why it rocks to be a work at home mom
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10 Reasons why it Rocks to Be a Work at Home Mom

Recently, we’ve seen a rise in terminologies such as mom boss, mompreneur, and work at home mom.  All these describe a mother who earns money doing what she loves from the comfort of her home. That means her home is her office, from where she operates her money-making business.

The mamas herein are not telecommuting – that is to say they are not employees working for employers from home or desired remote locations, they are work from home moms who are working for themselves running their own businesses from home.

The number of people who work from home is on the rise according to statistics by Global Workplace Analytics and FlexJobs. It has it that remote work grew 44% in the last five years and 91% over the last 10 years. Likewise, the number of stay at home moms currently stands at 29%,4 an increase of 6% from 1999.

Work from home opportunities abound, both on and offline. What you choose to do is based on your passion, opportunity, circumstance, income, age, location, and state of health. What is most important is that you are running your business from home while still carrying out your mom’s duties.

Not everyone is cut out to be a WAHM, 71% of moms still work outside the home, but for those who are, they agree the advantages outweigh the disadvantages.

Reasons why it rocks to be a Work At Home Mom, are

You Are Involved In Raising Your Children

Studies have found that children who spend more time with their parents in their formative years are more stable and productive as adults. Two studies from the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development and the Institute of Child Development of the University of Minnesota showed that children who spend most of their child at home with parents are less aggressive when compared to children who spend most of their time away in daycare. Being a work from home mom affords you the opportunity to spend more time with your children, to be more involved in their upbringing. You are able to groom your children your way, help them form healthy habits, and increase their self-esteem.

10 Reasons Why It Rocks to Be a Work At Home Mom

You Participate In Co-curricular Activities with the Children

As a Work At Home Mom, you have the time to attend your children’s Co-curricular activities. Being present at these activities boosts young one’s performance, knowing their parents are cheering them up from the sidelines. They are more confident and tend to get better results. It also forms cherished childhood memories that your children carry into adulthood. Attending these activities with your children also fosters bonding. The children share their thoughts, activities, associations, success, and challenges with you to and from the games.

Saves cost: daycare, commuting, clothes.

With the rising cost of living, being a WAHM saves costs. You save on daycare for the children, cost of school fees, and supplies, commuting to and from school or daycare,. By working at home, you save on the cost of commuting to and from work, save the cost of anxiety brought on by the frenzy of getting prepared for work and catching the bus, traffic, getting to work on time. It saves you the cost of purchasing high-end office clothes. You must appear neat and well-groomed to work on a daily basis and clothes cost money. As a WAHM, you don’t need to follow fashion trends as it comes and goes.

Puts You In Charge Of Your Home

Every woman wants to be and feel in charge of her home. From running the home to caring for the children and your husband, you love to be in charge. Working from home makes this a reality. You are aware of the administration of every aspect of your home even as you work to bring in additional income.

Eliminates Fear of Child Safety

We live in a world where safety is of grave concern. Society is getting more unsafe every day with children being abducted, some from home, parks, or to and from school. The safety of children while at play in the home is also a matter of concern.  (source). As a work at home mom, you see and monitor your children’s activities to ensure they are safe. The children also feel safer and secure with both or either of their parents than caregivers. Footages of caregivers assaulting their wards abound, some go as far as sexually assaulting the children they are paid to care for. The possibility of your child being molested by a caregiver, visitor, or sibling is reduced when you work at home.

Job Security

In America today. — No of people lose their jobs on a daily basis. There is a growing fear of job security and no assurance of security either. As a WAHM, you are your own boss. Nobody hires or fires you/ you only need to be motivated to do your work and achieve results.  You are not bugged by the thoughts of not meeting a boss’s deadline, not making it to the office on time, you manage your own time, resume and close when you deem fit. You chose your work hours and are not scared of losing your job.

You Are Your Own Time Manager

Time is every mother’s best friend and enemy, something you can never get enough of. When you work from home, you assign your own tasks, set deadlines, and schedule your work around chores, errands, children, partners, and other activities. You decide your work hours and are not answerable to anybody. This is one of the highpoints of working from home.

