The Mommy Challenge | Kristy Ardo
Having a child is certainly life changing, but that can often lead to things changing for the better. In Kristy Ardo’s case, having a child led to the unique career opportunity of fitness blogging. “After I had Tucker my whole life did a 180. I had to learn to do everything differently including working out. I started doing workouts at home/outside with Tucker and he absolutely loved it. He would laugh and giggle and it made it so enjoyable. It became a bonding experience! I started posting my videos and thus Baby Fit Gym was born. We are the role models for the next generation and it’s so important to show our kids how to lead a healthy life.”
Kristy grew up as an athletic child. She was particularly fond of water sports. She went on to become an NCAA D1 diver and later progressed into coaching and training. She eventually retired and opted that it was time to settle down and start a family. Just as any parent, she found that she couldn’t just return to her old routines. Instead of giving up on fitness completely, she made an adaptation. “Having a child totally changed my views. Before kids I spent over an hour working out at the gym I loved it! After Tucker I was no longer able to return to that same routine. I had a shift in my priorities, obviously being a mom took precedence over my fitness goals. After a big adjustment I learned to do quick efficient workouts with my son. You can still get in the same great workout at home with kids,” Kristy explains.
Discovering her new fitness regimen, Kristy wanted to show others how to make the same adjustment. “I show the world how to get quick efficient workouts done with their kids. Having a child changes your life in so many ways and this means your fitness routine also changes. I want to show parents that you can still go on adventures and be active with kids,” Kristy said. At this moment, Kristy went on to create videos of her at home workout routines. They became a hit!
Kristy not only has some great workout plans, but she also offers great advice to mothers looking to get fit. She understands the unique challenges that come along with being a mother. “The pure exhaustion from being a mother is very real. There are so many sleepless nights and you always put your baby first. This means as a mom you shift to the back burner. It can be so easy to just give up on your health,” Kristy says. However, she stresses the fact that it doesn’t have to be that way. You can be a mother and still have your fitness as well. Her videos demonstrate how a simple workout plan at home can help you stay fit and give you a way to bond with your children. Another plus side is the fact that working out alongside your children can also encourage them to lead healthy lifestyles in the future. “The most rewarding part has been experiencing everything with my boys. I worked out with both of them as babies and watching them grow and learn to do exercises is just so cute! They love participating and its pure joy,” Kristy says.
So the real challenge of motherhood is not giving up the things that you love, but to create new means of doing them and share the process with your children along the way! “Mindset is everything. I tend to be an ALL or NOTHING person. If I know I can’t get a full workout in, it use to prevent me from even starting. With kids you HAVE to change your mindset! You have to be flexible and creative! Change your mind- 15 minutes is all you need!”
What three pieces of fitness equipment should everyone have?
Resistance loop bands, dumbbells, suspension system
In your opinion, what are the most overrated and underrated exercises?
Most ab exercises I think are overrated. You don’t get abs from doing abs. Abs are made in the kitchen. If you work out properly every exercise should be working your abs 😉
Not sure if its underrated but freaking squats!!! I LOVE squatting. I love squatting heavy weight and all different types of bodyweight squat variations. Booty gains!
What motivational/inspirational books have you found to be most helpful?
I haven’t had time to read a good inspirational book for a while. But what really does motivate me is seeing other people being and active and reaching their fitness goals. It makes me want to be better and gives me an extra pump!
What are your go-to snacks when you’re on the run?
I absolutely love beef jerky! I also love pistachios and ahi tuna 🙂
What’s your belief on performance diet like? Do you prescribe to a particular philosophy on diet (example: Paleo, Gluten free, etc…)?
I have been gluten free for 16 years because I have celiac disease. However I do believe in eating a high fat high protein diet and cutting down on sugars/carbs/grains. I follow a modified paleo diet. I stay away from processed foods and try to eat clean whole foods.