to stop my workout so I can do something else with her. But as the days have gone by, we are striking a nice balance allowing me to work out “every day”! She comes down with me when I start my workout, does some of the moves with me, plays with something else most of the time but lately she has not bothered me too much. And she actually will “cheer me on and motivate” me during the more difficult exercises.
At one point, I’m struggling to do just a couple of these moves called “Diamond Pushups”. And of course, the people in the video are cranking 15-20 of them while I’m fighting to get just a few! As I’m breathing heavy, fighting my way back up, she says with the most confused and innocent tone, “C’mon get up?!”
So whether you are just starting a new workout program at home, or if you’ve already got your exercise routine and schedule figured out, involve some of your workouts for kids at home. It’s a great opportunity to set a positive example, and to talk about good health and the importance of exercise. They will always appreciate any time you spend together, and they can definitely make your sessions more fun and provide some additional support and motivation to work hard and do your best!