Reduces Job-Related Stress

Regular 9-5 jobs are stressful. You face the stress of getting ready and getting to work on time. The stress of the job, your colleagues, boss, commuting to work, traffic jam, all combine to stress the life out of you. Work-related stress amounts to —% of long term illnesses such as high blood pressure, —(source). Working from home is not 100% stress-free but since you set your own work hours and daily scope of work, the stress is highly minimized.

Unlimited Earning Potentials

Your earning potentials as a work at home mother are unlimited. The limit is determined by you: what you do, how committed you are to seeing it succeed, and the strategies you use. It is unlike salaried jobs where you receive a particular amount weekly or monthly. You could run multiple businesses or do more than one thing as a work from home mom. For example, you may be running a homemade pastries business while also running an e-commerce shop. The earning potentials are unlimited.

Unleashes your creativity and potentials.

Working from home unleashes your potentials. Being your own boss and sole determinant of your income, you get creative, trying to find better ways of doing a particular thing, finding ways of increasing your income, and being the best at what you do. It helps expand your mind, which affects your productivity.

Fitness

PANTING AFTER TAKING THE STAIRS?

4 Top Reasons and What to Do About It.

Do you find yourself panting for breath, winded or short of breath after climbing up a flight of stairs? Not to worry, it happens to everyone, fit or not. It should not come as a surprise if you do not exercise regularly but if you exercise regularly, you may be wondering why you are short of breath after taking the stairs. Going up the stairs is a vertical exercise. Although of lower impact than running, stairs climbing is more tasking because you are lifting up your body against gravity, applying pressure on your lower body. It burns calories faster than running and walking depending on the intensity. It raises your heart rate quickly, making your lungs work more to take in oxygen. What’s up with that?

  1. When you are stationary and hardly do any form of exercise, climbing up a flight of stairs becomes an uphill task, so tasking you get short of breath. Regular exercise is good for your overall health. Walking, running, and other forms of aerobics are excellent for your cardiovascular health. Regular exercise also increases your endurance threshold and metabolic rate. To avoid panting when taking the stairs therefore, you have to exercise more. Dump the elevator and get moving regularly.  When your exercise routine is in top form, you will discover that taking the stairs becomes a leisurely activity.
  2. Exceeding your endurance threshold. Everyone’s endurance threshold or limit is different. Some people could go up 5 flights of stairs and still be in top form while others can only do two before they begin panting for breath. Know your threshold and work with it, gradually increasing it. Regular endurance workouts will help build your resilience and increase your threshold. This applies to both active and inactive persons. To increase our endurance limit, work out more, avoid being stationary, eat healthy and nourishing foods instead of junk.
  3. Taking the stairs after a long period of rest could be the cause of shortness of breath after going up a flight of stairs. When the body has assumed a state of rest, it needs to slowly get back into motion as it takes some seconds for the body to adjust. When taking the stairs after a period of rest, start slowly and gradually increase your pace. This will enable the body balance out and control your breathing.
  4. Consider your health condition. Some known health conditions, such as asthma, could cause shortness of breath after going up a flight of stairs. Always move around with your ventilators and take short breaks while taking the stairs. Exercise more to increase threshold. Other conditions such as heart and pulmonary diseases could also cause shortness of breath on the stairs. Remember to take a break if it gets increasingly difficult for you to breathe while on the stirs!
Fitness

Treadmill

All You Need To Know About Treadmills

These days, it is chic to use the treadmill in the gym, at home, or wherever. It is even more cliché to own one. But in the beginning, it was not so.

Our dearly beloved treadmill had a very humble, not so appealing beginning. It originated in prisons as a torture machine! It was devised to reform stubborn and idle inmates and was originally known as ‘tread wheel’.

The tread wheel was invented by Sir William Cubitt, an English civil engineer in 1818. It was built as an 18 spokes, large paddle wheel, which prisoners climbed like stair cases. As the prisoners climbed or treaded on the wheels, the spokes turned and the resultant energy was used to pump water or grind grain hence the name tread wheel.

 The prisoners took turns in 8-hour (plus or minus) shifts on the machine, climbing an equivalent of 7,200 feet. It was so tortuous it served its purpose of taming some of New York’s most hardened prisoners, according to a prison guard, James Hardie in 1824.

