Christmas is over, the decorations are looking tired, toys are crammed into already jam-packed rooms and everyone’s jeans are a little tighter! I, like thousands of other mums, know that I should be at the gym or doing any number of different ways to keep fit, however, finding the time is challenging – especially with kids in tow. The simple answer would be to involve the darlings, but my children, or should I say my toddler, are not the easiest to involve in scheduled events. So the only way I will be able to get any sort of exercise, to shed the few hundred pounds I have gained during this festive session, is to find a way to include the children.
As all good parents know, every child needs a coat – even if yours is in tatters and has more holes than padding, we all will buy our children a new coat before ourselves. Before I had children I hadn’t really appreciated how many different types of coats children could have, from rain coats to Parka coats, then there is the consideration of do you bother with a hood which is highly unlikely to ever get used, and that’s without thinking about the different snowsuits for our younger baby. Once the perfect coat (or at least the cheapest one from the Next sale) has been bought I found I was suddenly aware that they both needed gloves, scarf and hat. Each year my toddler becomes more and more fickle, one day she will happily wear everything I have to give her, others it is an argument to get her to wear a jumper let alone a coat etc; usually when it is sub zero outside.
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Once they are both clothed correctly I then have to prepare myself for venturing outside. There are a number of ‘go to places’ I have, which will provide a vast area for them to run around. But how do I convince a reluctant toddler and unsettled baby that mummy needs some exercise? Bikes, scooters or trikes! Three words that are guaranteed to get my toddler to enjoy a wrapped up, wintery walk. From 10 months old, she has loved her trike and at that age it could easily be used like a pushchair as she was unable to walk at the time. However, she has of course grown and now is much more opinionated, and may or may not fancy the trike. Having additional options is really useful and a bike and scooter provides this. They are faster than her little legs can usually carry her and she can go that little bit further, resulting in that little bit more exercise for me!
It’s all very well going on long walks with children on scooters and the like, but what if you really can’t get your little darlings to don their Wellington boots and venture out to the great outdoors? You are then left with your back garden! Many of my daughter’s favourite games have been based out in the garden. As our minds look forward to longer days, warmer evenings and the hope, that now Christmas is over, spring is not too far away, finding outdoor pursuits for our youngsters could also be the excuse we need to get active. This year my New Year resolution is to go outside and run races, crawl in and out of the play house, kick the football around and generally be as active as is humanly possible playing with my daughters.
I find the challenge of losing weight at this time of year does not become less desirable as I get older, but more. With every year that passes I hope that this year will be the year that I can motivate myself passed February and hopefully taking my children into the great out doors will be the thing that actually works. All of the excuses of past years (pregnancy, work going crazy, weekends filled with significant birthdays and weddings etc), will be a thing of the past and, along with my girls, I will discover a love of the outdoors that will ensure this year is the healthiest yet!