Sneaking in Fitness: Is It Effective?

You have no time. You barely find the time to shower these days let alone 45 min, 3x a week to get to the gym.

And also- you want to feel strong, you want to BE strong and you enjoy movement. But this season of life is simply proving to be a challenge for prioritizing your fitness. Keep reading, I have a few ideas that may help.

You have probably heard the saying before, something is better than nothing. And it’s true. The problem most active humans run into is that if they can’t do it the way they want, the way they planned and the way they envisioned- screw it all, you aren’t doing anything at all then. I know I have certainly been there. But if you/we lead with this mindset and, more importantly, stay there….we might not workout again until our kids are 8 or 9 years old. That’s sure as heck isn’t what I want. What about you?

Short workouts are THE THING right now, in this season. Not forever, but again – something > nothing.

Here are a few tips on how to incorporate short workouts into your day (and don’t worry, I will give you some example workouts if you keep reading):

  1. Plan out when you will do it. Will it be first thing in the morning? Will you do a quick bodyweight circuit at the park? Maybe it will be while your kid is having their breakfast or lunch. Get it in your head WHEN you will do it- even if its not while you are alone at the *best* time of day.
  2. Plan out what you will do. Whether you have 10 minutes or 40, you want to capitalize on that entire time, right? So make sure you know what you will be doing. Follow a program, write the workout in advance, but make sure you KNOW what you are doing.
  3. Incorporate the kids. This one is hard. Because you want your fitness to be your *you* time. I totally get that. But somedays, it just can’t happen that way. Run with the stroller, use your baby as a weight when doing squats, allow your toddler on your back while doing your plank, challenge them to their own circuit workout. Make fitness fun.
  4. Capitalize on time when you have help. I am willing to bet that at least 1-2 days a week, you have some help. Whether your partner is off work on the weekends or your in-laws come over for dinner, you arent always completely alone with the kids. During this time take 20 minutes and move. This can be the few times during the week when you focus JUST on you, JUST on your workout. Sure, you might want to use that time to do other things, but we need to pick and choose here…and if you want to feel good, be strong and look strong- this likely needs to be a priority.

But, are short workouts, sporadic workouts, even that effective? The simple answer: YES.

You are likely short on sleep, have a lot of stress in your life, have 87 balls that need to be juggled every day. From a physiological standpoint- you may actually benefit MORE from not doing long, intense and frequent workouts. That approach could potentially hinder any progress you make because a body under constant stress struggles to adapt. And lets face it, fitness is a stressor. Sure, it might feel like a “good” stress, but your body doesnt know the difference between good and bad stress..its all just stress.

Now- you have 15, 20 minutes…what are you to do with it.

Basics to Badass is the ideal program for when you are short on time, you want to get strong, be functional and like to look good.

Save these workouts:

3-4x through the following bodyweight circuit

10x (left lunge, right lunge, squat)*

10x Plank shoulder taps

10x /leg Marching Wall Sit

10x/ side Mountain Climber

10x Bench Dip*

10x Frog pump *

*means you can add weight if possible

Kettlebell / Dumbbell Workouts

10 minute clock, as many rounds as possible:

8 squats

8 dumbbell pass thrus

8 step up with knee lift

8 single arm dumbbell z press

HIIT workout

40s work, 20s rest of each:

Jump Squat

Push Up

Mountain Climber

Crab walk x forward and back

Jumping lunge

Bench Hop Over

Plank Jack

Skater Plyo

Alternating Dynamic Glute Bridge

Tuck Jumps

And finally, the top 3 things to remember once you have (1) convinced yourself that something is better than nothing and (2) you know what you are going to do:

  • Consistency is Key. Do your best to get into a groove and make it work for you. Show up.
  • Form matters. Don’t be in such a rush that you arent focused on your movement patters and you hurt yourself. Not sure if you are moving well? Invest in a trainer for a short period of time to learn proper movement
  • Manage your expectations. Maybe in this season your goal is to move for health and endorphins. It might not be the season to look for massive body composition changes or strength gains. Thats ok- you are laying the foundation by doing what you can.
  • Nothing is permanent. As frustrating as this season might be, it will change. You will have time again. Your kids will get older. Some days might be better than others, for now- just keep going.

Take care of you, you are the tree and the fruit (your family) can only be as happy and healthy as the branch it grows on. Sounds cliche but its true- taking care of you (mind, body, soul) IS taking care of them.

If you found this helpful and want more of it, I offer free 60 minute clarity calls. This is your chance to pick my brain, ask questions about training, nutrition, health….you need extra support- I am here to help!

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Hey I’m Gaylemarie

I am a former competitive athlete turned mom on a mission. After years of running, crossfit and having a healthy relationship with food, I had a kid and everything changed (as it often does)! Learning to embrace my changing season has been a game changer and sharing that secret sauce with YOU is my mission.

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