Working mothers face tremendous challenges when it comes to exercise. They can find themselves short on time, energy, and stamina. New mothers, in particular, may find it difficult to attend to their own fitness needs. However, it is entirely possible for working moms to achieve their fitness goals. All it takes is a little bit of creativity and a great deal of commitment.

First of all, working mothers must give themselves permission to exercise. They may be so busy trying to please their spouses, children, and bosses that they feel as if they don’t deserve to devote time to themselves. However, trying to be all things to all people–without taking time to safeguard one’s health–can lead to disaster. Working mothers must recognize the fact that they need to be fit in order to take care of all of their other obligations. Exercise can also help them to keep sickness and injury at bay, so that they can remain healthy over the long term.

Next, working mothers need to make a commitment to exercise. In other words, they need to make it a priority in their lives. If they don’t, they may find that too many other things stand in their way of exercising–shopping, preparing meals, getting ready for work, carpooling, and the like. They must, in a sense, make an appointment with themselves to exercise.

One of the ways to ensure that exercise is a part of a working mother’s daily routine is to take an exercise class. If you invest money in a class, you’re more likely to keep your commitment to exercise. The class can consist of aerobics, aqua-aerobics, kickboxing, modern dance–whatever appeals to you. You can take the class during your lunch break, while your children are in day care or in school. Or you might be able to squeeze in a class before work, after you drop your children off for the day. Making time for an exercise class may take a bit of schedule-shuffling, but it is well worth the effort.

If you are a new mother, you might also consider a “Mommy and Me” exercise class. These classes allow mothers to exercise with their infants. These programs fulfill a variety of functions. They can help you shed unwanted “baby weight.” They can also make it easier for you to bond with your baby. In addition, they can introduce you to other mothers who are facing the same kinds of struggles as you are. You might check with your local YMCA or YWCA to find out if there are such classes in your area.

Some working mothers also squeeze in exercise by organizing family walks. You can walk around your neighborhood while pushing a baby stroller, or encourage your school-age children to walk with you. If you keep a brisk pace, walking can be an incredibly beneficial form of exercise. You might also try walking with another working mother while your children are at their grandparents’ house or at the babysitter’s.

Working mothers face tremendous demands, both at home and on the job. Therefore, it is important that they keep fitness in the forefront to help increase their staying power. With planning and dedication, working mothers can find the exercise program that works for them.

Ray Kelly is an Exercise Scientist with 15 years experience in the health and fitness industry. Sign up for his Free Exercise and Meal Planner at The Biggest Loser or

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It is a fact that not everyone requires the same amount of sustenance to get through the day. There are many factors that determine your own caloric needs and they will be greatly different from the caloric needs of your friends and family members. When you discover the amount of calories your body needs, you can manage your weight and reach your health goals.
Your Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR). Everyone’s caloric needs will be slightly different from those of other people. You will need to use the Harris-Benedict principle also known as Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR) to figure out how many calories you burn on any given day. Basic bodily functions like breathing use up around 60% of daily caloric needs. The balance is used up by simple movements like walking to and from your desk at work.
A different formula is used to calculate BMR for women and men.

For women: 655 + (4.3 x your weight in pounds) + (4.7 x your height in inches) – (4.7 x years of age).
For men: 66 + (6.3 x your weight in pounds) + (12.9 x your height in inches) – (6.8 x your years of age).

Please note: 1 inch = 2.54 cm, and 1 kg = 2.2 pounds

With the above formula and your own details inserted, you should end up with a number between 1200 and 2000. This number will be the number of calories your body needs daily to maintain your weight – this assumes that no exercise is done.

Daily activity. It is important to take into account any daily activity when working out your caloric needs. Greater levels of physical activity will burn more calories than being less active. If you just want to maintain your current weight, you need to work out the number calories burned when exercising so that you can add it to your daily caloric needs.
The guide below gives a rough idea according to your lifestyle:

Sedentary (non-active) lifestyle: BMR x 20%
Light activity: BMR x 30%
Moderate activity: BMR x 40%
Very active: BMR x 50%
Extremely active: BMR x 60%

Just as a guide, moderate activity means exercising nearly every day; very active is exercising intensely every day; athletes and those who do manual work are put in the extremely active category.
Total your daily activity and BMR together. Once you have got your BMR and your daily exercise amount, sum the two figures together. The number you get will be the number of calories you may consume every to maintain the weight you are right now.

Therefore simple eat fewer calories than your daily caloric intake requires if you want to reduce your weight – but 1200 calories per day is the minimum you have to consume). In contrast, the addition of a few hundred calories to your diet daily will help you achieve a weight gain.

Tiffany Provost writes about calorie and health tips for