How Working Parents Balance It All: Part II

Welcome to part two of our three-part blog series! For this feature, we reached out to five working parents who amaze us. They answered questions and offered introspective remarks which serve to inspire us to be our best selves, even when it seems like there’s no “me” time left in the day.


What advice would you would offer someone who is struggling to fit workouts into their busy routine?

Mike York: “The morning classes are great for someone with busy days, and lunch classes are only 45 minutes. If I do the 8 AM church service on Sunday, I can just make the 9:30 AM class.”

Carley Heinz: “You really have to WANT IT.If you want it, it can happen. Look over your schedule and see what times you are less busy and find a class during that time. Start with setting your goals where you can be successful which may be one to two classes a week and as you start achieving that goal, add another class. Once you start achieving your goals it will boost your motivation to keep achieving but if you start too high you are setting yourself up for failure.”

Jen Thayer: “You have to make yourself a priority. It’s one hour a day. For me, that one hour is for both my mental and physical well-being.My husband says he’s noticed what a positive impact it has had on me and our family time, so he encourages me to get to CKO, even when there’s a ton going on at home. There are some weeks, I am on it and I can get to multiple workouts and there are weeks when being a mom or work activities keep me from getting to CKO. I have to be kind to myself about that. It’s all about balance.  I want to be there for my girls now and later in life and that means I have to take care of myself each and every day.”

Marielle Shuster: “Be realistic!  Set attainable goals. Find a workout buddy!  Schedule it, put it in your phone, or write it down in your calendar. I plan my workouts for the week every Sunday night. If I cannot make it to a class, I schedule what I am going to do on my own whether it is a 10-minute walk or an online class in my home gym.”

Jen Herring: “You have to commit that time to yourself and make it a priority. It isn’t always easy!  Plan ahead and make it a non-negotiable appointment in your day. Do not let anything knock it off your schedule and do not flake out on yourself. Some days you might need to modify and take it a little easy, but do not give up. Leave your ego at the door and stop comparing yourself to the person next to you.”


Why is it important to fit fitness into your life?

Mike York: “I travel via car a lot for work. Sometimes a 6-7-hour drive. In my 40’s I noticed that as my core disintegrated, the mechanical back problems really increased.  Especially after long periods of sitting, my hips would be twisted and stuck. That has gone away since I started at CKO 4 months ago. I’m liking how I look in pictures again and walk with a whole new posture. My father biked a few week-long bike rides with me in his 60’s. I’d like to do the same for my 8-year-old twins.”

Carley Heinz: “I want to be healthy (doesn’t everyone!). I feel it’s important not just for my physical health but my mental health as well. When I am eating well and working out, I feel great all around! It is also important for our kids to see fitness is part of life, so we are setting them up to live a healthy life.”

Jen Thayer: “I want to be a healthy example for my children and my students. I love to work out and I wish I had more time in my day to exercise or do various fitness activities like I do in the summer months. Finding time has always been the challenge for me because I always put everyone else ahead of myself, and now I’m learning to put myself first. Even at school we will do plank and squat challenges when I see the kids need a brain break. I make the students compete against me for who can stay at it the longest.  I try to do fun Friday activities that involve health and I will play workout videos. We have fun with that together. At home, I walk a lot with my girls or walk with them while they ride their bikes or scooters.”

Marielle Shuster: “I come from a family of heart disease, I had a breast cancer scare and started having panic attacks I realized the stress of owning a business and trying to do everything a stay at home wife/mom would do was too much to handle. I needed a way to release and to take care of myself if I was going to be able to take care of others. Plus, I was not getting any younger and my kids were watching everything I did.  I decided to make a change!  It was to BEST thing I have ever done. I am healthier now than I ever was in my 20’s.”

Jen Herring: “I got serious about working out and making healthier lifestyle choices after having my children. You get one body, that’s it. Taking care of it is the most important thing you can do. I want to be there for my children, so I have to take care of myself the best I can.”


Stay tuned for the final part in this three-part blog series. In the meantime, are you interested in attending a CKO class? Click Here to sign up today!

Stephanie, Health & Fitness Enthusiast