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Mom Stays Fit by Making Her Baby Her Workout Partner

The Short of It

Fit mom Kristy Ardo stays in shape by incorporating her little one into her workouts.

The Lowdown

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.

The Upshot

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?

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