The Short of It
Fit mom Kristy Ardo stays in shape by incorporating her little one into her workouts.
Now here's a workout I can really get behind: infant weightlifting to get back in shape post-pregnancy!
Ardo, a former competitive spring board diver, told People magazine about her life as a new mom: "Everything was completely brand new after having Tucker. I suddenly had to figure out how to juggle my own health while taking care of a baby. With the lack of sleep, it was hard to find time or energy. ... I couldn't justify going to the gym by myself after getting off work. Spending time with him is my priority."
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So Ardo found a way to stay in shape and spend quality time with her little guy. She explains how her mommy-and-me workout routine started: "One day I picked him up and did lunges and squats, and he laughed and giggled the whole time. It made my workout fun and enjoyable. Now it is a great bonding time for us."
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What began as a fun way to shed her baby weight and bond with Tucker has blossomed into a career. Ardo now chronicles their workout routines on her blog, Baby Fit Gym, and Instagram. Her moves are kind of brilliant, using the now 26-pound toddler as added resistance for abdominal exercises and as a weight for arm and leg toning.
For this soon-to-be mom-of-two (she's pregnant again!), inspiring other moms is the best part.
"It gives moms hope that they can still get back into shape after having kids. Just because you have a baby doesn't mean you have to put your health on the back burner! You can turn it into a positive bonding time," she says.
What I love about Ardo's "Baby Fit Gym" is how much Tucker clearly enjoys this special time with his mom. Sure, she's getting the fat-burning, muscle-building benefits, but he's not only learning about how to keep his body healthy, he's getting extra play time with his mommy.
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I also love this idea because I completely relate to the guilt Ardo says she felt about spending time at the gym when she could be home with her son. I too struggle to find a balance between making my health a priority and not being completely selfish by logging hours in workout classes.
What works best for me is doing exercise videos at home. I love when my kids pop into the room and do a few moves with me. It's funny to watch them try to mimic what I'm doing, and I feel proud they're seeing their mom try to stay in shape. Of course, sometimes they start crawling between my legs and can trip me up, but at least I can always hit "pause."
Do you incorporate your child into your workout routine?