The term ‘dad bod’ is used to refer to physiques that are common in middle-aged men, which are often a combination of muscular and overweight features. There is also a common notion that when you become a dad, developing a ‘dad bod’ is something inevitable, and there is some truth to this.
When you become a parent, a lot of your time will suddenly be devoted to the little being that you’ve created. This often leaves parents with little time to spare to take care of themselves, much less to keep up with their regular fitness routines between work and household management. As a result, both moms and dads tend to gain weight, and many have trouble shedding the weight off after the baby comes.
Nevertheless, there are still a lot of ways to get fit and stay fit despite the heavy burden of parenting a newborn. Here are some of the best ones that you can try:
1. Sign up for a fitness program
It can be difficult to find a fitness routine that works for you, especially if you have little to no knowledge about fitness in the first place. If this is the case, it may be a good idea to go all in and commit to a fitness program that offers personalized training such as purify4life.com. With a fitness instructor guiding you, you no longer have to do any of the guesswork. Moreover, you can be sure that your training program is tailor-fit to your needs, especially for schedule constraints as a father.
2. Do the minimum, but consistently
The best way to get into a workout routine is to start with whatever you can do consistently, given your circumstances as a new dad. Don’t shoot for intense or extreme workouts, at least not right away, since they will likely burn you out when you’re already stressed about parenting and everything else that’s going on in your life.
Stick with the workouts that you can perform consistently and realistically, even if they may not be as intense as you’d like. The key here is frequency, so even if you can only exercise for 30 minutes at a time, aim to do it at least five or six times a week.
3. Exercise when the baby is asleep
As a parent, you are most likely going to get more things done when the baby is asleep. Unfortunately, for newborns, these spaces for free time only last an average of two to three hours. Still, it’s plenty of time to squeeze in a quick workout before it’s time to feed or change them again.
Better yet, have your partner work out with you when the baby is asleep. In this way, you can both get fit and make a bonding moment out of it with just the two of you.
4. Change up your diet
New parents tend to have trouble preparing fresh, healthy meals because a) cooking takes too long, and b) there are a million other things to do in the house. If this is the case for you and your partner, it may be time to look into meal-prepping to rely on something else other than takeout or instant foods. With meal-prepping, instead of cooking one meal at a time, you’re going to be preparing large batches of food and reheat portions when it’s time to eat.
However, you don’t need to do a complete one-eighty with your diet. Start adding nutrient-rich foods into your meal plan before you cut out the ‘bad foods’, especially if you haven’t been eating right since the baby arrived. Over time, your body will get used to healthier foods and will crave less for foods high in sugar, salt, and fat.
5. Set milestones and track your progress
One of the best ways to stay motivated is to set milestones for yourself and track your progress. For example, if you aim to drop down to 160 pounds and currently weigh 200, set every five-pound loss as a milestone. Upon reaching each milestone, reward yourself for your small victory, but not necessarily with a big bowl of nachos or a case of beer (although there’s nothing wrong with indulging here and there).
Similarly, don’t expect yourself to reach your goals quickly. Keep in mind that everyone moves at their own pace, and if you’re not losing weight or gaining muscle as fast as other people, that’s perfectly okay.
If you’re a new dad and now have little to no time for fitness, these tips can help you work with a new exercise regime and nutrition plan that will suit your current situation with a newborn. Remember that your kids deserve a healthy dad, so the best time to start getting fit is today.