How to have a full body work out while playing with your kids outside

As a full time mom, I know how difficult it is to fit in those work outs.  I found a way to have a full body work out while playing with my kids outside.  All what I need is a jogging stroller, a playground and my kids.

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I start with my warm up, jogging to a playground that is about 1 mile (10-15 minutes) away from our house.  Once I get to the park, I start playing game with my girls: an animal game (monkey bars), wheels on the bus game (squads on a carousel or a swing), a counting game( holding my legs up while hanging on a ladder). We also play “who can jump the fastest to the other side go the playground” (since I am bigger I have to jump on one leg), or “who is the fastest crab”  (get in the squad position and try to walk without getting up), or some other silly game that my girls come up with every time.

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If a park has a monkey bar, we love to play Guess Who Am I.  I usually go first, making funny noises while I try to get myself across.  My girls have to guess what animal I am.   When it is their turn, they try to do the same, everyone laughs and I get my upper body work out.

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Most playground structures have a ladder, where kids can climb to get to the top. I use the ladder for  stretching my back and to get a good lower abdominal workout.  We call it a Counting Game.  I have to hang on the highest bar and raise my straight legs as high as I can, while my girls are counting.  It sound very easy, but I can’t keep hanging with my legs at 90 degree for longer than 15 second.  My preschoolers love this game, especially my 3 year old, who is just learning to count.  Sometimes, my older daughter says  she is too old for counting game, so I have her hang next to me to see who can stay on the bar the longest

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Our playground also has a carousel, our absolute favorite Wheel On a Bus Game.  I like to do my squads on it while it is in motion.  I know it sounds tricky, but it is not.  I get my kids on a carousel, put on leg on the edge while holding with two hand to the bar.  I use my other leg to push off. While I am on the ground I am in a squad position, then I release, then I get back to squad, then I release again, etc.  It is very effective exercise for my legs and thighs, and kids love it.  I usually do 15-20 on each side.

If we are at a playground without a carousel, I do my squads while pushing a swing.  One push equals one squad, easy.  Carousel or swing, to make it more fun for kids, I always sing some kids songs.wpid-20140928_100803.jpg

When my girls are done with my games and they just want to play by themselves, I get down and do my plain pushups (15-20  repetitions), some leg kicks (15-20 each leg), and plain old sit ups. Most of the time during those exercises my girls will come and try to mimic me or just make fun of me.wpid-20140928_100417.jpg

Usually, the playground takes about  30 minutes. When we are done, I get my girls back to the stroller or their bikes and we run home,the same one mile back.

When I look at the result: I run 2 miles, had full body work out, and my girls had fun quality time with their mommy at a park.

6 thoughts on “How to have a full body work out while playing with your kids outside

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