Exercise is essential to a healthy happy life. Some would even argue that movement is life. Move it or lose it as they say. So why oh why is it so hard to do it sometimes? If I may brag for a moment, my exercise habits used to be on point! I exercised regularly at least three times a week, I varied it up, I kept my body guessing, and I had the muscle tone and stamina to show for it. Cut to post baby. Oh my. What a difference eighteen months and a little human can make. If I may speak candidly, shit is toe up from the flo up. No amount of spanx can correct whats happening here. I had and excuse for a while. “I’m a new mom!”, “I don’t have the time or energy!”. “It’s baby weight!” I kind of feel like a year and a half into the game those reasons don’t hold as much water as they once did. I need to suck it up and get moving. Not just to look better, but more importantly to feel better. Exercise not only improves your health on every level, but also improves your mood, lowers your stress levels, and improves your sex life. Umm… say what now? You heard me. Want more/better sex? Get your workout on. So how can we get motivated? For starters we can make exercise easier to fit into our busy lives.
I personally love classes. They keep me motivated and I am much more likely to push myself than I am on a treadmill. I want the motivation of a teacher, and the challenge of new and interesting exercises. The trouble is, who has the time for an hour-long class, not to mention the transit time of getting there and back when you have a toddler at home? It’s too easy to say F it and opt for the extra half hour of sleep, or more cuddles with the cutest thing the universe ever created. Exercise will lose every time. So I have set out to make it easier, to spend less time but still get an AWESOME workout. To do something on those days that I know I won’t make it to a class or a gym. These options take all he guesswork out of it, make it super easy and will kick your ass (in a good way) in minimal time. No more excuses. Wether you’re a busy parent, busy with a career, or both, or even traveling and don’t have access to your usual workouts, I’ve got you covered. These workouts are as good as you can get for much less time and money. All you need is a phone, laptop or tablet. Most are even FREE!
BEST WORKOUT APPS FOR A QUICK AND EFFECTIVE WORKOUT
QE SQUARED – Nicole Stuart is a celebrity Pilates teacher known for shaping some of the best bodies in Hollywood, most notably Kate Hudson. This App has four different workouts that target butt, abs, hips and arms in 10 minute targeted workouts. It also has cardio workouts and playlists to choose from. Do all four for a full body workout or you can mix and match depending on how much time you have and what you want to work on. It is comprehensive, intense and easy to use anywhere for those of us on the go. $7.99
7 MINUTE WORKOUT CHALLENGE – This App combines 12 exercises that can be executed in seven minutes but achieves the results of an hourlong workout. It employs the method of High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT) which increases your metabolism for the entire day. They also track your results to keep you motivated. $2.99 iPhone or Android. $3.99 iPad.
HOT 5 – This App was recently purchased by weight watcher’s. It has a multitude of workouts to choose from, HIIT, Yoga, abs, butt, arms. A personal trainer will lead you through a five minute workout. You can mix and match and create your ideal lineup based on how much time you want to spend. The quality and design are great and the best part is it’s FREE!!!
SWORKIT – Like having your own personal trainer. Choose from strength, cardio, yoga or stretching. You design your own custom workout and choose the length of time that you want to do it. For example, you can time it to the length of a podcast you want to listen too. Or you can choose one of their prepackaged workouts, like the 30 minute workout that will give you an intense total body workout in a mere 30 minutes. This App is also FREE!
BEST YOUTUBE WORKOUTS
Most of these workouts were recommended to me by a friend who also has a toddler and used these to stay in shape (she has a fabulous body). Shout out to Shawna Who!
BALLET BEAUTIFUL – Want to look like Natalie Portman in Black Swan? Look no further. Mary Helen Bowers was Portman’s trainer for the film. She is a ballerina that danced for a decade with the New York City Ballet. These workouts cover hips/butt/thighs, abs, arms and range anywhere from 10 to 20 minutes. Make no mistake, this dainty flower will kick your A$$. It is harder than you can even imagine and will totally transform your bod.
VSX Sport – Want to know how Victoria’s Secret models train for their runway shows? Here it is. Do the same workouts that get those freaks of nature in tip-top thong wearing shape. Most of the workouts range from three to ten minutes. They are broken up into body parts, core, butt, thighs, arms. Mix and match for a great workout in less than 30 minutes.
REBECCA-LOUISE – Personal trainer Rebecca Louise is upbeat fun and has quick yet intense workouts for every body part. She keeps you motivated and works out with her precious little dog Alphie by her side which makes me love her that much more. These videos are generally around 10 minutes so you can mix and match depending on your timeframe and schedule.
FITNESS BLENDER – With over 500 free workout videos, husband and wife team Kelli and Daniel Segars believe in a “no -gimmick” honest approach to fitness. Sick of seeing slick marketing campaigns promoting trainers without proper credentials or skills, they set out to offer effective workouts that would be accessible to everyone. Both personal trainers with combined degrees in food & nutrition, sociology and psychology, they have created a site that offers free fitness as well as nutritional advice.
Okay! Let’s HIIT it!