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Share your top tips on how to fit exercise into busy everyday life with Fitbit and win a Fitbit flex - NOW CLOSED

(123 Posts)
TheOtherHelenMumsnet (MNHQ) Tue 28-May-13 12:21:34

Fitbit have asked us to find out how and when Mumsnetters fit exercise into their everyday routine. Here is some more info from Fitbit: "Fitbit is the leader in activity trackers and is dedicated to helping people lead healthier, more active lives. Fitbit takes a common sense approach to fitness. We believe that the key is to make it easier for consumers to be more active, eat smarter, and get enough sleep - in short, that small changes to your daily routine can add up to big results. To that end, we aim to create innovative, inspiring products and online services that harness the power of new technologies to make people more aware of their everyday activities and motivate them to do more."

We're talking about everyday things you do to be more active - do you have any top tips or advice to share? It could be a time-saving measure which means you free up more time for exercise, or it could be a way that you've found of exercising while doing something else perhaps?!

Everyone who shares their advice or top tip on this thread will be entered into a prize draw to win a Fitbit Flex - a wireless activity tracker worn on the wrist which measures steps, distance, calories burned and also sleep (RRP £79.99).

Please note that any comments posted on this thread may appear in an email MN will be sending out, and potentially elsewhere.

Thanks and good luck with the prize draw

glorious Tue 28-May-13 16:48:05

Cycle to work when not on mat leave (about 9 miles in London, takes the same time as the train including getting changed). At the moment anything I can do with DD, so walking with the sling or puschair, especially with the food shopping. Plus buggyfit (like bootcamp with pushchairs) and mother and baby pilates. Yoga dvd during naps. Hoping I'll feel strong enough to use a running pushchair when DD is 6 months. She's 4 now and I don't think I could.

MyDaydream Tue 28-May-13 17:04:04

I tend to walk places if I can get there in less than 30 minutes rather than rely on busses. If I do go somewhere further afield the walk to the bus stop we usually use is 20 minutes away and if we miss the bus or are very early we'll use that time walking to the next stop, then the next stop until the next bus is due. We'd have been hanging around at a stop anyway so might as well get a little bit of exercise in.
When we're both back at work we'll relay to the gym, one of us doing the early shift and preparing dinner, then the other will go after dinner while the first gym goer does bedtime routines. I do classes so I have to be at the gym for X time or miss out which motivates me a lot more than if I didn't do classes and just told myself "at some point today I'll have to get to the gym". If I do that I don't tend to go.

MyDaydream Tue 28-May-13 17:04:50

*one of us doing the early shift while the other prepares dinner, then switching.

hermancakedestroyer Tue 28-May-13 18:01:21

Walking wherever possible and jogging in the evening are good, free, ways to fit fitness into busy schedules. I've got the children involved in jogging too and recently they completed a 3k run whilst I did a 10k run (it nearly killed me but I got a great sence of achievement!)
Also, taking the stairs instead of the lift when out shopping and wearing a pedometer really does encourage you to walk more.
Also doing a bit of Wii dance at home is good to fit in when you have a spare minute (ha ha)

Walk everywhere that I can, swim at lunchtimes and pelvic floor exercise reminders using an Iphone app are my best time saving exercise tips. I do like measuring and timing, I use Runkeeper on my phone for runs and walks, also sometimes use Swimfit tags at the local swimming pool, really does motivate me.

Beechview Tue 28-May-13 18:17:51

I try to walk as much as I can. If I need milk and a few bits, I'll walk to a supermarket 1/2 an hr away instead of driving.

I know it sounds like a cliché but playing with the kids can be very active. We often run around the garden playing catch, play tennis and football in the local park, take kites out on a windy day or just go for a walk in the woods. When dd is old enough to sit, I'm planning on getting a seat for her on a bike then going for bike rides with the rest of the family. Of course, its easier when the weather is good but we will still go for a walk in the rain.

