Military Special Needs Network

Proudly Supporting all Military Families with a Special Needs Dependent

Working Out: Good for More than Just the Booty

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It’s that time of year where we set new goals and promise ourselves that we are going to follow through with them. Working out tends to be a common goal set by many of us because we want to lose weight or make our butts look a little bit more perkier in those cute jeans. I would like everyone to stop for a minute and think about the perks for working out other than losing weight or fitting into those jeans. As mothers with special needs children and military wives our needs and time tends to be different than most mothers. First we have little time for ourselves let alone to work out. We are often worn out physical, emotionally and mentally. The physical demands can be different for some of us; lifting equipment and children can cause strained muscles. I am here to tell you that you don’t have to work out for an hour a day at the gym to reap the benefits of a good work out. The benefits to working out are an increase in endorphins, reduction in stress and anxiety, increases self esteem, lowers risk of physical injury in daily routine and decreases risk of heart disease, lowers blood pressure and risk of diabetes.

There are several ways that we can achieve our goals. There is no one shoes fits all for working out. I would like to share with you different types of works out. First off it’s important to remember you have to work out when it is best for you. It might take you a little while to figure this out and that is okay. It might be in the morning, afternoon during nap time or late after the kids have gone to bed. It might even take you trying different work out types to know what will work best for you. Be patients with yourself you will figure it out.

There are at home circuit work outs that require no equipment that only uses body weight( plyometric) for toning, strength building and cardio. This is great for momma’s that find leaving the house for a work out to be difficult. Squat jumps, jumping jacks and mountain climbers are examples of plyometric. You want to keep your body moving to keep your heart rate up to get the benefits of a cardio work out. 
An example work out might be:

*Jumping Jacks (as many as you can in 60 seconds)
*Rest (60 seconds)
*Squats (60 seconds)
*Rest (60 seconds)
*Mountain Climbers (60 seconds)
*Rest (60 seconds)

Repeat this 3 times. Remember that each set will become slower and complete lest reps because you are pushing your body. This is perfectly okay and expected. If you don’t have time to do all three sets at one time you can spread each set out through out the day. Your body will burn more calories over the next hour after the work out than if you were sitting. So even though you are spreading out the work out through out the day you can are still getting a cardio work out in. Try to get in 30 minutes three times a week. The great thing about this work out type is that you set the pace. If you want to get a more intense work out in you want to speed up exercises while if you want something not so intense you slow it down. There are plenty of online resources for different work outs if this is something that you would like to check into. This is one of my personal favorite plyo sites http://plyometricworkout.net/.

Group work outs can provide a social and emotional release for those that have the time and ability to meet up at a set location. Body Boot Camp is an example of a group work out that is picking up steam with military wives across the country. Body Boot Camp is an interval-style of training, which helps promotes weight loss and fitness goals by burning calories by working out with a higher intensity training sessions. This type of work out is great for those that want something more intense with people to encourage them on. For those looking to work out with other mommies and include their children into the work out the Stroller Warriors is a great group to check out. Currently there are 15 chapters in the US. Works outs include running, dancing and yoga for examples. The great thing about this group is they are all about promoting a healthy life style while making new friendships. Stephanie Geraghty is the founder of Stroller Warrior, a military spouse and a special needs momma also. You can check out the group at http://www.strollerwarriors.com/.

Now we come to Yoga. Yes Yoga is a wonderful work out that promotes not only toning and muscles strengthening but meditation to help ease our stress levels. This is something that can be done at home or in a class. http://life.gaiam.com/article/benefits-yoga has online videos that you can check out. My 4 year loves to do yoga with me. Okay it isn’t as quite as I would like for it to be but we do giggle a lot while we do our poses. 
I hope that this article helps you open your mind about the different types of work outs and the benefits. Despite everything that we take on daily we can find ways to take care of ourselves physically, emotionally and just maybe socially. Maybe we might get that perky booty with all of our hard work in the end.

Samantha_stars

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