Americans stopped using the tread wheel overtime because it was too tortuous and rather chose to send prisoners to the fields for farming, wood breaking and stone crushing. The Brits kept using it until the late 19th century when it was eventually abandoned, for being too grueling.

The modern day treadmill was created by a mechanical engineer, William Stuart. His interest was sparked by a publication by H. Cooper, an American doctor and Air force colonel on the health benefits of aerobics, emphasizing on the benefits of walking/aerobics to the cardio-vascular system. The treadmill has evolved ever since into the many types and makes there are today.

Changing times are fast replacing outdoor walking with the use of treadmills. Back in the days before the treadmill became the in-thing, people walked and ran some distances for fitness purposes. Walking involves putting one foot in front of the other in onward movement. It could be slow, striding, side cross, overs, long or short distance walks. It is a low impact exercise which does not necessarily require a lot of physical exertion, easily practiced by everyone who has use of their legs.

Although a low impact exercise, walking is advantageous because it can be done at anytime, anywhere (even indoors) and by almost everybody be they young, old, obese, blind, deaf, and the like. It is so beneficial that even 30 minutes on the go daily, reduces the risks of certain disease conditions and improves overall well being.

The cons of walking such as boredom, low impact, safety, weather conditions, have made the treadmill more popular.  Before I go on to the benefits of using the treadmill, i have to elaborate more on the treadmill such as its components, types, functions, advantages of each of the types, what you need to know before you buy the treadmill and before you hop on one.

What is a treadmill?

woman running on a treadmill

Treadmills are machines used for running, jogging or walking as a means of exercising the body while you remain at the same spot. It comprises of the frame, belt, handles, screen and motor (for electronic treadmills). The belt is the mat like part where you put your foot on to run/walk. It rolls when set in motion, either manually or electronically thereby enabling movement. The speed depends on the setting or manual pressure exerted. The screen or dashboard serves as the control and display panel. Here, the machine is powered on/off, speed set, it also displays distance covered, heart rate, calories burnt, workout videos. the screen is powered by AV batteries in non-motorized treadmills while the electronic motor controls the screen in motorized ones.

The handles of motorized treadmills have sensors installed. While on the treadmill, you grasp the sensors with both hands to enable the machine read your heartbeat, blood pressure and calories burnt.

The treadmill comes in different sizes depending on function and capacity. Motorized treadmills are often bigger while manual ones are smaller.

Types of Treadmill.

There are basically two major types of treadmills, the motorized or electronic treadmill and the Non-motorized or Manual treadmill. Both function as walking/running machines but are majorly differentiated by their mechanical set up.

Motorized/Electronic Treadmill.

Motorized treadmills are electronically powered machines with motors. The motor moves the belt when set in motion such that you don’t have to exert pressure when using it. The motor rolls the belt, sets the speed, controls the display screen and hand sensors.

Each motor is built with particular horsepower. The horsepower determines the weight capacity of the treadmill. The higehr the horsepower, the heavier the weight it can carry and also the higher its speed. Commercial treadmills have higher horsepower and can work for longer hours than personal types.

Advantages of Motorized Treadmill

Motorized or electronic treadmills have some advantages over manual or non-motorized treadmills due to its use of electronic motor.

  • Speed. Motorized treadmills have higher spped levels. The higher the horsepower, the higher the speed level. It also has provision for speed control and adjustment. You could adjust the speed higher or lower while still running, jogging or walking.
  • Automatic Incline and Decline Features. This feature enables you adjust the belt, or running path up and down, producing the effect of running up or down hill. With motorized treadmills, you can incline the treadmill up or down while running and do not have to step down to do so. The level of incline depends on the user’s preference; it ranges from 6-40%.
  • Electronic Measurement Screen. Electronic treadmills are built with electronic/automatic measurement, displayed on a screen infront of the machine. It measures calories, heartbeat, distance covered, blood pressure and speed. With this feature, you can easily tell how much calories exerted during a session, distance covered, adjust your speed levels, and check heart rate and blood pressure accordingly.
  • No Physical Exertion. You don’t need to exert physical energy to start and maintain your running tempo as this is controlled electronically.
  • Suitable for running, jogging and walking.

