When Working Out Doesn’t Work Out

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In my old life, I was a work out maven. Mostly when I was single. I worked out five days a week, two hours a day. I loved it. Sure, it was probably keeping me single but I was in shape! I looked good, y’all! Fast forward to my newlywed days. I used to get up at 6am and head out to the gym. I’d work out for a hour and then come back home and get showered and get to work. I’d do this all week and sometimes even on Saturday. Knowing this, imagine how much I’m kicking myself now. I haven’t seen the inside of a gym in at least a year, I haven’t worked out at home in months and I’m always too exhausted or busy to get that workout in.work out

Here’s the thing. I do still try every now and then to make it happen. I was recently talking to a friend about this. We talked about how hard it can be to exercise when you’re at home with kids. She has three children, I have two. When I decide to work out my kids think it’s some sort of game. As soon and I start moving, they jump in to do what I’m doing. I love that part of it. I like them seeing me taking care of myself. I want that to be a normal part of our life. I’d love for exercise to be the norm in their eyes. So having them emulate what I do is like, “yes! we’re doing this!” The problem is they are 2 and almost 5 so their attention spans aren’t the greatest. They soon get boredΒ  with my half hour routine. When they get bored they get silly.

As I lie down to do my ab work, my daughter runs over and screams, “horsey, neigh!” She then tries to giddy up on my stomach. Fun. Also, while I’m on the floor, our dog runs up to my face to give me kisses. Are you getting this picture? It’s pretty much a comedy sketch. When it’s time to lift weights, my son wants in on that part. When I tell him no, he tries to convince me that he’s a big boy and shows me his “super strong muscles”.Β  Of course, all I see is him or his sister getting cracked with a weight. No bueno. Not happening kid. My friend told me she has similar issues with her babies. We both wondered, who are these moms who talk about working out with their small children. We wanted to know their secret. With us, it’s a comedy routine fit for a sitcom.

How about you? Does working out, work out with you and the kids? Tips, secrets? Share!

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80 Responses to When Working Out Doesn’t Work Out
  1. J
    August 11, 2014 | 6:25 am

    I am interesting in knowing this too. I only have one and she is 21-months. I am always so tired at the end of the day that working out is the farthest thing from my mind. I know folks say “take care of you.” My idea of that is getting some much needed rest.

    I now do a quick 2-mile run on Tuesday and Thursday mornings at work (we have a gym in the building) and then we do a 3-mile walk on Saturday as a family. But that’s all I can get and I am thankful to even have that.

  2. Betsy Mitchell
    August 11, 2014 | 8:19 am

    I don’t have any kids yet but I can only imagine the struggle when doing simple things like working out around the house!

  3. Amber Conaway
    August 11, 2014 | 8:47 am

    It really is harder to fit in those work outs when you become a mom. When my son was small my mother would take him for a couple of times a week so I could work out and once he got older and into literally everything that stopped! And now that he’s 4, as nervous as I am about M-F Pre-K I am also excited cause as soon as I drop him off at school I am hitting the gym LOL

  4. Bernetta
    August 11, 2014 | 9:22 am

    LOL!! It sounds like a comdedy skit and I see your frustration. You know I have three kids and even when I had two, I had to get it in. For me, I worked out when my kids were in bed. I am just a night time exerciser. I kiss my kids goodnight and off to the workout room or living room I go. On the occasion they do see me working, they also join in but when they get silly… I keep on going. My daughter (now 6) makes it through a full routine with me. But either, get up before they wake up, do it during their nap or when they go to bed. But it can be done.

  5. Kay Adeola
    August 11, 2014 | 9:26 am

    Lets just say I do not work out that much well ok never lol.Hubs likes to go jogging and my older 2 like to join in with him.

  6. Everyday Living with Chrys
    August 11, 2014 | 10:32 am

    I have to get up and go with the workout or it wont get done. I have to battle health problems on top of it so it can be even more of a chore if I sit too long and dont get to it.

  7. Lashawn
    August 11, 2014 | 10:53 am

    Early in the morning. I’ve started waking at a the Gid awful hour of 430 IN THE MORNING to get it in!

