T Nation

Introducing Myself


Hi everyone,

I am a 35 year old mother to two kids, 3 and 5 years old. In my former life, I was a NCAA division 1 athlete - track and cross country. I’m here to look for advice on how to tone up. Currently, I am 5’7," 123 lbs and according to my Aria scale a BMI of 20 with 26% fat. I used to belong to Equinox (about a year ago) and would do an hour at a time on the stairmill plus some weights, but I ruptured my plantar fascia and was in a walking cast… and then a full non weight bearing cast for a total of around 3 months. I stopped my membership as it was a bit too expensive, my youngest hated the kids club and I just didn’t go enough to make it worthwhile. Since then my exercise has been just getting my steps in according to my fitbit each day - I get around 12,000 - 14,000 depending on the day. We also have some great trails behind our house that I will occasionally run on, but until my youngest is in a drop off preschool, I really don’t have the ability to run unless I have someone here to watch him. We have a Total Gym at our house as well as a Max Trainer (this tends to hurt my knees).

My diet is very clean with the exception of wine and “The Claw” (spiked seltzer water). I really want to find a way to tone up. I look great in my clothes, but when I am in a bathing suit there just isn’t any muscle definition and my skin looks a little lax/ loose in comparison to when I was 20 and competing. I’m also not totally sure if my body fat percentage is accurate as 26% puts me at average and I am pretty thin.

Are there some recommended Total Gym workouts that would accomplish this? I’m looking for something that I can do in the house that isn’t overly high impact (I have done Insanity, etc before) as my plantar fascia still gets sore if I overdo it as well as my knees. Any recommendations would be most appreciated regardless of it they involve the Total Gym or not.


I think you could find plenty of info about body weight exercises you could do around your kids’ needs. If you just want to look better in a bath suit, you could do push ups, body weight squats, etc, at home until you have more time for the gym. And if the push ups get easy, have your kid sit on your shoulders while you do them. My personal favorite is Mark Lauren’s book, which has a 130+ body weight exercises to choose from.