Disadvantages of Electronic/Motorized Treadmills

Everything that has an advantage definitely must have some disadvantages. The ultimate choice lies with the end user after carefully considering the pros and cons. Disadvantages of motorized treadmills are.

  • Cost. Motorized treadmills are more expensive than manual. The cost depends on the capacity i.e., the horsepower and size of the treadmill.
  • Size. They are built to be bigger in size. This makes it space consuming and not suitable for users with little space.
  • Energy Consuming. Since motorized treadmills are electronically powered, they consume power and do not function without electricity. The higher the horsepower, the higher its power consumption rate.
  • Risk of accident. Motorized treadmills are not as safe as manual ones because they start and stop automatically. It is advisable to stand on the sidebars before switching the machine on and off, then to gingerly step on the belt. Start with a minimal speed and gradually increase it to desired speed. Ensure that wires are correctly connected to avoid risk of electric shock or being thrown off balance by the sudden stop of the machine due to power surge.

Non-Motorized or Manual Treadmill

As the name implies, this type of treadmill is built without a motor, it is operated manually using the strength of the user. This means the belt is set in motion by the physical pressure exerted on it by the user. The user determines the speed, when it starts and stops. Non-motorized treadmills are ideal for walking and not running due to their inbuilt speed limits and sizes.

There are two types of non-motorized treadmills, the curved and flat belt.

  • The curved manual treadmill

This is a non-motorized treadmill with a curved surface running belt, curved in the form of an arc. Stepping up the arc increases your speed and acts like the incline feature of the motorized treadmill while stepping further down reduces speed and brings the treadmill to a halt. It is perfect for interval and consistent paced training.

  • Flat belt treadmill is the regular, flat surface manual treadmill. They are usually small and portable.

Advantages of Non-Motorized or Manual Treadmills.

  • No Electricity Needed. Manual treadmills are built without electronic motors therefore do not need electricity to be powered. They are muscle powered, by the effort of the user. This saves on the cost of electricity, affords you the flexibility of positioning the treadmill anywhere of your choice
  • It is Cost Effective. They are way cheaper than electronic treadmills, especially the flat belt types.
  • Less Bulk. Non-Motorized treadmills are less bulky; they are smaller in built saving on space. Most of them are also foldable.
  • Enhanced Safety. Since you are in complete control of the speed, start and stop of your manual/non-motorized treadmill, it is much safer than the motorized cousins. It has low risk of one falling off the machine during work outs, electrical shocks due to sudden power failure and unlike the motorized treadmill which emits dangerous electromagnetic field (EMF), The non motorized treadmill completely eliminates this risk.

Disadvantages of Non-Motorized/Manual Treadmill.

  • Since it is self powered, it means more muscle exertion which could lead to muscle strain.
  • No automatic incline and decline features. This is a great put off as you have to break your workout, get off the machine to adjust the incline to your choice.
  • Speed. Manual treadmills are not built with as much speed as electronic ones. They are ideal for walking and not running. The highest speed you can get from it is jogging speed.

Before You Buy That Treadmill. . .

Now you know all about treadmills, the types and their pros and cons. You must consider these insights before you buy one

  1. Your Budget. It is possible to get all excited and want to purchase the best treadmill there is in the market, but you need to stop and think; how much do you really want to spend on a treadmill? If your set budget is not enough for the type you have in mind, you could go for alternatives such as fairly used or refurbished ones which are in good working conditions. These can be found in shops where fairly used goods are sold or you talk to your dealer or gym instructor. They just might know of someone who wants to sell!
  2. Type. Make up your mind about the type you want. Do you want motorized or non-motorized treadmill? The type will be determined by the availability of space, power supply, your body size and, your health and fitness needs.
  3. Your Body Weight and Height. Every treadmill has a specific size limit, above which it cannot function well. Ensure that you cross check your weight and the size of the treadmill of your choice. The higher your body weight, the higher the horsepower you will need likewise the taller you are, the longer the treadmill belt you will need.
  4. Number of Users and Preferred gadgets/Accessories. Just like your body weight, treadmills are built for personal and commercial uses. If the machine will be used by a whole lot of people, it is better you buy one with a larger capacity to avoid early wear out. Your preferred gadgets should also be put into consideration when choosing a treadmill. Do you want one with a Bluetooth headphone, internet or USB connection where you could watch work out videos as you train, dash board showing the distance covered, calories burnt? Sorting out these questions will guide you in choosing a suitable treadmill.
  5. Your Health Condition. Some health conditions do not require you to use the treadmill, especially without supervision. Cross check with your doctor to ensure you are ok to use the treadmill. Check blood pressure and heart rate before using the machine.

