Did you promise yourself you would get fit this year? But you’re already finding it tough to squeeze in all those spin classes you said you’d go to? Sam Wood says step one is to give yourself a break…

Being a parent is tough – we all know that. Between lunchbox packing, before and after-school activities, homework and the million and one other things you need to stay on top of – not to mention your own personal responsibilities – finding the time to exercise regularly seems, well, impossible.

The good news? You’re not alone in feeling like this. Former ‘The Bachelor’ reality TV star and celebrity personal trainer Sam Wood knows all about it…

“I think parents find it hard to exercise regularly because, when you’re a parent, there’s nothing regular about it,” says Sam. “It’s a real challenge.”

As challenging as fitting regular exercise into your already overflowing schedule may be, Sam admits that it’s absolutely critical to find the time to do it if you want to lead a happy, healthy life.

“Having a healthy balance of nutrition, movement and mindfulness will help you feel your best,” says Sam. “The benefits of regular exercise go well beyond the physical.”

In Sam’s line of work – which sees him train hundreds of busy mums and dads, among his other clients – he, of course, hears about weight loss, increased energy and strength all the time. But what his clients also tell him is that they’re sleeping better, feeling more confident and have greater self-esteem since starting a regular exercise program. Healthy? Check. Happy? Check.

Enough with the ‘why’, you’re probably thinking. Tell me ‘how’!

“In a perfect world we would move our bodies every day but we don’t live in a perfect world so it really is a matter of doing what you can, when you can,” says Sam. “My best advice is to keep your workouts short but effective and do them at home for consistency and best results.”

A bodyweight circuit at home is the perfect place to start – you don’t need equipment, just start with seven minutes of movement and work your way up from there.

When it comes to what you do, variety is key. Mix things up with HIIT, some form of yoga and Pilates (there are plenty of free programs and videos out there) and steady state cardio, like a long walk, jog or bike ride.

“The key is to set a 28-day goal. When you look too far ahead, you lose your way – work in smaller 28-day blocks and you’ll be smashing your 2019 goals before you know it,” says Sam. “The important thing is to not overthink it. Stressing ourselves out being embarrassed or frustrated is not going to help us get to where we need to get to. One workout at a time, one day at a time. It’s all about action.”

Start slowly and be consistent, but also be patient. Your body may not be able to do what it used to right now but don’t worry – it will again.

“Just remember,” Sam says. “Something is always better than nothing.”


Your seven-minute workout
30 seconds work, 10 seconds rest

  • Jumping jacks
  • Wall sit
  • Push-ups
  • Abdominal crunches
  • Step-up (onto a chair or step)
  • Triceps dips (on a chair, couch or table)
  • Plank
  • High knees, running in place
  • Alternating lunges
  • Push-ups with rotation (lift one arm to the sky, turning your chest)
  • Side plank, each side

Healthy helpers: apps to get you moving!

  • Couch to 5k Runner
  • Strava Training: Run and Ride
  • Nike Training Club
  • Fitocracy
  • Workout Trainer


haven is all about family, life and style in Brisbane's inner city suburbs, the Gold Coast, south to Byron Bay. We have been keeping parents in the know for over eight years, with fun, fresh and helpful stories that they can take tips from or treasure in their own library.