There is no doubt in our minds that Lisa Druxman is one of the experts on how to incorporate a fitness routine into your daily walk with your infant/baby. She is the founder of Strollerstrides, and is also a long time PAM Advisor. She focuses on moving your body here with a stroller walk, but we want to also add that you can do the same with a walk using a baby wrap or baby sling. Always make sure that your baby is securely in your wrap as well as stroller. And you don’t need to do acrobatics folks, a brisk walk, as you will see below, will get you motivated! Team PAM
New moms often feel house bound with their little bundle. Chances are that you are ready for a breath of fresh air. It’s time for you to get out and workout with your baby in the stroller! Exposure to daylight can provide you both with a much-needed mood boost. Plus, it stimulates production of Vitamin D in both you and baby. Connecting with nature is always soothing for the both of you. So on days when you need a breather, strap in little one for the hills (or the park, or playground). Weather not good? Go to the shopping mall.
You can get a cardio workout that burns lots of calories by picking up the pace from a slow walk to a brisk “stroll” with your stroller.
Any stroller will work, with the exception of an umbrella stroller (these are not designed for stability or speed.) It’s easiest to workout with a jogging stroller, which steers more easily and allows you to maintain better posture. Whichever stroller you choose, make sure that the wheels and construction are solid, and that baby is comfortably strapped in.
The beauty about being outside is that your child is happily distracted—and for a moment, you’re off the hook from entertaining duties. Babies under one year are absolutely fascinated with leaves blowing on a tree and clouds moving through the sky. That’s not to say that you aren’t fun to watch: In our Stroller Strides classes, half the fun for the kids is watching the mommies do silly things!
When you are doing your exercises, turn baby to look at a busy playground, scenic park, rushing pedestrians, or whatever catches his or her fancy. Or face baby and keep up the rapport as you whip through your routine by singing songs. Research shows that you can teach toddlers new words through songs. (You may not think you are the greatest crooner in the world, but your baby sure loves your voice!)
If your baby isn’t crazy about the stroller, be patient and firm. Do what feels right, but keep in mind that if you take him out every time he whines, he’ll learn that crying is the key to getting out. Stick to a regular schedule of specific days and times when you use the stroller. Your stroller workout may become your favorite part of the day!
All of us at PAM, including our guest authors, are mom’s with experience, NOT Health Professionals. Please consult with your Medical Provider before starting any exercise program. And if you are newly post partum, check in with your Health Provider to makes sure you have the “ok” to start doing a daily walking routine.