One of the reasons why I love being active is how it makes my body feel. I love feeling strong, confident, capable, having mental clarity, and just feeling so darn good. I've said it before, but y'all, endorphins are AWESOME. So, how could I not want these same things for my children? As their mother, I feel like it is my responsibility to show them how to love and take care of the one body that they have been blessed with for the rest of their life. With that being said, I also understand that for many families, it can be difficult finding a starting point with getting the entire family into a new lifestyle change such as this one. Here are my top tips becoming more active and healthier as a family.
Tip 1: Make it a family affair
Whatever you guys are doing for your activity, get the entire family involved somehow. What we like to do is go to a local community track/baseball field and I am able to walk/run with Blair in the stroller, Colt is able to run around, ride a toy, or play in the dirt with his trains and dinosaurs, and Sawyer likes to either ride his bike or hit baseballs with Tyler. There is something for everyone in this little outing, and it not only encourages physical activity for everyone but it also serves as family bonding time. Win-win in my book.
Tip 2: Dress appropriately for the weather
This sounds like a no brainer, but you would be amazed at how many times I have overlooked this little detail when it comes to our family active time. If it's cold, layer the kids up. Put some comfortable and warm pants on them, a couple layers and a jacket or pullover. And if they especially want to be warm, add some gloves and a toboggan. If it's warm, dress in shorts/t-shirt... or if you're like me and Tyler, we just let the boys run around without their shirts on during the summer time.
It is very important, also, to make sure that your kids have properly fit shoes. All three of my kids have different shoe needs. Colt, is my wide-foot child, and requires a wide shoe for better fit and comfort. We love these New Balance shoes, and the fact that they come in wides!
Tip 3: Find something within your budget that peaks their interest
Keeping your family active doesn't have to cost an arm and a leg. Tyler and I actually bought Sawyer this bike for under $100 at Walmart and he loves it! Pair it with a helmet and some good sneakers, and this boy is good to go. Sawyer rides his bike, Colt chases him, and I chase Colt with B in the stroller... Bam! Everyone is exercising and having fun.
Tip 4: Set realistic expectations for your family members
This is especially important if your family is not used to much extra physical activity. You may need to start out slow. Even if it is just for 20-30 minutes, that may not sound like much, but it does make a difference. Also, when having these outings with your children, understand that they are not perfect and may have a meltdown or two (or a thousand in my case lol). Remember that patience is important and grace is necessary. Remember that this is not a change that will occur overnight with your family, but hopefully healthy habits being formed that will last a lifetime and transcend generations.
Let me know if you found this post helpful, as it is one of my goals to be a resource to you all and hopefully a source of encouragement and motivation as well.
Blessings and Health,