By GRETCHEN GOSWITZ – June 1, 2016

About a year ago, a new phenomenon appeared in popular culture. The term “Dad Bod,” according to Urban Dictionary, was coined to refer to a male body type that is best described as “softly round.” It was built upon the theory that once a man has found a mate and fathered a child, he doesn't need to worry about maintaining a sculpted physique.

Women experience an obvious body change during pregnancy, but often, their male counterparts do too. Even after the child is born, time that was once dedicated to routine exercise is typically replaced with diaper changing and bottle feeding. However, it is possible to manage workouts and family time, with minimal sacrifice.

We turned to fatherly fitness professionals in our community for their advice on how to find balance. Breaking the Dad Bod stigma isn’t about getting chiseled abs or bulging biceps. It’s about staying healthy, setting an example for future generations, getting active as a family, and (bonus!) freeing up time for your partner.

Troy Taylor


Jayda, 6 years and Londyn, 2 years

How did your body change after your first child was born? Has it been easier, harder or the same with your second child?

I'm in the business of fitness and staying healthy—something I hope to pass along to both girls—so my regimen and body didn't change much because I try to stay pretty disciplined four to five times per week. The second one just makes me want to work harder to stay in shape for them long term. Londyn is the active one; I burn calories every day just trying to keep up!

How do you juggle fitness, family, and running a business?

There's no juggling, it just comes day by day. You can try to plan all you want but love takes over and things just fall in place. I wish I could spend more time with them actually. What I’m finding is that coming home to the kids is as pertinent as making our first million dollars.

What’s your best piece of advice for new dads?

Stay close and realize that time flies when it comes to the little ones. I'm definitely not where I want to be with the time thing. If you want to become good at anything in your lifetime, become great at loving your kids and be there to watch them grow.

How do you encourage your kids to get active with you?

I’m working with two totally different beautiful creatures. Jayda is the artistic and creative one.

And then there’s Londyn, who is Miss “I can move mountains.”

Honestly, my job is minimal in this respect. They are both motivated by their curiosity and intellect. I merely have to suggest something different and they are pretty much up for it. I know that whatever they set their minds to they will achieve. I'm truly blessed and grateful to have them on my side.



Jeremy Thiel


Jacob, 3 years 8 months and Lilian, 5 months

How did your body change after your first child was born? Has it been easier, harder, or the same with your second child? 

Since getting married six and a half years ago I have steadily gone from 195 pounds to 224 pounds. That's 29 pounds of weight gain. Mind you, much of that was lean mass and good old fluff around the middle, but it's not where I feel comfortable. On March 20, a few months after my baby girl was born, I made the decision to get back down to 195 pounds. by August.

In mid-May I weighed in at 208 pounds On the move!

What are the keys to your fit dad bod?

Stress management is key. I recently took up the Wim Hof method for breathing and contrast therapy (hot/cold showers) to aid in recovery and stress management. I'm also running 25 to 30 miles a week to help relax my mind. This also helps manage sleep deprivation.

What are your top three tips for helping out-of-shape dads get their body back?

1. Get a mountain bike and ride around Lady Bird Lake three or four times a week. It's great physical exercise and also allows the body to stay in a resting state.
2. Drink half of your bodyweight in ounces every day to help with hydration and circulation of waste and fluids in the body.
3. Lift free weights to stimulate muscle growth and testosterone.

How do you encourage your kids to get active with you?

Being active is a lifestyle. We live it, eat it, and breathe it. Our children know no difference. We are always on the move with a Concept 2 rower at the house, running around town lake with the BOB stroller, or setting up an obstacle course in the backyard to play. It's very routine for our son to ask us to count his sprints down the hall for end of day actives. He is just playing a game and he demands a 3-2-1-Go countdown.



Dane Krager


Duke, 2 years and Stellan, 5 months

How did your body change after your first child was born?

It was hard on the back and shoulder, structurally. You see, holding my first born was like holding a stability ball half-full of water, with an ambitious little red-headed honey badger inside of it trying to get out. Proper workouts and focus on my structural mobility at the Shop took second place to my stability ball holds at home, which played a toll on old football injuries. However, I was able to maintain a relatively healthy diet, while doing squats and baby curls at home to suffice my fitness role at work.

Has it been easier, harder or the same with your second child?

It has been noticeably easier to adjust to the addition. Still difficult, but happy to say I am able to manage business and workout time better around my family schedule. My wife and I are both better prepared, and enjoying our stride with the firstborn.

How do you juggle a family, a business, and fitness?

It's not simple, but there's a mixture of things that I've been fortunate enough to find: Primarily, a wonderful wife that is a driven and loving mother to our two boys. Additionally, an incredible team of coaches and management at the Shop, who all understand our culture and mission thoroughly. Moreover, an overwhelming desire to live happily, and in good health.

What’s your best piece of advice for new dads?

I rarely give any advice other than: “Be prepared to be unprepared.” And, “Save energy, somehow, for when you come home to your family. Your attention to them is venerable.”

Online Exclusive!

Dane’s Dad Bod Workout

Done quickly and daily

Prescribed workout: Done quickly and daily. Once in the morning, before heading to work, and once when you return home.

3 Rounds

10x Narrow Push-Ups, then kiss the baby 

*Graze your ribcage with your elbows as you descend. You'll only have a few moments before the baby starts crying, so move quickly.

10x Weighted Sit-Ups, then kiss the baby 

*Hook your toes under the couch, if needed. Go slow here; your baby's neck may not be strong yet.

10x Weighted Squats 

*Pull knees apart as you squat and keep your feet around shoulder-width and flat on the ground. (Hold your baby close to your heart). 

*A good way to increase range of motion in the hips, is to hold on to something stable with one arm as you descend, and rocking the baby in the bottom of the squat.

Key notes

Always use good form when picking up a baby – straight back, bend at the knees, and keep baby close to your heart.

Your baby will enjoy the extra attention and mom will enjoy the breaks.

This can be added to any workout routine and the exercises can be changed as needed.


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