Shedding Pounds With Your Toddler

Web Producer: Brad Maglinger

New moms can expect anywhere from 12 to 21 pounds of baby weight to stick around after childbirth. Exercise can help shed those pounds, but busy moms can never find the time.

Jackie Smith used to exercise all the time. She was even a kickboxing instructor, but that all changed once her daughter Sydney was born.

"You're just so busy all the time and when you finally get a break from the baby, you're so tired that that's the last thing on your mind," Jackie said.

When Jackie tries to work out at home, Sydney hangs all over her. So like it or not, she had to figure out a way to include her toddler. She used her experience as an instructor to invent an exercise class that also includes other moms in her situation. To keep everyone's attention, Jackie changes the pace of the class frequently.

It's not a high cardio routine, but it gets the moms moving and, "It gives them some special time with their kids. It's fun. It's not strenuous. It's not stressful at all. So they can get some fun time with their kids," said Emily Sandullo.

It's also smart to get the little ones started early on a lifetime of exercise. A whopping 25 percent of kids age two to 19 are considered seriously overweight.

Smith said, "I think it's going to teach the kids that exercise is important. They see us do it and now they get to do it too."

The Mommy & Me exercise class runs for six weeks. It meets every Tuesday at 10:00 a.m. and lasts 45 minutes. It's free to YMCA members and $22 for non-members. Children ages one through four are welcome.