What can my wife and I do to get back in shape now that we have a baby?
February 25, 2010 10:35 AM   Subscribe

What can my wife and I do to get back in shape now that we have a baby? It should be unique and most importantly, fun!

For about a year we joined a climbing gym. We loved it, but it was too far from home and pretty expensive. I think we loved it so much because it was fun, challenging, non-competitive, and different from the normal gym routine.

We have a 4-month old. We should be able to, at the minimum, bring her and let her sleep in her car seat. We also have the backpack style baby carrier (baby is against your chest facing towards you or optionally away from you).

We live in Farmington Hills, Michigan; 20 minutes from Detroit. It is cold out, but we are not opposed to outdoor activities.

We do not have much disposable income right now.

We do have a gym membership, but both of us see the gym as a chore and we usually have to go alone because of baby. We could eliminate this expense (about $35/month for the both of us) to free up some cash for a new activity.

I like: mountain biking, snowboarding, running, biking, hiking
She likes: walking, swimming, biking, hiking, skiing

Biking/Hiking/Skiing/Snowboarding are out of the question at the moment because of baby/money/weather.

Somethings we are already aware of that you might suggest: sex, geocaching.

Thanks Hive!
posted by TheAnswer to Health & Fitness (15 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
If she is still breastfeeding, I'd be careful about exercise and milk production.

Personally, I'd just take baby for walks.
posted by k8t at 10:38 AM on February 25, 2010

Best answer: I would eliminate the gym to save the cash and invest in a Wii.

I personally have found the EA Sports Active a great program for getting fit that I actually ENJOY doing. It incorporates tennis, inline skating moves, basketball, resistance work (a resistance band comes with the game) and track moves to really get you moving.

My sister swears by Your Fitness Coach for the Wii.

My parents have enjoyed just the Wii original bowling, boxing and tennis on Wii Sports.

And of course, if you want to go all out you can get the Wii Fit with the whole balance board.

Plus, you can play games on it!
posted by misha at 10:41 AM on February 25, 2010

Best answer: the wii is great excercise. Have you thought about the machines that are basically just bicycle handles ?

Also whats wrong with walking ? Thats good. You can get a baby seat for your bikes so you can bring baby with you when it gets warmer.
posted by majortom1981 at 10:51 AM on February 25, 2010

Best answer: Seconding the Wii. I'd highly recommend Gold's Gym Cardio Workout, which is terrifically sweat-inducing and cheap.
posted by PhoBWanKenobi at 10:53 AM on February 25, 2010

When money and weather permit, the baby doesn't need to preclude outdoor things like biking, hiking, and skiing. Perhaps not for mountain biking, but a trailer would let you bike with your child. Hiking and skiing should be possible too. I was born in the summer, and my parents took me on my first camping trip (car camping, an hour's drive away from home) that fall. There are lots of pictures of infant-me in a pack on hikes (with a little umbrella for shade in the desert) or skiing.
posted by JiBB at 11:39 AM on February 25, 2010

Best answer: My sisters (v. outdoorsy types) both invested in one of those jogger-style strollers so that they could take the kidlets out for a run/walk/hike year round. They're a bit pricey, but if you get a good one it'll last you for years. And as the kid gets heavier, you'll be getting more of a workout pushing her!
posted by mandymanwasregistered at 12:12 PM on February 25, 2010 [1 favorite]

Best answer: My husband and I like the Wii, and we lucked into an apartment complex with a fitness room. Having been in Farmington... walking is always good in spring. You can do something similar by walking around malls or, better yet, find an indoor conservatory near you - this way walking plus pretty plus oxygen.
posted by medea42 at 12:22 PM on February 25, 2010

Due to some issues it was about 4 months post-partum that I started walking for exercise again. Most days it's baby anachronism in the (old and unfancy) pram but some days she's in a sling. Coming up to my winter again and I'll probably use the sling more, even though she's bigger, just for the shared body heat factor (and I'm healing up enough to start strengthening through that carrying weight).

I'd say walking now, even if it's inside. I'd love to trial out a Wii for fitness at some point as well.

I also have vivid memories of being on the back of my mother's bike in a child seat.
posted by geek anachronism at 1:07 PM on February 25, 2010

Best answer: Orienteering. We take the baby in a carrier, even when it's pretty cold. The easiest course is a mile or so and not terribly strenuous, and I could manage it 3/4 months after a C-section. (The course was my exercise; my husband carried the baby and did the course so he got more exercise than me doing the same thing.) There are increasing levels of difficulty.

http://www.us.orienteering.org/ to find your local group.
posted by Eyebrows McGee at 1:55 PM on February 25, 2010

Best answer: Definitely get a jogging stroller. My husband did marathon-length runs with our toddler in it, and I take our preschooler for long walks all the time. Ours is a Baby Jogger one, with large wheels, and I like it a lot. You can find various models on craigslist.
posted by The corpse in the library at 5:34 PM on February 25, 2010

Oh, I meant to say -- because of the large wheels, we can take the jogging stroller out in the snow. Get one with a bubble, bundle up the kid, and you're good to go.
posted by The corpse in the library at 5:36 PM on February 25, 2010

Best answer: Third and Fourth the Wii. Dance Dance Revolution is plain fun. So is Just Dance, which has the benefit of not requiring dance mats and the dances resemble cheesy and fun disco dancing. Punch Out and Don King Boxing are good workouts and you get to punch each other/virtual opponents. A new one is Walk It Out where the longer you walk, the more scenery and other distractions you can unlock. Wii Sports Resort has some games that will raise your heart rate too.
posted by cross_impact at 6:17 PM on February 25, 2010

My wife and I just started running and we have a 2 month old. She started us on a Couch to 5K workout. The issue has been finding time to go together. We found if we drive to a friends house and have them babysit for the 30-40 minutes we run/walk/jog that it works out. So far so good, and it dosnt cost us anything.
posted by NotSoSimple at 4:30 PM on February 26, 2010

Response by poster: We have a Wii! I had the mind set set than anything workout related needed the Balance Board. I refuse to spend money on another gadget. But it seems like there are some options that do not require the balance board.

Orienteering sounds fun! Seems like it may be a bit more challenging that Geocaching.

I am looking for a Jogging stroller on craigslist!

Thanks for the great ideas everyone!

posted by TheAnswer at 12:30 PM on March 2, 2010

Have a look through this list for a location near you (I am not familiar enough with your area to pick something out) and go Contradancing! You can dance while wearing the baby and people are happy to hold little ones as well. I have friends with 8 month old twins and a three year old and mom and dad each wear a baby and sometimes mom wears the 3 yo on her back as well!
posted by jvilter at 7:51 AM on March 3, 2010

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