By Sharmilee Agarwal Kapur,
With a day that begins with an alarm clock, racing against time to get children ready for school, packing lunch boxes, rushing to work or staying at home to manage household chores and then coming back to dinner preparation, children's homework, tucking them to sleep and then finally setting the next day's alarm, a mother seldom gets time to relax, let alone carve out designated time for some much-needed exercise. That's why we have listed below are simple workout routines for mothers that doesn't consume much time and can be done easily at home with minimal equipment required.
1. Stationary Lunges: Keeping feet at a hip distance apart, stand on a yoga mat. Place left foot about 3 feet behind your body, making sure both feet are parallel to each other and knees bent at 900. Straighten up, switch legs and repeat. You can challenge yourself by holding weights.
2. Pushups: Start by adopting a face down position on the floor with your feet kept together and the weight of your body on the chest. Keep your palms on the floor, distance should be shoulder width apart. Elbows should be pointed towards toes. Curl your toes upwards and the ball of your feet should touch the ground. Then raise yourself using your arms. Contract your abdomen while you do this. Make sure your head, hips and heels are in a straight line.
3. Bridge: Lie on your back with knees bent and feet on the ground. Slowly raise your hips while squeezing your butt and keeping the spine straight. Make sure your feet, shoulders and head remain on floor. Hold about three counts and slide back into original position. Go on increasing counts as you progress. You can challenge yourself by lifting one leg off the floor.
4. Planks: Lie face down with your forearms on the floor, elbows under the shoulders and legs extended. Slowly lift your hips and knees above the ground. Make sure your hips, head and heels are in a straight line. Hold this position for 25 seconds. Then rest for 10 seconds and repeat.
5. Butterfly Abs: Lie on your back with the soles of your feet placed together. Your knees would be relaxed out to the sides. Place your hands behind the head with the elbows out. Just like the knees. Tighten your abs, lift your chest and shoulders up and then release them. Repeat 10-12 times.
6. Step Ups: Stand with the platform with a short height in front of you. Place right foot on the platform. Step down with your left foot sliding behind (about 12 inches). Keep chest lifted while you're doing this. Repeat with the left foot and repeat the entire set 10-12 times. You can challenge yourself by carrying weights as you get stronger.
7. Oblique Crunches: On a yoga mat, lie on your back with knees bent. Place left ankle over the right knee and have your right hand cup your head. Then slowly lift your right shoulder towards the left knee and then come back to original position. Repeat 10-12 times, switch sides and repeat again.
(The author is Founder-Director at Atmantan Wellness Centre) l