For new mothers, it may take baby steps to get back into exercising.
West Hartford resident Brenda Holian understands firsthand as she raises her 1-year-old Jacob with her husband, Evan Lapointe.
That's why she decided to open a Baby Boot Camp franchise in Connecticut. The company is headquartered in San Francisco and there are around 140 franchises nationwide.
"I wanted something where I could be with my son as well as help new moms get back into shape," Holian said at the grand opening Monday outside the Shoppes at the Farmington Valley.
The class meets near Kiddly Winks on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays at 9 a.m. Baby Boot Camp CT will soon offer programs in Avon, Farmington, Simsbury and West Hartford.
"I think it's great in terms of exercise. It gets moms out with the babies," said Lapointe, who tagged along to help look after Jacob. "It's a fantastic way to relieve stress.... The sooner moms can get onto that track, the better."
Burlington resident Alana Crosby came to spend time with her 3-month-old daughter Sophia, get back into shape and meet new people.
"I just wanted to give it a try and get out and excercise," she said.
Moms can bring their little one in a stroller to accompany them on a one-hour light outdoor workout. Class members will warm up and push their babies in strollers on short walks. Holian said that walking is important for women in the earlier stages of motherhood, particularly since it's low-impact.
Babies can watch (or nap) as their moms do abdominal, agility, aerobic and arm exercises with elastic bands alongside the strollers.
Holian gives the moms breaks to tend to their babies as needed.
It wouldn't be a workout without music, so the moms also sang The Alphabet Song and Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star to their babies.
Kari Olsowy, of Bristol, brought her 8-month-old Hunter along for the workout for a change of scenery. She said it gives moms a good opportunity to meet other moms and still be with their "munchkins."
"I wanted to get out of the house, exercise and be with him," she said.
Kiddly Winks is located at 110 Albany Turnpike in Canton. In the event of rain, the classes will be held in the Canton Indoor Golf at 220 Albany Turnpike.
Any mom who comes to the signs up for a package of classes by Wednesday will get a 25 percent discount and people who sign up by Friday will get 15 percent off. First classes anytime are free.
For more information, contact Holian at firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone at 1-703-200-6551. You can also find more information online at www.babybootcamp.com/ct-west-hartford or by liking Baby Boot Camp CT's Facebook page.