Babycarmen Tue 28-May-13 18:50:51

Walk!! Seriously!
Stop taking the car/bus on the little runs that you really don't need to such as a run to the local shop or school runs. Yes the weather might be great but so what! It makes a massive difference to your physical AND mental well being.

bangersmashandbeans Tue 28-May-13 19:10:38

I have a workout DVD (jillian Michaels ripped in 30) which does a sort of circuit type of exercise with 3 mins strength 2 mins cardio 1 min abs and this is done 3 times. Takes no time at all so I do it when my baby has his short morning nap and if my 3 yr old isn't at nursery then she does it with me!

whosiwhatsit Tue 28-May-13 19:25:13

I had a fitbit, did my 10,000 steps each day for months, and ended up with really bad plantar fasciitis. That was last summer and despite all the best care my podiatrist could provide, orthotics, etc i still can't walk as much as I used to and still get a lot of pain in my feet. So yes fitness is great of course, just be careful and don't overdo it just for the sake of that magic 10,000 number.

CrackedNipplesSuchFun Tue 28-May-13 20:06:01

I find that due to not being a driver and having no one on hand to run me about, as it were, I walk everywhere and with a 2 year old DS we walk lots. I am sure this helps keep me fit. That aside, I find doing stomach crunches whist my DS 'helps' by pulling my arms, to Row, Row, Row Your Boat.. Works a charm!

racingheart Tue 28-May-13 20:10:39

northernlassthree that is really impressive. Wow.

When DC were pre-school the weight melted away as I walked everywhere - at least 5 miles a day, pushing a buggy usually loaded with shopping as well as DC.

When they started school it was an hour round trip twice a day. But then school opened up a short cut through fields and the weight piled on. So I did Jillian Michaels 30 day shred and as they have got older we now do C25K together as well as lots of physical stuff as a family - hikes, mountain climbs, long bike rides etc.

But the only thing that really works is a shift in attitude. I was very overweight and felt too tired at night to exercise. But I started dance class, then added boot camp and power yoga as well as c25K. Now it's become a real pleasure to exercise so I find I walk to visit nearby clients, or take the stairs when visiting people on 7th floor.

nextphase Tue 28-May-13 20:18:06

Nursery is under a mile from home.
I try to leave work early enough once a week to drive home, pick up the pushchair, and fast walk to nursery. Then we all walk home. The kids love it!
Also, every little helps - don't drive to the post box, get of your bum, and walk there.

usuallydormant Tue 28-May-13 20:45:40

At work we organised for a yoga & pilates teacher to do lunchtime sessions. We just push the chairs and tables in a meeting room against the wall. Also, use lunch breaks to go for a run / power walk with work friends. Cycle to work. Get up a bit earlier and do a quick yoga session using

I find if I leave it till the end of the day I'm too knackered. If I can find an easy way to fit it into the day there's a much better chance it will get done - travelling to a class just doesn't work for me.

shellandkai Tue 28-May-13 20:47:22

After I had ds I was a size 16-18 for a year (usually a size 8) after his 1st birthday I started doing more instead of catching the town I walked the 45 minutes there and dancing around the frontroom with him helped get me fit, also as he got older it was running around trying to stop him doing something i lost all the weight and got down to a size 8 again although it took me a year. I'm not pregnant with my second and needless to say this time I'm ignoring the rule eat for 2 and letting myself have treats but if I feel like I've had too much bad cravings I resort to replacing sweets with celery sticks (yummy) and still am trying to walk and dance as much as possible although it's starting to get harder lolgrin

Forgetfulmog Tue 28-May-13 23:50:15

I don't drive & hate buses so walk everywhere. I generally do at least an hrs walk every day, usually uphill (I live in a very hilly area) & always pushing a buggy. This also has the added benefit of getting dd to sleep.

I put dd to sleep by putting her in the sling & then bouncing on a gym ball. I also carry her around the house in the sling, thus burning off a few extra calories.

Does bf count as exercise too? grin

EMUZ Wed 29-May-13 03:12:08

Multi tasking! I do squats and lunges while cleaning teeth or kettle is boiling. Same when watching tv but I add in plank or press ups
When I do structured exercise I interval train to manage time better and do super sets. So I will do say chest press, then do hamstring curls so you are resting one part while the other works. Intervals means you can get your cardio done and more efficient fat burning
Basically every little counts, even star jumps or burpees in tv adverts

Tortoiseonthehalfshell Wed 29-May-13 03:23:04

I am so time-poor that I can say quite literally that I "can't find five minutes to myself all day", but I can find 1 minute, 2 minutes, and 3 minutes, and they add up over a day. Waiting for a takeaway coffee to be made? Walk over to the window and back. Early for a meeting? Walk around the block a few times instead of sitting down and waiting. Waiting for a DC to finish tying their laces? Walk into the kitchen and pour yourself a glass of water.

