Who better to help you figure out how to fit in fitness than Dara Theodore, an instructor at The Fhitting Room (a high-intensity-training boutique fitness studio) and busy mom of two boys? Check out our Q&A with her for info that could significantly change the way you get your sweat on.
Q. So many moms find it hard to make time for workouts. How can they make it happen?
A. Climb stairs instead of taking the elevator. Jog home from the bus stop. Those things do count. Just keep moving until you get to a point where you can fit in more. To the best of your ability, schedule in workouts as you would anything else. Treat yourself to that one class at the gym or a boutique studio. Write down what you do as soon as you get out of class and repeat it or do a variation at home. Or go online. Subscription-based sites offer new workouts every day. The Fhitting Room offers a #goFHIX on our website. Just 15 minutes—you can do it from home. Doing something is better than doing nothing.
Q. What's one move you think every mom out there needs to master? (Please don't say burpees!)
A. While I think the burpee is a fantastic move, if I were to choose just one it would be the squat. The simplest moves, from sitting to standing, all require the squat technique. And the squat translates to so many other exercises we do. It also protects your back and knees. But you need to learn to squat properly. It’s easy to wrench your back. People mistakenly put their weight on their toes instead of their heels, let their chest fall, or rock forward and stress their knee joints. You want to engage your core, hamstrings and glutes while keeping a flat back. Work the front of your body as much as the back.
Q. What workout mistakes do you see moms make all the time?
A. Only doing one kind of workout because it’s comfortable for you. For example, your cardio routine will be on point, but you don't strength train. Moms need strength training. It increases your bone density. If you have four days to work out, do two cardio and two strength. Or workouts that incorporate both. And skip the multitasking. Don’t hop on the elliptical and answer emails. In order to get a good workout, you have to focus on your form and your intensity. Twenty focused minutes will get you more than an hour of phoned-in cardio.
Q. If there's one thing you want readers to do as soon as they finish reading this story in order to be healthier, what would it be?
A. Just commit to yourself. Set one fitness goal and check it off. It could be taking a walk today or booking a class (maybe at the Fhitting Room!) next week that you’ve been afraid to go to. There’s something about checking off a goal that’s empowering.