How to Exercise with Babies
Yoga expert Kristin McGee shares her balancing act.
*We’ve partnered with Skip Hop to share some mama fitspiration.
Babies sure are cute, but they can wreak havoc on your fitness routine. Even the fittest moms would admit that working out sometimes takes a back seat to the tiny growing human in their lives. That doesn’t mean you have to quit working out when you become a mom. But it does mean you have to evolve what fitness looks like. And maybe even involve your baby.
Since being an active mom is the best way to model active behavior for your baby, we’ve partnered with Skip Hop to share some mama “fitspiration.” Below, NYC yoga & pilates expert Kristin McGee shows off her moves while her 11-month-old twins Robert and William show off their moves in the new Skip Hop Explore & More Jumpscape Foldaway Jumper.
What’s your fitness routine been like since having the twins?
My fitness routine has definitely changed since the twins were born! I have much more limited time, so I make sure to incorporate them in to my workouts, or get creative and make my workout around whatever toys they’re playing with or whatever we’re all doing together. I also have to schedule a quick workout for myself a few times a week. If I don’t add it to my schedule and just do it, it’s impossible to make it happen.
Why is it so important to you to keep up a fitness routine, both physically and emotionally?
I am a much better mother and all around person when I take care of myself. Yoga, pilates and working out feed my body, mind and spirit. I have more energy and a much better attitude. Even if I get just 5-10 minutes of chair yoga in, I feel 100% better.
What are some of the things you do on your own, and some you do together with the babies?
I love to do a yoga flow or my own pilates workout when I’m on my own. If the babies are with me, I do more of a mommy and me style of yoga. I might put the babies on my mat or pick one up in in a Warrior 1, for instance. When it comes to pilates, I can hold them during my workout or have one of them on my belly or thighs when I do ab work or bridges. There’s nothing better than doing strength moves while holding them! There’s also plenty you can do with babies outdoors, from just playing in the park to doing walking lunges when the babies are in the stroller.
Why do you think it’s so important to model a healthy lifestyle for them, even at such a young age?
I think it’s extremely important for all of my boys to see how exercise does so much for them. When they move with me, it’s instilling and active lifestyle in them from a very young age. My 4-year-old son Timothy is so proud to show me his yoga poses or race me to school. My twins light up when I roll out my yoga mat. Children and babies are naturally active and love to move so it’s great to make sure they keep that with them for the rest of their life.
How does the winter weather affect your fitness routine with the babies?
It’s harder to go run outside and bring balls to the playground. But we have indoor gyms and can do indoor dance parties and yoga. I also have big bunting bags for the stroller so we get outside no matter how cold it is.
How does the right baby gear make all the difference as an active mama?
The right baby gear can make a huge difference! It’s great to have some place to put the kids, like Skip Hop’s Explore & More Jumpscape Foldaway Jumper, so they can entertain themselves when I do my own quick workout.
If there’s one thing you MUST make time for each week for your selfcare, what is it?
YOGA and meditation, for sure.
What would you tell a new mom who is trying to get active when she’s got a new baby at home? what’s your best advice?
Do your workout or exercise before you clean the house! I know it’s so tempting to put your baby down and start doing work….but you will feel so much better if you do your work out first. Don’t check email, don’t do the dishes nothing…just move your body! Or if you are going to clean, incorporate workout moves while you do it.
Another tip? Enlist as much help as you can. Tell your husband you have a dance class or running date with a friend every Saturday am and let him be with the baby. Find a place or center or gym that has a good reliable kids care that you can take your baby to when you do your yoga or Pilates class.
And of course, remember to be good to yourself and pamper yourself. Exercise gives you feel good endorphins to do what you need to do!
Photography by Stylish & Hip Kids for Well Rounded.
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