  8. Erica
    August 11, 2014 | 11:14 am

    My kids are older but I feel uncomfortable working out in front of them – or anyone else. So, this summer has been a little trickier to get my workouts in without an audience. I try to do them in the mornings before the kids get up when I can.

    • Carly from The Puzzled Palate
      August 13, 2014 | 10:11 am

      I hate working out in front of my kids and they are still little. My daughter sometimes joins in… and that makes it better!

  9. mellisa
    August 11, 2014 | 11:46 am

    My kids are younger so I am ok working out in front of them. In fact they like to join in.

  10. Tracey
    August 11, 2014 | 12:08 pm

    I tend to get up before work to work out. I hate it, but then it’s done for the day and I feel better about it!

  11. Jaime
    August 11, 2014 | 12:27 pm

    I’ve occasionally tried running with my son, but it doesn’t always go so well (or I have to cut the run short because that is TOUGH!) I work out during my lunch hour now, and my husband and I take turns working out on the weekends.

  12. josh
    August 11, 2014 | 12:34 pm

    Have you tried working out once the kids go to bed. I know it can be late and we all have better things to do with that time(like clean that days mess the kids made) or simply rest since it’s been a long draining day. But maybe once the kids go down you can do a quick 25 minute workout alone or with your husband. I know it’s 100% easier said then done but sometimes a quick 25 minutes a few days a week is all we need to restart or maintain our insanity. Or Switch it and try the workout in the morning Prior to kids getting up a few days a week.

  13. Debra
    August 11, 2014 | 12:57 pm

    It’s tough fitting in working out with family, job and home. I wish there were more hours in the day to get things done!

  14. Deidre
    August 11, 2014 | 2:25 pm

    Working out is tough. Especially when my favorite shows are on! Ha. Yep… I am that person!

  15. Melissa @ This Girl's Life Blog
    August 11, 2014 | 2:39 pm

    I definitely have to work out either while my daughter is at school, before school or after she goes to bed. She is the same “oohh horsey” when it comes to that.

  16. Melissa
    August 11, 2014 | 2:56 pm

    Working out with kids really can be difficult. The best thing I have found is to find ways to do it with them if at all possible.

  17. Katrina
    August 11, 2014 | 3:29 pm

    I am in the same boat, I want to get in shape so badly but my kiddos don’t think its that important lol

  18. Terry
    August 11, 2014 | 3:44 pm

    I remember those days very well. It has been many, many years… but I do remember. Things do get better. Hold onto that thought.

  19. Lindsey @ Redhead Baby Mama
    August 11, 2014 | 3:46 pm

    Working out at home does NOT work for me… I have to have Red strapped into a jogger, or be at the gym by myself. And doing anything at home doesn’t motivate me.

  20. Lindsay
    August 11, 2014 | 3:59 pm

    Hahaha!! I don’t have any kids but when I do some stretches or yoga at home my dog will not leave me alone! I gave up on working out at home because it just never happens. Maybe have them help “coach you” along the way? Have them be involved without them working out themselves πŸ™‚

  21. Michelle
    August 11, 2014 | 4:32 pm

    Every time I try to do yoga at home, my dog starts licking my face and my cats climb all over me. Also no bueno!

  22. Jessica
    August 11, 2014 | 4:38 pm

    As adorable as it sounds, I can see it being a bit frustrating when you want to work out! I agree with Josh about the morning/nighttime workout. If you work out late at night, you may feel tired enough to get a good rest and if you choose to do it in the morning, it may energize you!

  23. Jamie @ Makeuplifelove
    August 11, 2014 | 5:24 pm

    I totally need to get back into working out BIG TIME. I used to be so good at it, then life got in the way and a full time job in Corporate America. You totally have me ready to make it work. Get back to the gym and no more excuses. Great post!!

  24. Jenna @ A Savory Feast
    August 11, 2014 | 5:26 pm

    The little girl I nanny does the exact same thing when I try to work out! It can be such a challenge to work out with kids.

