Love It or You'll Leave It
The next step is to find a type of exercise that puts a smile on your face. We're talking about something you really look forward to, so you'll always clear your schedule to make it happen. If Tuesdays are busy for you, and you only have time to power-walk, turn it into a date to catch up with a friend. That means you've got to call her a week or so in advance to set things up, but you'll have so much more fun if you do. No friends available? Bring your cell phone and connect with someone while you hustle around the block. Or bring headphones and catch up on the news or walk to the beat of your favorite songs. No matter what you do, make it fun and you'll be more likely to do it again.
Keep It Fresh
Try something new like an exercise/dance class. You may feel self-conscious at first, but you may fall in love with it like millions of women already have.
Get a bike. It doesn't have to be fancy or high tech. Just get a regular old bike at a sporting goods store or garage sale. Hop on and take off. Explore your area. Discover streets you've never been down. Go fast. Feel the wind on your face and the sun on your arms. Get away from it all.
Join a team. It may have been a decade or more since you were part of a sports team, but there's one in your area looking for a player. Check with your local churches and recreation centers for co-ed softball, soccer, or volleyball teams. Join a walking club, drop into a running or cycling group, or call your sporting goods stores about hiking organizations.
Your group of exercise buddies is out there, so go find them. (Check local listings online for all of the above!)
Arrange for Childcare
If you belong to a gym that has on-site childcare, you're good to go. If not, ask a friend or neighbor for a childcare swap arrangement. You take care of her children while she exercises, then she returns the favor. Or arrange for neighborhood teenager to watch your kiddos while you ride your bike, go for a jog, or drop by the gym every afternoon. Paying for a babysitter may be less expensive than gym membership, and you don't have to pack up and haul your entire crew every time you want to take a water aerobics class. If your parents live nearby, use them! They'll love the regular time with their grandbabies and you'll love the break to do something for yourself. No matter how you make it work, just do it!