Family Fitness: Ways to Get Active and Healthy Together
"Family fitness" is becoming quite the catch-phrase these days, as more and more studies reveal how truly out-of-shape many of us are, and how vitally important it is that we work to reverse these trends. Indeed, data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey shows that childhood obesity has almost tripled in the last 30 years, and a government institute states that 66% of American adults are overweight or obese. The link between obesity and diabetes, heart disease, and early death is too strong to ignore. The link between obesity and our fast-paced, fast-food-oriented, American lifestyles is also too easy to see. It is perhaps because these things are so apparent, that our First Lady has gotten involved in reversing the trend, with her Let'sMove campaign.
So recently, MomItForward hosted a Twitter #gno party with Together Counts, to get "in-the-trenches" answers as to what works for families who are working to be fit together. If you listen to no one else but MomItForward Tweeters, the best things to do are the basics— together—and make them fun.
Nutrition & Moderation
The two common themes were: 1) eat at home most of the time, and 2) incorporate healthy foods you all like into your way of life.
@Duongsheahan: "Cook at home as much as possible, eat whole foods and nutrient dense foods, and stay active! Also, I gave up "diets" in my late 20s. Really, "diet" should mean "way of life." It's just better to make health your way of life and stay consistent."
@jen276here: "We allow ourselves some of the so-called "forbiddens"—junk food, playing video games—but only in moderation."
@kitchenstew: "I put out fresh veggies for the kids 2 snack on while I cook dinner."
@carissarogers: "I sneak in a lot of veggies to various casseroles and one dish wonders, chopped small or even pureed. (shhh)"
@pinoysugarplum: "Less alcoholic drinks, less soda."
The most powerful force on the planet for healthy weight change isn’t fad diets or gym memberships; it’s the power of teamwork — of making a commitment to get active and healthy together. There are many simple ways to live a healthier lifestyle.
@enrichingkids: "I am soooo much happier when I exercise. Happier normally anyway, but exercise makes me feel AWESOME!"
@momstart: "Take your family Geo Caching!"
@alisonlewis: "Put away the mixer & use a whisk to beat egg whites... arm workout for sure!"
@mom4everandever: "Walking to the store is great exercise and cuts down on impulse junk buying."
Our #gno tweeters also suggested these apps and online resources as great helps along the road to fitness:
@troypattee suggests Map My Ride.com to track runs, work outs, biking, etc. @dineanddish suggests SparkPeople.com and PaprikaApp.com recipe apps for their shopping list. @utbrown recommends LoseIt.com and @JFinch27 says that 'nPlayFoundation.org provides great information.
How does your family stay active and healthy together?
Photo courtesy of Flickr.