  25. Debbie Denny
    August 11, 2014 | 5:30 pm

    I like both early and late exercising. Pretty much get it in when I can.

  26. Kayla
    August 11, 2014 | 5:45 pm

    I keep telling myself that when all my kids are in school, THAT is when it will be my time to get back to working out regularly. I just canNOT figure out the logistics with little kids at home! Sigh. Someday…

  27. Janell Poulette
    August 11, 2014 | 6:08 pm

    I have to find different ways to work out now with kids. We have a treadmill and I will do some workout DVD’s.

  28. Jessica (Savory Experiments)
    August 11, 2014 | 6:18 pm

    I struggle to get in a good burn too. I don’t have children, but spread myself thin. I try walking with neighbors after dinner.

  29. Rosey
    August 11, 2014 | 6:28 pm

    Mm hmm, I can relate. I turn on the treadmill and my six year old is begging to get on with me. I have to get up way before he does, or the workout isn’t going to happen.

  30. Kecia
    August 11, 2014 | 7:23 pm

    Working out has gotten MUCH more difficult with kids. My 4 year old wants to get rid beside me to workout with the people on TV — so close that I can’t really move, and he gets mad when I ask him to give me space.

  31. veronica
    August 11, 2014 | 8:09 pm

    My kids are a bit older now so they don’t affect my working out that much. I am the one who stands in my own way half the time. Lol

  32. Emily
    August 11, 2014 | 8:34 pm

    I go in spurts. I get motivated and work out for a few months and then I get lazy. Here’s to getting motivated again!

  33. Felicia
    August 11, 2014 | 9:03 pm

    It is so hard. I have to exercise when everyone goes to bed which leaves my options limited.

  34. Carly Anderson
    August 11, 2014 | 9:15 pm

    The only kind of working out I can do when my daughter is around is zumba or any kind of dance exercise. And that’s only because she wants to join in.

  35. Beth@FrugalFroggie
    August 11, 2014 | 10:22 pm

    I just haven’t had time to exercise. But I hope sometime to get exercising back into my routine.

  36. Anne @MidlifeBlvd
    August 12, 2014 | 5:43 am

    I hate to work out. I know I need to, so I’ve started walking.

  37. Jeanine @ sixtimemommy.com
    August 12, 2014 | 5:59 am

    I have 6 kids and have been failing with working out for months. I get into a groove then something always comes up. Hoping once school starts up again I can regroup and refocus!

  38. Marybeth Hamilton
    August 12, 2014 | 7:24 am

    So funny! But I think doing anything for yourself that requires more than 3 or four minutes is difficult when you’re a mom.

  39. Kendra
    August 12, 2014 | 8:10 am

    My friends and I have started walking 4 miles. It’s working now that my kids are in school. During the summer, forget it. My issues are pretty similar to yours.

  40. Alyssa
    August 12, 2014 | 9:47 am

    Haha! Kids are the funniest when it comes to working out at home. I can picture it now, they just think its all a game. I think walking groups are super fun!

  41. Joelle
    August 12, 2014 | 10:11 am

    Oh my goodness, I can’t even imagine. I used to make it to the gym before I got married too, but my last day was the week after my wedding πŸ˜‰ good like finding something that works my dear!

  42. Jemma @ Celery and Cupcakes
    August 12, 2014 | 10:20 am

    I have all this to come. It’s going to be interesting juggling my own stuff and motherhood too.

  43. Carly from The Puzzled Palate
    August 12, 2014 | 10:50 am

    I am really bad about making the kids my excuse. I really should use them as my motivation!

  44. Theresa
    August 12, 2014 | 11:46 am

    Thankfully, my gym has a kids watch, so I can work out for up to 2 hours per day while I know the kids are in good hands.