Now you know all about the treadmill, step out, grab one and be fit!

gym bag with essentials
Fitness

10 Gym Bag Essentials For Effective Workout.

Traveling to your desired destination becomes real when you pack your bags. Packing your bag is so essential that it is synonymous with readiness/preparedness. Same goes for your gym sessions. You are ready to hit the gym when you have a gym bag packed with must-have gym items.

A well-packed gym bag showcases readiness and is essential for an impactful gym session. It boosts your confidence knowing that you have all you need during and after your gym session at hand.

You need to have a gym bag ready,  either in your car trunk or packed and kept at home,  to remind and encourage you to hit the gym. It is not any bag that does this trick, but one packed with absolutely essential items for your workout sessions to be exciting, impactful and worthwhile.

What therefore are these 10 gym bag essentials?

1. GYM BAG.

Every occasion has a matching bag, the gym is not an exception. To pack right, you need the right bag. A gym bag doesn’t have to be too big to carry, but also not too small. It must be something roomy enough to contain every other essential item, with side compartments for a water bottle. The type, (sling or knapsack) depends on your preference. It has to be sturdy, so it doesn’t wear and tear easily. It must not be too heavy to ensure portability.

2. Water Bottle.

Exercise makes you sweaty and thirsty, therefore the need to cool off with regular sips of water. A water bottle is essential to hold your own water while at the gym. It is more convenient than using shared cups or bottles at the gym. It reduces the risk of contracting infection too. You may also have a preferred type of water, maybe fruit infused water, mineral water, etc. having and carrying your own bottle to the gym affords you the luxury of having your preferred water.

3. SIZEABLE BATH TOWEL.

A sizeable towel is a gym bag essential due to its multiple uses. It could be used to hold sweat, dry the body after having a bath, or placed on the floor to be used as a gym mat. It is not advisable to use the shared towel at the gym to avoid the spread of infection. Your towel should also be changed often.

4. FIRST AID KIT.

A small first aid kit is also an essential part of your gym bag. Having a bag that can hold your first aid kits such as razor blade, scissors, pain reliever, bandages, blister pads, sanitary towel, plaster; gauze, can be a lifesaver. It could be a travel size purse which can easily fit into the bag, leaving room for other items.

5. COSMETICS/TOILETRIES PACK. 

This is a pack containing your personal care items, all in one place which you may need after having your bath at the gym. It should contain mini pack body wash or soap, shampoo, body cream, deodorant, hair combs, large body wipes, breath freshener or toothpaste and brush depending on your preference.

6. GYM CLOTHES.

If you go to the gym from anywhere else but home, having your gym clothes in your gym bag is absolutely necessary. It saves you the stress of going home to change. You may even end up not having the zeal to return to the gym when you get home. Having extra gym clothes, in the bag is also a necessity.

7. FITNESS TRACKER AND HEART RATE MONITOR.

This is a device that monitors your workout level, calories burnt, time spent and heart rate. It helps you keep track of your workout. Having a heart rate monitor is essential, especially for people who are prone to pulmonary illnesses such as high blood pressure. It helps regulate your speed levels.

8. HEADPHONES.

For some people, listening to music during a workout relaxes them and enhances productivity. it shuts out distractions thereby increasing concentration. It is a must have item for your gym bag.

9. NYLON FOR WET CLOTHES.

You don’t want your wet clothes messing up your entire gym bag right? Then you need nylon for packing up your wet clothes and towel before putting them in the bag. It could also be used to pack your gym shoes.

10. WEIGHT LIFTING GLOVES.

Weight lifting gloves are worn on the hands for protection and a better grip while lifting weights. You should have them in your gym bag at all times. It prevents blisters and calloused hands while helping you have a firmer grip on weight rods.