using your buggy to get fit

8 reasons why using your buggy to get fit is the ultimate mum workout

Why is using your buggy to get fit the ultimate mum workout? Let us count the ways…


One of the great things about using your buggy to get fit is that you can do it from the time your baby is born. As it’s low impact exercise there is no need to wait until your body fully recovers. Take it very slowly and easily in the early weeks, and talk to your doctor at your 6-week postpartum check up about your routine and any exercise plans you may have for the coming months.


Getting outdoors and into the fresh air is a real endorphin boost. There are days that leaving the house can seem like an impossible task, but it’s almost always a better day when you do. Plus it doesn’t matter whether you are in the heart of the city or the wilds of the country – it’s the getting outside that counts. Even a ten-minute stroll around the block will shake off the cobwebs, put you in a better mood, and get your energy flowing again.



What other exercise allows you to grab a hot drink while powering through your workout? A hot coffee and perfect peace – it’s the Holy Grail.


As your routine begins to settle and you start getting out of the house more frequently (and with less stress!), then it’s time to up your distance. Now is a great stage to download a fitness app such as runkeeper. These apps track your distance, speed, route, calories and more. It’s a great way to see how you are progressing (and how many biscuits you’ve worked off that week..)


Ready to up the level again? Take in some hill walking. Pushing your buggy while taking on those hills is fantastic for calves, arms and even your core. Work it mama!


If you’re keen on building in some additional exercise to your daily walk then you can use your buggy as an exercise buddy. Doing squats while gently holding the handles at arms distance will really work those glutes and get your muscles pumping!


Another reason why walking with your buggy is the ultimate mum workout. Walking and talking with a friend is one of the best ways to not only increase your time and distance, but to up those good feelings too. You can even combine number 3 and go to a cafe when you’re done. We all need a little adult conversation sometimes – even if it’s only to discuss the plot lines of Big Little Lies, or to find out how to ease your baby’s constipation.



It’s free. It’s easy. You don’t need someone else to mind your baby while you do it.  And with the good weather on the way there are literally no excuses left!

So grab that buggy, slip into your trainers and enjoy!


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Q My son is 18 months old and has just started saying his first words. It is an extremely exciting time in our house and my husband and I are eager to encourage his speaking as much possible. What advice would you give us on how we can foster this without bombarding and confusing him?

AThere is nothing better than hearing your baby begin to talk. All the hard work you have put in over the last two years is coming back tenfold.
Toddlers will vary significantly with ability and speed of which they talk however a guide would be about 50 words by 2 years of age. The most important thing to watch for is that your baby/toddler is cooing and babbling and begins to string sounds together like “Mama/Dada” They should have a wide range of speech sounds and like to imitate you and things they hear.
There are many ways that you can promote Speech and Language development at home:
1. Slowing down your own speech and taking time over conversations with your little one. Every day is a new experience when you are 18 months, nappy changes, bath time, baking a cake brings endless opportunity for you to interact and offer new words for them to hear and repeat. Make eye contact, smile and use exaggerated tones to keep things interesting and fun for your tot.
2. Review the toys that you have on offer to your tot and ensure that they give plenty of open ended play opportunities. Role play is a wonderful way to allow children to take the lead. Kitchens with lots of plates, cups and pots. Fill the pots with dry pasta and allow your child to cook and serve you. Playdoh, painting, gardening and sandpits are also great for allowing your child to take the lead and babble about what they are doing. Read plenty of books together and point and allow them time to answer any questions that you ask.
3. Limit screen time. Overuse of televisions and iPads do not give your child opportunity to interact in a two way manner.
4. Ask your child lots of open ended questions “What’s that?” “Where are we?” Point at things they know the answer to for boosting confidence (Car/ Car, etc.) When they don’t know the answer, explain it to them. Limit baby talk and speak clearly with good pronunciation, remember you are the teacher and they will copy you.
If you are concerned about your child’s speech and language development, be sure to speak with your GP or developmental Health Nurse. They are very skilled at understanding the difference between speech delays and spotting something that may require professional attention.
Enjoy watching their little brains absorb the world around them and listen to what they have to say. It won’t be too long before they won’t stop talking to you, asking “Why Mummy/ Daddy?” every 5 minutes….


Ask Tracey

Midwife Tracey Donegan answers your questions about pregnancy and birth

Q When should I have my first pregnancy scan? And how many scans should I get throughout my pregnancy?

Your first scan is known as your dating scan and is routine in all hospitals. Most mums will have this scan at their booking visit, which can be anywhere between 12-18 weeks. The earlier the scan the more accurate it will be. If you have experienced recurrent miscarriages some hospitals will scan you earlier. Contact your antenatal clinic for more information. In Ireland, most women will have two scans in a healthy pregnancy – a dating scan and an anomaly scan at around 20 weeks. However, some units provide a dating scan only. Private scans are also available in most cities and many parents use these services for additional reassurance and to find out the sex of their baby.