Having a child completely takes over your existence. Although it is an incredibly joyous experience and the start of a new phase of your life, it is overwhelming and stressful. You spend every hour of the day caring for your newborn or in a state of utter exhaustion. Of course fitness is the last thing on your mind.

Caucasian pre-teen boy throwing football to mid-adult male.

But it’s more important than ever to look after your body. If you aren’t taking care of yourself, you’re not in the best position to take care of your newborn baby. You need to make an effort to get some exercise and watch your diet.

You may be wondering where on earth you will find the time in your schedule to go for a run or hit the gym, but it is perfectly possible. You just have to be smart with your time and a little creative to make it work. To help you on your fitness journey, here are four tips for new dads to keep fit.

Show up

You have a lot on your plate. You can’t expect to reach peak fitness in the months following a new child. But it’s the consistency of your workouts that is important, not the intensity. Just making the effort to go for a gentle run or have a short workout is what matters. It builds good habits that will become a part of your routine over time. You just need to keep showing up and making the effort. 

Use your downtime

Children can take up a lot of your energy, but they still need their downtime too. When your little one is quietly sleeping, use that as an opportunity to fit in a quick workout. You may not be able to leave the house if you are looking after them, but you can certainly fit in a quick dumbbell or pilates session in the other room.

Always be ready

You probably aren’t able to schedule workouts into your diary, as things will always come up that mean you have to change your plans. But if you make sure you are always ready to exercise when the opportunity arises, you will be able to maximize your fitness journey and get as much activity in as possible. If you’re a runner, always have your trainers by the front door and a fresh set of shorts ready to go. If you’re a cyclist, make sure your bike is maintained and in good condition. You don’t want to be fiddling with inner tubes and ceramic bearings in that small window of time you have to get outside. You may have to be flexible and creative with your workouts, but if you are committed you can make it happen.

Set a goal

What is your aim when it comes to your fitness? Do you want to run a marathon, or bench press a certain weight? Maybe you want to lose weight or feel more confident in your body. Whatever it may be, you need to have a clear objective in sight. This will help you to keep focused and motivated, even when life may be overwhelming. Just keep at it, and you will get there in the end.

, 4 Tips For Keeping Fit as a New Dad, Days of a Domestic Dad