How to Stay Healthy as a New Parent
Priorities shift in a major way the day you become a new parent. Regular sleeping, eating, and workout habits tend to fly out the window to work around the newborn’s schedule. This can last for weeks or even months while the baby and new parent acclimate to each other’s routines. However, it doesn’t mean that all healthy habits have to be derailed completely. Now more than ever is an important time for you, as a parent, to maintain a strong immune system and dedicated wellness plan. Fuel Yourself with Good Food Being a new parent can seem hectic to say the least, but there are ways to stay healthy amidst the chaos. Healthy eating choices are best done when prepared in advance. Chopping up fruit, portioning out almonds, or having yogurt on hand to quickly grab for a snack is better than reaching for whatever food is nearby in a pinch. When the baby naps or plays nearby, prepare a few make-ahead meals to store in the freezer or prepare for the week ahead. Salads, sandwiches, and a quick mix of rice and veggies are healthy options that don’t require a lot of time. Maintaining these healthy habits will make it easier to pass along to your little one as well. Plan Daily Exercise There are days when exercise might be the last thing on your mind with all you have to juggle, but you can always sneak in shorter bursts of exercise, if you can’t yet commit to a consecutive 30 minutes or longer. Go for a morning walk with your baby in the stroller. Do an exercise video at home. Or, request a family member or friend to stay with the baby for an hour, so you can hit the gym for a workout. Keeping active during the day will also help with staying healthy, but make sure you have planned time for yourself to lift weights, take a class, or spend time on the treadmill. Decompress and De-Stress As soon as you wake up, your mind and body may go into autopilot, moving quickly from one task to another. This hectic pace can eventually catch up with you causing stress. Take a few minutes at the end of the day to meditate, read a few chapters of a book, or catch up on a guilty pleasure tv show to give your mind and body a chance to de-stress. Every so often schedule some “me” time to get a massage, unplug from any electronics, and take a “timeout” to relax and recharge. This will put you in a better state of mind to be a better parent for your child. New parents definitely need all the rest they can get! Life with a newborn can seem overwhelming in the beginning. It’s uncharted territory to navigate, but the journey is well worth it. It’s important to take care of yourself as much as possible to ensure you have the physical and mental energy to be the kind of parent you wish to be. Staying healthy is good not only for you, but for your whole family as well.
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