Basically: never sit when you can stand, never stand when you can walk, never walk when you can dance, run, skip and hop!

NightLark Wed 29-May-13 05:46:08

With three young children and a part time job, my exercise is fitted into the incidental gaps in the day.

Walking to the further shop for my lunch, parking a 20 minute walk from work, always taking the stairs never the lift. And walking briskly to the next bus stop if there is no bus in sight when I get there.

I calorie track with My Fitness Pal and would love to do some strength exercises to help withy saggy tummy / skinny-fat body, but guess that will have to wait till my time is not utterly bounded by children and work.

OrangeFootedScrubfowl Wed 29-May-13 08:16:22

I have no no idea what a fitbit is, but I would say one way to fit exercise into your life is to prioritise it as some me-time, book it in, don't think of it as an optional! I've realised I have to do this or my "I will go for a run this weekend when I get a spare hour" just never actually happens.

(I walk 6 miles a day doing the school run too Tee. Miserable in sleet isn't it?!)

Trills Wed 29-May-13 08:19:58

I have discovered the at the tube station near my work it is actually quicker to take the stairs ("there are 12 steps, please use only in an emergency" - yeah right) than to wait for the lift (no escalator).

Trills Wed 29-May-13 08:21:32

I also sometimes put "gym" into my work calendar (I am lucky enough to have flexible work hours) so that people know that I will be in late/leaving early/unavailable at lunchtime.

Evenstar Wed 29-May-13 09:02:12

My top tip would be to get a job that gives you a workout every day, I work at a pre-school, with 30 toddlers per session you never sit down, you are always carrying things, lifting things, folding tables and sweeping floors with a big broom. I am not slim, but am quite fit for my age and definitely no bingo wings with all the sweeping! At home I try and take things upstairs when I find them so I get some exercise that way, rather than waiting for lots of stuff to accumulate. I also have 9 guinea pigs so spend a lot of time outdoors sweeping the patio and cleaning hutches so lots of activity and stretches doing that.

cocoplops Wed 29-May-13 09:07:39

For me fitting it in is all about getting into a routine, otherwise I just don't do it. I also find that the more I do the more I want to do too so getting some regularity is important for that.

Like others I try and walk up and down stairs and escalators. I've got a couple of exercise DVDs and found shred quite good at getting back into doing something if you've not got long. Gardening another one which is good for getting your heart working and muscles aching!

Skipping is really good exercise, cheap and doesn't require too much space. I can literally only manage about 1 min before I'm completely out of breath and exhausted! Think its something like 10min of skipping is the same as a 20min run?? Have to build up to that!!!

MaureenMLove Wed 29-May-13 09:21:18

Last summer, my bestie (Kbear) and I, decided we needed to get fit. Neither of us are particularly overweight, but approaching 45 we decided we needed to do something! We live 100 yards from each other, but life gets in the way and we never seemed to spend that much time together. It dawned on us, that instead of spending an hour on the phone or on Facebook to each other, we should walk!

It's perfect for us. We aim to walk 3 times a week, for at least an hour and we have both improved our stamina and fitness levels. I don't think I've lost any weight, but I have certainly got some definition back and I'm very pleased.

It's a win win situation for us. It means we have the opportunity to talk face to face and it's as much about that, as it is about the walking. We walk early evening, after the family has been fed and it's brilliant.

It's a time to sound off, share our news and we don't even notice that we're actually exercising! Sometimes we have to do an extra half hour, because we're mid flow on a juicy topic and we just can't leave it til next time!

PostBellumBugsy Wed 29-May-13 09:56:30

I work full-time and I'm a single parent & I do all that walk everywhere you possibly can, use the stairs not the lift stuff. I also clean the house from top to bottom once a week, which must count for something. [hopeful emoticon needed]

I get up at 6am & I get back to the house at 6pm and after I've done all the jobs that need doing just to keep us all on track, I don't have much energy left for anything. I do force myself to do a fitness DVD sometimes, but I don't get much pleasure out of it - probably because I'm knackered. On sunny evenings and if we get homework done in time, then I'll go for a walk with the DCs.

Weekends are reasonably active too, doing gardening, washing the car, going to the supermarket, maybe a nice walk etc - but I'm not sure any of it actually improves my fitness.

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