When Piper was a few months old, I wrote a post about fitting in exercise with a baby (read HERE). When she was napping more throughout the day, yes, I could toooootally workout during one of those naps, but now she is almost 10 months old (HOW THE HECK DID THAT HAPPEN BTW?!?), she's napping much less and I need those nap times for work.
I don't like using my baby as an excuse for not taking care of myself. I coached far too many women who put themselves last for years and years, and then faced major health issues because of it. On an airplane, you're asked to first, put on your own oxygen max before helping those around you because what good are you if you're passed out haha. I always make it a priority to take care of my health because I am 100x more productive, happier, and healthier which means I can be a better caregiver to my family.
Some things that have helped me STILL fit in exercise with a little one are:
WAKE UP EARLY
I love, loooove working out first thing in the morning! It sets the tone for the day, and I always feel much more productive because of it. It's also very "freeing" knowing that I don't still have to get in a workout. I'm sure I will eventually be an early morning workout type of gal, but my husband works out early in the morning now, so I let him take this shift. If you find mustering up the energy to workout at night difficult, I'd try working out in the morning, before your baby sucks the energy out of you.
SAVE WORKOUT FOR THE END OF THE DAY
This is what I have been doing, and I'm diggin it! During most of my postpartum, I worked out 3-4x a week at home, and only 1-2x at the gym. Mostly just leg day, actually. Last month, I felt myself feeling a little "stuck" with my workouts, so I made a commitment to workout at the gym WHENEVER possible, and it's made such a difference. I LOVE the gym and I push myself more there, so this shift has really helped! Since Jordan works out early in the morning, I exercise after Piper goes down to bed, at 7pm. We usually eat dinner around 5:30-6:00pm, Jordan bathes Piper while I change into my workout gear (it helps me mentally prepare to exercise, so I don't talk myself out of it), and then I feed her, sing her a few songs, put her down to bed, and head straight to the gym. If you have the energy to exercise at night, DO IT!
INCORPORATE BABY INTO WORKOUT
Even though I made a goal to workout at the gym, some days it's just not possible. Jordan is a full-time student, and also works, so sometimes he has projects/homework/tests to do at night, and I can't leave for the gym. I've learned having a baby means you HAVE to be flexible with your plans, because there are always curveballs with them - sickness, restless nights, teething, etc. On days I can't make it to the gym, I STILL get in a workout by doing something at home. Piper loves working out with me, and thinks it's hilarious to watch me exercise (probably because I look like a big idiot 99% of the time). Squat with your baby! Do push ups/planks over them! Use them as a weight! Piper weights 20lbs now (have you SEEN her belly??)...so I definitely work up a sweat using her haha.
GYM CHILD WATCH
While I don't love the idea of not being with Piper, I do like that she gets to interact with other babies. I have only put her in my gyms day care twice because I struggle with major mum guilt, but this can be a great option for mums that need it! This is usually my very last resort, but I'm sure when I have multiple kids this will come in handy.