As previously noted, Stay-At-Home Writer/Dads are at particularly acute risk of contracting Saturday Malaise. Also noted, staying home with children can be frustrating. Working out is a good way of staving off frustration. Additionally noted, like it or not, your mental adroitness and creativity are inexorably linked to your physical well-being. Ergo, you need to exercise.
Here are some workout tips for the Stay-At-Home Writer/Dad:
Tip 1. Walk and Roll…
Slap on some sunscreen and take your kid for a walk. Taquito and I usually walk about 40 minutes a day around the perimeter of a nearby shopping complex. This is good because it gets both of you out of the house, exposes your child to a world greater than your home, and gives you the opportunity to interact with other people.
Interesting fact: researchers have found that if you take a minimum of 10,000 steps in a day and cut back your calorie consumption by about a third you will lose weight. Learn more.
Our daily walk takes about 5,000 – 6,000 steps. On days when I neither walk nor run, I average about 500 steps. There are decent smartphone apps that will count your steps for you. Or you can buy a fancy pedometer from a running store.
Tip 2. Run Fast For Your Mother…
I don’t necessarily enjoy running, but I try to put in a few miles every couple days. I find it helps if I am working toward a goal. Every year I run a half marathon to raise money for clean water projects in Africa, and the rest of the time try to stay in decent enough shape so I don’t die when the next race rolls around. Set a distance goal, find a running plan to get you to that distance, and plug away a day at a time. Running three miles after my daily walk brings me to 10,000 steps.
Research shows that running carpet-bombs your brain with endorphins. As a result your general sense of well-being improves drastically. Runner’s high is the real deal. Read more.
This is extremely helpful for days your children and/or your writing career are causing you existential crisis.
Tip 3. Pull Your Own Weight
It’s rumored that Secret Service agents who travel with the president have developed a rigorous workout routine designed specifically for hotel rooms. Essentially, basic pieces of furniture can be used to leverage your own body weight and keep you in shape (so long as you exercise caution in selecting them). Obvious examples include: bench dips, pull-ups, elevated pushups, sit ups, and others. There are plenty of exercises that don’t require any equipment at all (like this lady). Of course, if you have your own weights, treadmill, or Olympic-Sized bobsled run, more power to you.
Tip 4. Toddler Resistance Training
It’s probably goofy to even mention this, but throwing your kid in the air can do great work for your arms and lower back. Anyone who carries a child around for a long time every day knows how much it can wear you out. Chasing a kid around can be decent cardio too. Just be careful. If your hands are too sweaty, or you aren’t sure of yourself, don’t be an idiot and throw someone you can’t catch.
Tip 5. If You Want to Get All Fancy
You can of course, go the conventional route and get a gym membership or some such thing. If you’ve got the spare capital, more power to you. I’m kind of a tightwad when it comes to this sort of stuff, so I say if I can get the same or similar results for free, then why bother?
In the end, it’s important that you get out of the house and get moving. Burn off that angst. This will make you a better writer and a better dad. Also, if you liked this post, go ahead and click the +FOLLOW button on the bottom right of your screen. Thanks!