9 Ways Dads Sneak Exercise Into Busy Schedules (Helpful Ideas)

I saw this on the web a few weeks ago.

It really resonated with me!
(especially the staying-healthy part)

Easier said than done, but well said!

Some dads love to work out and be active.

But let’s just face it – not all of us were designed to run.

For most of us, it’s really hard to find time to take care of ourselves–especially when it comes to exercise and working out.

It’s just one of these things that we often don’t prioritize and it backfires.

Time spent exercising comes back two-fold. We get more energy and a better mood in return!

So, let’s get into it.

Unique Ways Dads Squeeze In Exercise

These are some creative ways I’ve seen dads squeeze exercise into their busy lives.

#1 Play Nintendo Wii Together

I’ll start with my favorite.

There are so many fun games that will let you jump, swing, hit, dance, stretch, etc.

I much prefer these games over computer games that tie you to a chair. (also for kids!)

#2 Exercise At Home

I used to go to the gym weekly (before kids!). Lifting weights was much more my thing than running. That’s just not going to happen anymore.

Now, I use a rowing machine at home.

The best thing about it is that you can watch TV series while exercising.

I always watch TV series when I row. Lately, I’ve been rewatching the sci-fi series Fringe. I love that show!

I normally use it before I’m taking a shower so it doesn’t take up too much extra time.

It’s stored in our living room so it’s easy to access, and we both use it on a weekly basis.

#3 Work Out With Your Kids

If you have bigger kids – obviously you can run together etc.

But what about us dads with small kids?

Here are a few ideas:

  • Have them ride their bike while you run
  • Get a jogging stroller
  • Join them on the trampoline
  • Encourage active games and play

As dads, it’s important that when we are home we are present.

Kids love physical activities with dad – skipping, hopscotch, and hula hoops!

These are great special-time activities that you can play indoors or outdoors.

#4 Walk To The Grocery Store (With Your Kids)

We have a grocery wagon like this:

We use it to go grocery shopping. Our kid can jump in the cart when he gets tired and it works pretty well.

It’s slower than driving, for sure, but our kid loves it and we often have a good time. We do it during “family time”.

Much easier than getting him in the car!

Here’s why I love this wagon:

  • We save gas
  • We get exercise
  • It’s nice to get outside

(It’s great for picnics, beach trips, etc. as well!)

#5 Get into the Garden

Dads with lawns know how much maintenance gardens need.

Little kids love practical tasks!

Why not get your kids involved while you:

  • Dig
  • Push
  • Pull

Pro-Dad Tip: Have you tried pushing your 34-pound kid in a wheelbarrow!? Talk about a workout!

#6 Take the Stairs

Okay, this isn’t really unique. But it works.

Take the stairs where possible – especially if you live in an apartment like me.

It might mean leaving 5 minutes early or walking at a pace.

And it’s also a fun way to race your older kids if you don’t have a large yard or access to a playground.

#7 Put on the Baby Carrier

If you’re a dad to a really small baby a baby carrier, is likely in your survival kit–especially in those first 3 months!

Babies need to be close to us.

Tiny babies sleep most of the day. You can take them for a brisk walk after work or after dinner. Or in the early hours!

Don’t be afraid of the cold!

We live in a country where it’s cold for a huge part of the year. It’s super common here to take your kids outside in almost all weather (provided your baby is warm and well-covered).

You can do it, too 😊

If you’re scratching your head thinking, “a baby what?!” – here’s a list you can look up:

  • Baby Ring Sling
  • Baby Wrap (for really tiny babies)
  • Ergobaby
  • BabyBjorn Baby Carrier
  • And more.

Many of these can be found in Target, or you can often pick them up at a kids’ thrift store.

Pro-Dad Tip: This is also a good way to give your kid’s mom a break.

#8 Sit On an Exercise Ball

If you’re a dad with a 9-5 desk job it can be really hard to find time to look after your own body.

And look after your family.

Sometimes it seems that there just isn’t enough time in a day!

A  clever way to sneak in a core workout is to swap your office chair for an exercise ball.

Researchers recommend that you don’t sit on a ball all day, but rather for short time periods during the day.

But if balancing isn’t your thing, you can order an exercise ball-office chair combo!

You can order these online – look up “balance ball chairs”.

#9 Dance Parties

Toddlers have music in their bones. They just have to groove to a good song.

And they really love dancing when it’s with mom or dad!

This will probably only work for a 5-minute high-intensity cardio – but worth it for the laughter with your kids!

Pro-Dad Tip: This a clever way of getting the wriggles out of your kids (any age) while they wait for dinner.

Thanks for reading.

Good luck, dads!

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