how to get 10,000 steps as a full-time working mom

I’m going to be real with y’all today, friends.  I always try to be real, but today especially.  There are a million different kinds of fitness trackers these days, and it seems like everyone has one.  Everyone is competing against each other, against themselves to achieve that magic number – 10,000 – steps each day.  As a full-time working mom and as a fourth grade teacher, I always thought OF COURSE I reach that number.  Without a doubt, no questions asked, I’m sure I get 10,000 steps each day.

And then I got my first activity tracker.  Boy, was I wrong.  By like several thousand!  I could not believe it!  How was that possible? I feel like I’m on my feet all day long!  Well, it turns out, 10,000 steps is a lot, a whole heck of a lot of steps.

If you workout everyday, the 10,000 steps per day goal is a lot more achievable, in my opinion.  I do think you should be doing more than just cardio (lift those weights, ladies!), but if you have time to workout everyday, then you have time to get to steppin’!  When I was home for the summer, I always reached my step goal because I took so many walks, sometimes multiple times a day!  I loved it!  But now I’m back to work…

how to get 10,000 steps as a busy full time working mom

That photo is the picture of REAL LIFE.  It was after a busy (always!) day of work.  My makeup is mostly worn off.  My roots are in dire need of a touch up.  My dirty hair is sloppily thrown up.  I look tired.  But I’ve got my baby boy in my arms, we’re happy and healthy, so what more can I ask for?

Wearing my new Polar Loop 2 activity tracker has really opened my eyes to how easy it can be to be more sedentary than active, but it has also rejuvenated me in setting a fitness goal.  Being a mom is HARD for a variety of reasons.  Being a full-time working mom is another huge challenge (that’s a whole other post for another time!).  One major obstacle is time.  The mere fact that I work nine hours each day greatly limits my ability to freely go to the gym, head out on a run, or workout how or when I please.  Before and after work I have William.  I’m not complaining by any measure, simply stating facts.  So this has forced me to get creative with how I get my 10,000 steps each day.  And I’ll be honest: it doesn’t happen every day, but since I’ve set it as my goal, it’s happening more often than not.

How to Get 10,000 Steps as a Full-Time Working Mom

Take advantage of what your work offers.

teampolar

I’d be willing to bet that most work places talk about fitness or healthy living in some capacity.  Whether it’s having a gym on site, setting up challenges between staff members, or having various incentives for different programs, more and more work places want their employees to be healthy.  Healthy people lead to increased productivity.  That’s a fact.  For me, it’s a quick 15-minute workout twice a week.  My principal is awesome in that she allows the staff members to workout on Monday and Wednesday mornings before the students come.  One teacher leads these workouts.  A major bonus for us is that we get to wear workout clothes all day if we participate in the workout!  It’s a great way to get moving early, build muscle, stretch your body, and foster camaraderie among the staff.

Get up every 15 minutes.

Set your fitness tracker to alert you during periods of inactivity.  Even if you walk across the room or go get a drink of water, those are that many more steps you are adding to your day.  And if you do that several times a day or even an hour?  Way more steps!  It doesn’t take that much longer either!  Build these routines into your day until they become habitual.

Move with your kids!

team polar

At school, my students create “WODs,” workout of the day.  Most days (when I’m not in a skirt or dress), I participate in it with them.  It’s just three or four exercises that we use as a brain break during transition times.  Just like kids, we adults need to move, too!  Another fabulous brain break that we love is GoNoodle.com.  If you’re a teacher or a mom, check it out.  There are tons of short clips that lead students in different dances, songs, moves, and exercises.  It’s a blast, and you better believe I do it right along with my students!

At home, I move with William all the time!  He sees his momma moving, so he wants to be active!  I love it!  I’m so not a mom to plop my kiddo in front of the tv.  He’s 18-months and has so much to learn and explore.  Sometimes he plays on the foam roller while I might be doing lunges or some other exercise.  A couple of nights ago we were playing with the ping pong paddles and balls.  He would throw a ball to me and I would hit it as far as I could in the basement.  While he was retrieving the ball, I would literally sprint around the ping pong table as many times as I could before he was ready for another round.  I was breathing hard, William was cracking up, and we played this for a really long time!  Eventually, it turned into us chasing each other around the ping pong table.  It was a lot of fun and my steps were adding up!

Be conscientious of how you get places.

Park your car farther away.  Take the longer walking route.  Use the stairs.  You’ve heard those ideas before.  Now do it!  Small changes yield big results.

Get outside!

stroller polar

I’ve already mentioned how much I love taking walks.  After work can be tricky these days because William is so exhausted from school.  If I walk too long, he will fall asleep in the stroller which will mess up bedtime that we worked so hard on.  Many days, we can squeeze in a quick walk though!

FINISH YOUR STEPS!

polar 10k

Ok, I’ll be honest.  If I’m really close to hitting that 10,000 mark after William goes to sleep, I will literally walk around my house, robe, slippers, and all until I reach that goal.  Achieving a goal feels SO good.

Now let me tell you about my most favorite fitness tracker – the Polar Loop 2.  Most importantly, it comes in three colors: white, black, and pink.  I like the way it looks; it’s a sleek design and not bulky at all.  Also, it comes in one size and you cut it to make it fit perfectly.  It’s easy to take on and off, and it stays on without a problem.  The features:

  • Activity Tracking: steps, calories, activity, sleep, heart rate (with hr sensor)
  • Waterproof: use it while swimming
  • Mobile Connectivity: seamless communication via Bluetooth smart sensors to Polar Flow App on mobile devices
  • Vibration Alert: be alerted for periods of inactivity and smart notifications
  • Smart Notifications: get notifications of incoming calls, messages, and calendar reminders

Even better, you can get your Polar Loop 2 now using the discount code POLARFITBLOG.  The code is case-sensitive.  This code provides 20% off of any Polar Heart Rate Monitor or activity tracker. There is no quantity limit. The code is good online at Polar.com. The code is only good in the US. It expires on 12/31/15.

What are you waiting for?! Order your activity tracker and GET MOVING!

every little bit counts

Do you use an activity tracker? How do you reach 10,000 steps a day?

This post is sponsored by FitFluential on behalf of Polar.

12 thoughts on “how to get 10,000 steps as a full-time working mom

  1. This is great – and I don’t even have any kids! I’ve never invested in a fitness tracker, because I figure I work out everyday and eat healthy, so I should be good to go. But this may have convinced me – I could be walking 500 or 50,000 steps. Who knows, right?! Thanks for the tips, lady!

    P.S. William is SO stickin’ adorable!! 🙂

  2. Something that I am very much spoiled by is the fact that I walk to work. That helps a lot! I think you have to find a way to make movement fun–get your kiddo involved, help them start to see the fun in activity, too!

  3. Liz this is so great. Seriously, 10,000 steps is no joke!! I love just getting in a little bit of exercise throughout the day. It helps me recharge and I physically feel better which helps me be more engaged at work instead of slumping over needing coffee at 3pm!!

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