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Many people with demanding schedules find it hard to get themselves to the gym on a regular basis. However, you shouldn’t let your fitness fall by the wayside, especially as a mom with many physical demands. There are plenty of ways you can exercise that don’t involve going to the gym. They save you time commuting to and from the gym, as well as the money that it costs every month to belong to one. Here are a few ideas of ways to get your heart rate up without setting foot in a gym.


Getting your cardio in is one of the easiest ways to exercise without a gym. The only equipment you need is some running shoes and maybe a water bottle. Some people buy their own cardio equipment to have in their homes which is great, but it’s arguably better to just go outside and get a run in. Running outside is more challenging to the body than running on a treadmill, so you get a better workout. It also makes you more likely to complete your distance goals because you can’t just convince yourself to hop off and quit like you can with a treadmill. The time spent out in the fresh air and in nature gives an extra mood boost and has a more relaxing effect.

Dumbbell Set

A simple dumbbell set in various weights can be purchased at any sporting goods store or big box store. Having your own dumbbells essentially makes the gym come to you. You can get all the workouts in that you would at the gym, but you don’t actually have to be there. You really don’t need the machines the gym provides, as these are mainly there to mimic the movements that can be done with dumbbells. Use them for tricep extensions, bicep curls, or hold them as you do lunges and squats for added difficulty.

Bodyweight Exercises

You really don’t need gym equipment to get a good muscle-building workout in. All you need is a good bodyweight routine. You will be surprised by how easy it is to get your muscles burning. Try this routine: 10 lunges with each leg, 10 push-ups, 15 body squats, 25 jumping jacks, 20 second plank, 10 jump squats. After that, give yourself a short break, and do the set one more time. See if you are able to improve on your time with each attempt, or start to add another round to the end.


Stretching is an underrated form of fitness that most people don’t do enough of. You can adopt a stretching routine to do at home when you are done exercising. Doing so will reduce muscle tension, give you more energy, improve your circulation, and give you more coordination.

Core Exercises

Most exercises for your abdominal muscles/core are designed to be done with no machines or added weights. Doing planks (holding your body in push-up position) or plank variations (alternating moving your legs out to the side then back in, or planking on your side, with one hand on the ground and one in the sky) is a great way to strengthen your core without any equipment. Additionally, sit-ups and leg raises (lying on back with legs straight out on the ground, lift them together without bending and then slowly lower) hit other core muscles.


There are lots of yoga routines on Youtube and other websites that allow you to do it on your own time and in the privacy of your home! Yoga can be used to increase flexibility, balance, build strength, and relax. The great thing about yoga is that beginners can dive into it very easily. If you have an interest in doing it, you can. You will be surprised by how quickly you gain strength and how nice it is to de-stress.

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