It’s wonderful to work out in front of our children, isn’t it? Setting a good example for health and all? Oh who am I kidding, the truth is my three-year-old is all over me like a rash whenever I start to do anything that remotely resembles a workout! Here is a Mummy (or Daddy) version of a Core-strengthening workout from Runner’s World Magazine. I take no responsibility for injuries sustained while working out with a small child as weight equipment!!
1. Step Downs
(A) Lie on your back with one hand under your lower back. Lift your legs so your thighs are at a 90-degree angle with the floor, and bend both knees to a 90-degree angle. Now let your child balance on your shins. (B) Tighten your lower back so that it doesn’t move up or down, and slowly lower your right foot to within 1 inch of the floor. Keep your right knee bent at a 90-degree angle, and maintain the position of your left leg. Hold your child up with your arms. Hold your right foot 1 inch off the floor for 2 seconds, then return it to the start position next to the left leg. Repeat the same action, but this time lower the left foot. Repeat both sequences three to five times, or as many times as your child will allow you to
2. Prone Stabilizer
(A) Start on your stomach, and raise yourself into a modified pushup position, with all your weight balanced on your forearms and toes. Keep your back as straight as possible as you let your little monkey scramble onto your back. (B) Slowly raise your left leg until it lines up with your back. Hold this position for 4 seconds, then lower the left leg, and repeat for 4 seconds with the right leg. Repeat both sequences three to five times, or until you collapse with exhaustion.
(A) Lie on your back with your arms beyond your head, and your feet planted on the floor directly below the knees. Now position your munchkin on top of your belly. Press down on your feet, and lift your torso and upper legs until they form a straight line. Your child will probably now pretend you are a slide and proceed to slide down your front. Fun times! (B) With your weight on your shoulders and your feet, slowly extend the right leg by straightening the knee. Be sure to keep your back straight. Hold for 4 seconds, then repeat with the left leg. Repeat both sequences three to five times or until you have had enough of the shenanigans.
Don’t forget to follow this with a nice relaxing stretch. Oh yes that’s right, you’re a parent, who has time for stretching! Pat yourself on the back instead for managing to fit in some core strengthening exercises into your day!