Tapping Your Superpower: Workout Tips for Exhausted Parents

Last week we moved the baby out of our room and into her crib. It doesn’t seem like the location would make any kind of difference on the sleep, but apparently she knew she wasn’t in the confines of the master bedroom and decided to make it known. She was up about every two hours, which reminded me of the time she was just born. Come on sister, you’ve been alive for 6 months, you KNOW how to sleep…trust me. Sometimes they just don’t remember. Also she had a tooth coming in. Also she was a little backed up. All not conducive for a good night’s sleep…

So how do you function the next day after being up all night and then up early with the other kids? All moms and dads know the answer to this…you just do. It’s a power that parents have to keep your house functioning and your kids alive, even when you are on zero hours of sleep.

But what is even MORE amazing is when parents tap into their SUPERpower. This is the ability to exercise and be active when exhaustion has become their middle name. I’m going to share a few tips that I use to fit in that workout…even when lifting my eyelids seems impossible!

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Drink water

I bet you thought I was going to say drink coffee (which you could also do and it would be awesome), but water is key. Hydrating yourself can increase the flow of oxygen to your body, which will make you feel more awake, alert, and ready for activity.


Eat Energy Food

Eating certain foods can give you an extra energy boost if you need it in the day.

  • Eggs, almonds, and Greek yogurt revitalize your body by providing a good source of protein
  • Apples, oranges, and bananas are go-to fruits for improving energy with natural sugars and vitamins
  • Sweet potatoes and brown rice are good carbs that your body will use to create and maintain energy throughout the day




Stretching will gently wake up the muscles by increasing blood flow. A few simple moves can invigorate the body, release endorphins, and renew energy! Additionally, stretching is a great way to improve flexibility, range of motion, and relieve pressure on joints. And hey, if stretching is all you can muster then you’ll burn about 50 calories stretching for ten minutes!


Low Impact

If stretching has pushed you to do a little extra activity, you can opt for low impact or static activity.

  • Ab workout
  • Yoga (not the crazy hard kind)
  • Stationary bike
  • Tai Chi

These activities are great workout options when you have don’t have the energy for high impact activity. Make sure you ENGAGE your muscles with these types of workouts to get the best out of your workout.


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I’ve noticed on my most tired days when I don’t want to do ANYTHING and I force myself to start running…the results are amazing. I usually start really slow and feel really lethargic, like I’m trudging through cement. Then something incredible happens…my brain and my body start to leave that exhaustion in the dust…and I become…SUPER MOM! Running not only burns calories and strengthens your body, but it rejuvenates your mind, relieves stress, and improves your overall health!



Sometimes it’s ok to just give in to the tired. If you are lucky enough to get a break (or get a babysitter) take a quick power nap to recharge those drained batteries. Sleep is so important for brain and body recovery…and obviously we don’t get enough of it!

The cool thing is that these tips will work even if you aren’t a parent. I remember late nights with friends, and early mornings in the office…these tips would work for those instances too!


How do you get energy to work out when you’re burning the candle at both ends?!


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14 thoughts on “Tapping Your Superpower: Workout Tips for Exhausted Parents

  1. Great post. I often feel so exhausted and wonder where the day has gone. I’ve been trying to get back on top of things since having our youngest (now three months old). So many of these options should be so obvious, but I’ve let my mind get so bogged down with busy-ness that I never stop to actually do them. Guess if I plan on keeping up with my three boys I need to get it together! 😉

    1. I totally feel you! Stretching could be done ANYWHERE, and I often find myself skipping it after workouts because I am tired and busy…little did I know it could HELP with the tired (not so much the busy ;))! I’ll be working on making sure I do more of these things too!

  2. I drink water and stretch when I need to wake up, but my favorite thing to do when tired is to dance. Family dance party does it everytime!

  3. Ahhhhh I so needed this! I’m constantly using my exhaustion as an excuse not to get up and get my body moving. I needed this reminder that that’s not an excuse! Thank you for sharing.

    1. I’ve definitely used exhaustion as an excuse, it’s really hard to get moving some days…glad these steps can help!

  4. Great advice! I need to fit in some workouts daily. I do try to walk 3-4 times a week but lately the weather hasn’t been cooperating! And I needed a reminder to drink more water!

    1. Walking is amazing exercise! I actually just got back from one…and it was luxurious! The weather can really put a damper in things…that is when I like to walk at the mall or Target, also good energy…its just hard not to buy all the things! Good luck with adding in some daily workouts…and I think I might do a post about how to drink more water…I’m soooo bad about it, too!

    1. LOL…Yes, tomorrow sounds great! I consistently battle with myself about starting to workout. Morning workouts are where it’s at! I’m not as good at convincing myself to workout in the afternoon. My afternoons are full of excuses based on how my day is going!

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