Burpees and Babies: Moms find fitness, friendship at local workouts

McKinney Courier-Gazzette

By Chris Beattie, cbeattie@starlocalnews.com

Published: Friday, July 26, 2013

Fear not, passers-by: Those baby-pushing women in shorts and spandex are not a stampede.

They're part of Stroller Strides, a fitness program for mothers of young children. And they're at it every morning - sprints, squats and uphill stroller treks.

"It's a total body workout," said Lolo Sidhu, a daily participant. "It's like boot camp - with a stroller."

Chris Beattie/Staff photo – Stroller Strides participants do lunges in front of their kids Wednesday morning at Stonebridge Beach Club in west McKinney. Such workouts are held every weekday in either McKinney or Allen.

Nealy a dozen mothers met Wednesday in the Stonebridge Beach Club parking lot in McKinney, ready for another hour-long session. They had their running shoes, water bottles and babies - some double loaded in strollers. Cardio, strength training, abdominal exercises and stretching complete each workout.

The young spectators mostly watch from their wheeled confines as Momma breaks a sweat.

"We sing our ABCs while we're doing biceps," said Laine Moses, who instructs the class every Tuesday and Thursday in Allen. "It's also about coming up with ways to entertain the kids."

Moses, a program member for nine months, brings her 3-year-old and 1-year-old. Her son, Henry, asks her every day if they're going to Stroller Strides. Other moms see their kids doing lunges down the grocery store aisle once out of their stroller, she said.

The program operates through Fit4Mom, a company founded about 10 years ago in San Diego, Calif. It now has franchises around the nation, said Leslie Cuevas, the McKinney/Allen franchise owner.

Other Fit4Mom franchises operate around DFW, including in Arlington, Bedford, Euless, Grapevine, Hurst, Keller and Southlake. Cuevas bought the Collin County franchise six years ago.

"It helped me so much as a new mom," said Cuevas, who first got involved in California. "It helps having camaraderie with other moms - the social aspect and the fitness part."

Members are fitness buffs by morning, motherly companions by evening. They meet for kid play dates and moms' nights out, and many join the Plum Moms Club, which holds events across the Metroplex.

"For most of us, this is our social time," said Sidhu, at Wednesday's session with her 1-year-old son. "It's an awesome community."

The McKinney/Allen franchise will introduce Fit4Baby, a pre-natal workout class for expectant moms, on Aug. 27. It will be the first such class in DFW, and will focus more on balance and flexibility, Cuevas said.

Moms can transition from Fit4Baby to Stroller Strides to Body Back, a fitness class for mothers who want that pre-baby figure.

Strollers aren't necessary at every level - just sweat, sportswear and some maternal motivation.

"Working out all the way through your pregnancy and then after is one of the best things you can do for your body and for your baby," Cuevas said.

For local Fit4Mom programs, schedules and membership deals, visit mckinney.fit4mom.com.

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