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As a parent it can be tough to find the time to workout and stay in shape. Between work, keeping the house in order, and taking care of the kids there’s barely enough time sleep, let alone head to the gym several times a week. But that doesn’t mean you can’t sneak in a little workout here and there. Here are several ways to workout while the kids play.

6 Ways to Workout While The Kids Play

The key to getting this done is to multitask and do a few exercises while the kids are playing, or napping, or working out right along with you. How you make this work will of course depend on the age of your kids and your own circumstances, but here are some ideas to get you thinking.

You don’t need to spend loads of money on a babysitter, new equipment, or a gym membership to get in a workout while the kids play. Take a look at what you already have and what’s available around you and you’ll be surprised at the number of ways you can make it happen.

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6 Ways to Workout While The Kids Play

1. Baby Jogger, Bike or Scooter

Invest in a baby jogger if your kids are small enough to ride in a stroller. Strap them in when it’s time for a nap and walk or run around the neighborhood while they sleep. If you have older kids, have them ride a bike or scooter and come along with you.

2. Parks and Playgrounds

Check out the parks and playgrounds in your area. If you’re lucky you can find one with a playground area in the middle and a walking path going around it. You can run or walk laps while the kids play on the playground.

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And speaking of playgrounds or even the swing set you may have in your own backyard, take a look at it and see what kinds of exercises you can do on it. You may be able to find a bar that allows you to do pull ups and chin ups while the kids play. Or use the steps leading up to the playground equipment to do some simple step workouts. Get creative and make it work.

Here are exercises you can do at the playground:

  • Pull-ups – Also try chin-ups.
  • Monkey bars – Also try crossing the bars sideways.
  • Step-ups – Facing the steps, tep up and down on a set of steps, alternating legs. For an extra challenge do step-ups on a bench. To really get your heart rate going, jump up with both legs, then step down and repeats.
  • Split squats – Stand with your back to bench, place one foot on the bench and one leg on the ground in front of you. Lower your body towards the ground then stand.
  • Lunges – Also try walking lunges.
  • Front leg raises – Facing the steps, step up with one leg while lifting the other leg up behind you.
  • Lateral leg raises – Stand with one side to the steps. Keeping one foot on the step, lift the other leg up at your side. Do this for each side.

Playground Exercises

  • Knee raises – Keep one leg on the step and one on the ground. Raise the knee of the leg on the ground towards your chest. Do this for each side.
  • Tricep dips – On a bench or on the steps for an extra challenge.
  • Push-ups – Off a bench, a step, or on the ground.
  • Sit-ups – On a bench, on the slide with your feet up and your head at the bottom, or hanging upside down with your legs holding onto a climbing structure, perform sit-ups with knees bent. For an added challenge, do them with legs straight.
  • Hanging knee raises – While hanging on a monkey bar, raise your knees to a 90-degree angle and lower. Raise and lower at a slower pace for extra challenge.
  • Hanging leg raises – While hanging on a monkey bar, with legs straight raise your legs to a 90-degree angle with your body and lower. Raise and lower at a slower pace for extra challenge.
  • Climb – Climb the fireman’s pole as high as you can before slide down.
  • Body rows – Holding onto a bar at chest level or lower, keeping feet in place, lower your body into a tight plank position. With arms close to your sides, raise and lower your body pulling your chest to the bar.

3. Play with the Kids

And let’s not forget one of the best ways to workout while the kids play. It’s all about just going out and playing with them. Go on family bike rides, go for a hike, or take a Frisbee out to the park. Playing catch is a great way to get in an interval workout. If you have access to a pool, playing water games is a sure way to burn off calories. It’s one of my favorites ways to workout while the kids play. You’ll be surprised how much of workout you can get just from running around with the kiddos.

4. Workout Together

Get the kids involved and do your workouts together. That could mean holding your baby while you do crunches and squats. Or maybe you turn on some fun music (check out the Summer 2017 Workout Songs Playlist) and have the kids dance around in the living room along with you. Even yoga can be fun for the kids and for you.

