Are you a Catholic mom who would like to find time to run while deepening your faith? Are you struggling to find find space in your schedule?
I understand how you feel. Sometimes the demands of parenthood can make it seem like there simply isn’t time for either prayer or exercise. In this post I’ve collected some ideas about how to make time to run – especially for our Advent running challenge – in the busy life of a mom. My hope is that this will be helpful whether you stay at home full time, work full time, or some combination of the two.
Remind yourself why this is important. As parents, we are asked to make many sacrifices for our children. But it is also important to take care of our own physical and spiritual health. It even sets a good example for our children about prioritizing prayer! If you remember why it is important to find time to run for yourself, you are more likely to find a way to fit it into your schedule.
Find ways to exercise when you are with your kids. One of the ideal ways to do this is with a running stroller. Take the kids for a spin at the park or around your neighborhood! A lot of babies and toddlers will love this.
If you don’t have a running stroller, you can still find time for your other workouts -like yoga and cardio- when you have the kids at home with you. Sometimes I put on a zumba video and do it in my living room while my toddler plays. She often tries to join in!
If you are a working mom, run during your lunch break or right before picking up your kids. Throw those workout clothes in a bag and run somewhere nearby!
Buddy up! Find another mom (or moms!) interested in taking on the challenge or doing some other kind of exercise program. Maybe you can meet in one spot and take turns going on runs while the other watches the little ones. You could even create a whole group of moms!
Ask for help. I know this can be hard. Some of us really struggle with asking for help outside of emergencies. But you may have somebody in your life who would be thrilled to play with the kids while you go on a quick run. Husband, parents, siblings, and friends are all worth talking to about this! To make things even easier on a friend or relative, you could drive the kids to their house and go on a quick run around the neighborhood.
Remember that you can combine all of the above methods to fit your exercise in. I plan to use a combination of lunch breaks, exercise videos at home, and time on the weekend when my husband can watch our daughter.
Think about places that will be convenient for you to run. Can you step outside your door and run after the kids are in bed? Perfect! Is there a park around the corner from your children’s school? Awesome. Take advantage of these convenient locations to fit in short runs.
Remember that the three weekly runs are key. The other exercise days are helpful for strengthening your body to run, but they are less crucial, especially if you are training for a 5k!
When you find time for your prayer and exercise routine, snap a photo and tag #CatholicWomenRun and #CatholicMomsRun on Facebook and Instagram!
Do you have other suggestions for fitting exercise into the busy life of a parent? Tell us in the comments or in our inbox. We would love to update this post with your ideas.
Are you still struggling with the best way to find time to exercise? Try posting in our Facebook group so our community can help you brainstorm!