Many families nowadays don’t do enough to keep fit, be it down to clashing schedules, not being able to find the time or because they simply can’t be bothered. However, for both adults and children alike it is extremely important to stay fit and healthy. Not only does it benefit your mind and body, but spending time together with your family members will also help to strengthen relationships with each other.
Find the time
Trying to keep your family fit relies heavily upon spending time together to do things such as exercise or cook a healthy meal, especially in the fast-paced society we live in. Although most families will have weekends free to spend together, or evenings in the week they don’t utilize this time sufficiently, and often spend it apart as opposed to doing a family activity. Sit down with the rest of your family, find a time when you are all free and make this your ‘family time’. This time should be used for exercise with the whole family, bringing us onto our second paragraph.
Exercise is the most important factor when it comes to getting fit, but it doesn’t have to be the grueling hard work that it’s made out to be! Exercise with your whole family could be a number of activities, there is bound to be something that everyone can enjoy whilst keeping fit.
For example, going out for a walk somewhere new, maybe at a nature park, is a great way to do exercise that isn’t too strenuous whilst bonding with your family. A day out to the swimming pool is also a lot of fun and is perfect for all ages.
There’s also many sports you can do at home to help keep fit and healthy, such as a game of football, tennis or even going on a trampoline! The point is that the exercise doesn’t have to seem like exercise, it can be seen more as a fun activity for everyone to do together. If you’d rather go to a gym, you can now buy family passes from a lot of leisure centers, so Mum and Dad can go in the gym whilst the kids go swimming or play a game of basketball.
Signing your children up to sports clubs and teams is also a great way to help them get fit, as well as giving them an opportunity to be independent and meet new friends. This is a great self-esteem booster that will hopefully instil a love of exercise into your child for life!
Having a healthy diet
Although many kids think that the 5 food groups are chips, chicken nuggets, burgers, pizza and cake it can be easier than you think to get children to eat healthily. If your family are particularly fussy eaters, it may serve you well to find out one of their favorite meals (healthy ones of course!) that you can cook often to ensure they get a properly healthy meal regularly.
The 5 food groups you need to follow when cooking are:
- Fruit and Vegetables – These should make up for a third of your daily diet, if not that much then at least 5 portions a day
- Starchy Carbohydrates – Another third of your diet, these include bread, rice, potatoes and pasta
- Dairy Products – Although these are high in saturated fat they also have a high percentage of Calcium, making them very important in a child’s diet
- Meat, Fish and Eggs – These all supply protein, which is essential for growth and repair, particularly important for children!
- Sugary Foods – These make up for the smallest part of your diet, they should only be eaten as a treat every so often!
It can often be difficult to incorporate all of these into your diet, so a helpful tool is a meal planner. You can easily draw these up yourself at home, just draw a weekly calendar then at the start of each week (maybe Sunday evening?) sit down and choose 7 meals for the next week that you’re going to cook.
Healthy eating cookbooks come in handy here, as they’re brilliant to flick through for inspiration for healthy meals. Once you have chosen, write them down onto the meal planner and stick it up in the kitchen. This also eradicates the ‘Oh no, what am I going to cook for dinner?’ panic that often sets in an hour before dinner time.
Obviously these two are the very basics of keeping your family fit, but once you practice these regularly you should notice a difference!
This article was written by Sarah Hickens on behalf of Trampoline Warehouse. Trampoline Warehouse specialize in professional trampolines Australia for all ages. Sarah is an active parent with a young son who she keeps entertained through a variety of activities and also a seasoned blogger who like to share her ideas and experiences.