Healthy lifestyle habits are essential for us all, and since kids learn by example, teaching them healthy habits when they’re young will help them stay fit and active into adulthood. But leading a healthy and active lifestyle can be challenging with multiple family members’ schedules to juggle — we get it! That is why we have compiled some tips, tricks, and advice on how you can keep your family active and energized while living a balanced life.
Make the Time to Be Together
Instead of just being the chauffeur and driving kids to their activities, participate in them all together as a family!
Taking the time to get outside and engage in physical activities as a family is not only a great way to have fun and bond, but it also sets an example of the importance of being active. You don’t have to travel far to make physical activity a part of family time. Consider biking around the neighborhood, swimming at the local recreation center, or playing sports together in your local park or even in your backyard.
If you’re planning a family trip, incorporate seasonal activities like skiing, hiking, or kayaking to get everyone moving and exploring. It’s not only good for your health, but it’s a fantastic way to make lasting memories while on vacation. A place like Winter Park, Colorado, is a family-friendly vacation destination that truly offers outdoor fun year-round. And while Colorado is famous for wintertime sports like skiing and snowboarding, you’ll find lots of summer fun including hikes throughout the Rocky Mountains, golf, fishing, and more. Get some more Winter Park details from Coldwell Lakota for your next summer trip.
Make exercise a priority in your family’s daily routine and watch as everyone’s health and happiness improve.
Incorporate Healthy Foods into Daily Life
As parents, we all know the importance of healthy eating habits in our children’s lives. However, it can be challenging to incorporate healthy foods into our daily routine with busy schedules. A great way to involve your kids in healthy eating is by having them plan and prepare meals with you. This not only promotes healthy eating habits but also helps them develop important life skills such as cooking and meal planning.
Feeling a little overwhelmed by meal planning? There are lots of services that take some of the work out of it for you! Consider subscribing to meal delivery kits that send you all of the ingredients you need to make delicious and healthful meals from scratch. This saves you time making a list, grocery shopping, and hauling everything home to the kitchen.
Healthful snacks for families on-the-go
Worried about feeding everyone filling and healthful snacks while driving to-and-fro from practices, games, and activities? While slicing up some fruits and veggies is an ideal option, it isn’t always enough! Here are some great choices to add into your assortment of on-the-go snacks:
- Cheese sticks
- Homemade Greek yogurt parfait cups
- Homemade protein balls
And don’t forget to pack dips like cottage cheese, nut butter, or hummus!
By making balanced eating a regular occurrence, you’re setting a foundation for kids to make informed choices about foods their entire lives.
Don’t Let Screen Time Be the Default Form of Entertainment
In today’s digital age, it’s easy to get sucked into the world of screens. With so much content available at our fingertips, it’s no wonder we often default to screen time as the go-to form of entertainment. However, research suggests that excessive screen time can have negative effects on both our physical and mental health. That’s why it’s essential to limit our screen time and replace it with other stimulating activities such as board games, puzzles, coloring, and reading.
How to get kids to play
Have you ever heard of setting up an “invitation to play” for kids? Essentially, the idea is that if you set out activities they can do independently, with you, or with a friend/sibling, they’re invited to get creative instead of plopping on the couch with a screen. These invitations can be set up while kids are sleeping or at school, ready to greet them when they wake or come home.
Simple ideas for invitations to play include:
- Open a game or puzzle box and put it on the table
- Set up a sensory bin
- Lay out art supplies and some inspiration for a painting/drawing
- Create an obstacle course indoors or out
- Roll out a play mat and set out a bin of figurines or cars
- Leave sport equipment set up with a note to find you to play or practice together
By making it a habit to prioritize non-screen leisure activities, we can maintain a healthy balance and reap the rewards of a more fulfilling and well-rounded lifestyle.
Set Fitness Goals as a Family
Participating in physical challenges as a family can be a memorable experience that can bring everyone closer together. Whether it’s a holiday 5K run or an obstacle course race for charity, these challenges can push you out of your comfort zone and provide a sense of accomplishment.
Not only do these events promote physical fitness, but they also help instill valuable lessons such as teamwork and perseverance. Training together as a family can also create a supportive and fun environment that encourages everyone to push themselves to reach their goals. So why not sign up for a physical challenge as a family and create memories that will last a lifetime?
Perhaps you’re not going to be a family team, and that’s ok! As a parent, there are many ways you can support your kids in their personal athletic pursuits. They’ll be more motivated to participate in their chosen sport or activity when they have an enthusiastic cheering section and the right gear. When it comes to gear, have you thought about the importance of teeth safety? Timpanogos Pediatric Dentistry has tips for protecting your kids’ smile while participating in sports.
Have you thought about creating a backyard that caters to your family’s athletic interests? Whether it’s landscaping to incorporate a jungle gym, pickleball court, or batting cages, you can work with professionals like Granite Landscape Center to design and install a yard that beckons everyone outside to enjoy themselves.
By consistently showing up and providing your kids with the gear they need, you provide them with the motivation and confidence to excel in their chosen sport and beyond.
Make Healthy Habits Part of a Weekly Routine as a Family
Parents, the best way for you and your children to stay healthy and fit is to make deliberate choices every day. Lead by example – get out there, be active, and enjoy yourself! Healthy habits can be difficult to develop, but including them in a family routine can make it easier. By planning out chores, homework times, mealtimes, and exercise together, families can set a positive tone and help kids prioritize activities. Simple activities such as walking the dog can be the perfect way to get the whole family moving and enjoying time together while also focusing on health. This approach sets the stage for a lifetime of good physical, mental, and emotional health and is a great way to promote healthy habits for the entire family.