  45. Rochelle
    August 12, 2014 | 12:06 pm

    I have 5 kids and believe me, I get what you’re going through. If I let my 2.5 year old around me while I work out she’s trying to do lunges underneath my legs or climb on my back like I’m a horse too. It’s cute but frustrating. πŸ™‚ What I’ve done – and maybe a lot of moms wouldn’t agree with my method – is I send my kiddos upstairs. They go to their play room and play. They are not to come downstairs unless there’s an emergency until I’m done. No fighting. If they fight or whatever else they could do (smear toothpaste all over the bathroom) they get consequences. If they don’t want to be upstairs then they have to stay on the couch. They’ve seen me do this for years so they’re pretty used to it. I try to keep the workouts in the 30 minute range for my 2 year old and my baby. I always have a bottle at the ready for my baby; it seems he always decides he’s hungry right when I’m in the middle of a workout. Sometimes it takes 30 minutes for me to get everything ready to workout. Get the kids a snack before I send them upstairs, get my stuff out, get the baby’s stuff ready. I keep thinking to try to workout early morning, but that’s never going to happen!! I need sleep!

  46. Virginia @thatbaldchick
    August 12, 2014 | 12:21 pm

    My gym has childcare, which is awesome. As long as my kids behave in there, I can workout for two hours and know my kids are cared for. Occasionally my workout is interrupted, like if the baby needs a diaper or one of them misbehaves, but so far it’s been wonderful.

  47. Amanda
    August 12, 2014 | 1:32 pm

    I’ve been lucky enough to find a gym with a great daycare. Now I just need to keep my motivation up!

  48. brita
    August 12, 2014 | 1:39 pm

    I don’t even have kids yet and I find it increasingly difficult to work out. My biggest problem is that I find it SO hard to wake up early and that’s pretty much the only time I have to get an extra workout in. I’d love to hear how you managed to wake up early regularly

  49. Katie
    August 12, 2014 | 1:54 pm

    This sounds brilliant. I have a boyfriend that does all of the above to me while I’m trying to exercise. To be fair to him, he is trying to help me get fit but it’s not going brilliantly well!

    Katie <3

  50. Christie
    August 12, 2014 | 2:23 pm

    Hoping to get back into the groove when school starts. Been too busy this summer!

  51. Dawn McAlexander
    August 12, 2014 | 3:19 pm

    My daughter is a late teen and we have been talking about doing yoga or pilates together. So, hopefully that will pan out soon.

  52. Toni
    August 12, 2014 | 4:28 pm

    I have not had time this summer at all. I can’t wait for school to start back so I can get back to the gym!

  53. Leanna Ranieri
    August 12, 2014 | 5:11 pm

    This happens to me on the daily and I am not even a mom! I always try to work out and it just never WORKS OUT!

  54. Kendall
    August 12, 2014 | 5:41 pm

    My house is the same way – when I try – I get climbed on. It’s just how it goes, lol.

  55. Ann Bacciaglia
    August 12, 2014 | 6:29 pm

    I would love to get into a fitness routine. My kids are teenagers now i think its time for me πŸ™‚ I just have to find some motivation lol

  56. Rachael
    August 12, 2014 | 6:46 pm

    When my grandkids visit, they workout with me. They love it! And I love setting the good example with them.

  57. Amy Desrosiers
    August 12, 2014 | 6:58 pm

    When my husband gets home for work, I go for a power walk with my neighbor. Sometimes mommy just needs time to clear her head.

  58. April @ Everyday Fitness and Nutrition
    August 12, 2014 | 7:04 pm

    My kids are older now so I don’t have to manage my time with them. I still find it necessary to get up early to get a workout in before starting my day.

  59. Cyndi @ MrsWrightWrites
    August 12, 2014 | 7:41 pm

    Lol, working out at home is like that for me at times. I choose to either go to the gym or work out early in the morning (5:00am) before my house wakes. Once they’re up…. all hope is lost.

  60. Krystal
    August 12, 2014 | 8:17 pm

    I can only work out when my son is asleep…if then! It’s usually too early or too late. I gotta find the inspiration!

  61. Brett
    August 12, 2014 | 9:17 pm

    It can definitely be hard to find time to workout. Unfortunately, sometimes I have to skip a day or two.

  62. fancygrlnancy (Nancy Partin)
    August 12, 2014 | 9:56 pm

    I used to love going to the gym and working before kids. But since kids I just don’t have the time or energy.