Put on a workout video or watch an online workout. The great thing about this option is you can pause the workout when you need to. You know, someone almost always needs a potty break or needs a diaper change. Here are some of my faves.

Working out together is a great way to spend quality time as a family and get everyone moving around more. And kids don’t mind burpees as much as adults do.

Related Article: Workouts

5. Set Up a Playdate

Here’s another idea for you. Call up a friend and set up a playdate. The kids can play together while the parents workout. Or kids and parents can play games together. You’d be surprised how much of a sweat you can get going jumping rope, skipping, running races, and even playing several rounds of tag or hopscotch.

6. Start an Exercise Group

Why not make it a regular event and gather other parents for an ongoing Exercise Group Meetup. Some local town groups offer free space to gather or exercise. Take turns with one or two parents watching the kids while the other parents workout. Rotate who provides the workout of the day. New to the neighborhood? Contact local moms and parenting groups to see if there’s one already in place.

Related Article: Tips on How to Win a Step Challenge

Let’s Do This!

As you can see, with a little creativity, you can still find time to stay in shape. So grab pen and paper and write down 3 ways you can workout while the kids play. Then plan a day or two this week to go and do it.

Do you have other ways to workout while the kids play? Which of the above ways are you going to try? Comment below. I’d love to know.

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47 comments on “6 Ways to Workout While The Kids Play”

  1. These are such great suggestions, I often use my kiddo as an excuse for why I can’t workout, but maybe I need to give a few of these tips a try!

  2. These are great tips!! I’m not yet a mom but I know that finding time to fit in workouts is so challenging for my friends who do have kiddos. Using what’s available (and playground equipment!) is pretty genius if you ask me 🙂

    • Thanks! Share this with your friends. They may get a few good ideas from it. And even if you don’t have kids, it’s still fun to workout at the playground 🙂

  3. As a mom of 3 kids, I know how hard it can be to get a work out in, but I’ll give these a try. Thanks for the ideas.

    • Yes, it’s not easy, but definitely doable. And if you start early, you set your kids up to understand the importance of being healthy.

    • Yes, it’s so true! Especially with obesity rates so high and with the amount of time the kids, and us parents as well, spend on electronics, it’s so important to do what you can to lead a healthy lifestyle. What else do you do to teach them?

      • My son’s super active so getting creative with exercise comes easily (at this at this stage). We place more emphasis on making healthy snack choices so he can learn what helps provide his body with healthy energy 🙂

        • That’s fantastic! It’s great that you’re starting him off early so it’ll become second nature to him to choose wisely.

    • Hahaha, you can still sit once in a while. Just don’t fall asleep. That’s great you did yoga with the kids! Yes, naptime was sacred. I remember those days.

  4. Trying to find a good exercise routine as a stay at home toddler mom is hard! Thanks so much for these ideas, I will definitely be adding them into our routine!

    • I’m so glad you’ll be able to use these ideas. Yes, it’s not easy to stay in shape while they kids are little, but with some creativity, it can be done.

  5. Wow! You definitely have a lot of different workouts! I love a lot of these workouts and I will definitely be trying some of these once I have kids! Thanks!

  6. These are such great ideas. I’m big on oncidental fitness because with four littles who has time for anything else? I love your suggestions that include the kiddos like playing and taking them to the park!

    • It certainly is a challenge, but if you start early on getting the kids used to the fact that mommy wants to exercise or get moving, it’ll become second nature to them. Thanks for stopping by!

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  8. I tried some of the exercises but I haven’t worked out in a while so they were challenging. But I’ll keep at it. Thank you for sharing this.

    • We all start somewhere, but the important thing is you got started. Now keep it up and you’ll be looking for ways to make them more challenging before you know it.

  9. Nice read, I just passed this onto a friend. We get our kids together a couple times a week and this would be great to do in our backyards.

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