  63. Mary O'Malley
    August 12, 2014 | 10:16 pm

    Just remember that your working out and making the time to do it will show them how important it is. Plus, you want to be around a long time for them, and vice versa. Hang in there and don’t give up. :]

  64. Lissa Cole
    August 12, 2014 | 11:11 pm

    At least you’re trying. I don’t even have an excuse… I’m just lazy half the time. I am planning on starting pole fitness so hopefully it is fun enough that I don’t remember I’m working out.

  65. Sarah Beth
    August 13, 2014 | 6:36 am

    Hey, at least you are trying. That is better than some of us πŸ˜‰

  66. Beth@ Through the Eyes of the Mrs.
    August 13, 2014 | 7:52 am

    It’s a continuous struggle. I too used to work out like it was my job but since having kids I’ve gained weight lost my energy and motivation and can’t seem to snap out of it.

  67. Rebekah
    August 13, 2014 | 9:50 am

    My son does the same thing and will try to pick up the weights to show me how strong he is, so I’ve had to start hiding them when I’m not actively using them. I try to work out after the kids go to bed because it’s also my ‘me’ time and I just can’t concentrate or enjoy it while they need me. It’s hard though.

  68. alice
    August 13, 2014 | 2:59 pm

    I really struggle too – and I don’t even have children! I am SO busy I’m just so tired in the evenings and now a morning songbird (ever) so just making myself a juice or breakfast in the morning leads to me giving myself a good pat on the back in congratulations. I used to work out loads! I’ve found that eating really well gives me more energy and means I am more likely to bite the bullet and go for it. Forcing myself out for a jog (even though I actually hate running) or going to a class means you have no one to distract you πŸ™‚

  69. Natalie
    August 13, 2014 | 6:23 pm

    It is so hard to workout at home with kids! I’m trying to do it more by taking barre classes, and I’m doing twice a week. (They have childcare!)

  70. Jessica Doll
    August 13, 2014 | 10:37 pm

    My 2 year old totally does the horsey thing to me. I workout at their bed time, my husband does bedtime most nights so I can hit the treadmill.

  71. Jordan
    August 13, 2014 | 11:36 pm

    What I can take from this is that I’ll cherish my peace while I have it. And do nothing but cherish the one once more of it gets here πŸ˜€

  72. Raewyn
    August 13, 2014 | 11:59 pm

    I don’t even have kids yet and I suck at working out!!

  73. Liz Mays
    August 14, 2014 | 11:04 am

    I remember my son crawling or toddling over to me when I tried to do sit-ups or something and he’d be giggling and smiling at me while trying to climb atop me for a ride. I would always just give up and play. Babies are more fun than exercise. lol

  74. Lisa Heath
    August 14, 2014 | 11:33 am

    I try working out, but time management doesn’t work well for me. Between the blog, my full time job, being a single mom… I just haven’t found a time for it

  75. Ashley Nicholas
    August 14, 2014 | 12:27 pm

    I don’t have kids yet, but I still have problems working out! I remember when my brother was very young, my mom would put him in the gym’s daycare program or take him on a walk in a stroller!

  76. Katy Rawson
    August 14, 2014 | 4:19 pm

    Working out? What’s that? I haven’t done that since my twins were born. They’re about to turn two. I just cannot seem to work in into my day. So I admire you for trying.

  77. YUMMommy
    August 15, 2014 | 11:18 pm

    I like to squeeze my workouts in after the kids have gone to bed. As soon as the last kid closer their eyes, I’m off to living room to get it in high gear. You could also try incorporating the kids in your workouts by asking them to join along.

  78. Jess
    August 19, 2014 | 12:26 am

    I don’t have children and even then it’s hard to workout and stay motivated. Perhaps some workout DVD’s you can quietly do while your kids sleep? Or YouTube videos!

  79. […] Friday, I’m feeling all kinds of determined. I have talked about my fitness woes before. You all were full of suggestions and support! Love that! Things are slowly turning around for me […]

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