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Fun Family Fitness

Want to lose weight and spend some quality time with your family? Having a family support system centered around staying healthy and active is a great way to keep your family in shape— and it can help foster a strong family bond.

Unfortunately, many parents struggle with meeting work deadlines and managing their busy schedules. This can prevent them from making the time to be active with their children. Just remember — it all starts with you! Modeling healthy exercise behaviors for your children supports a healthy lifestyle today and can make all the difference for your child's diet and exercise patterns down the road. After all, you're their best role model.

You don't all have to start training for a marathon together, either. Just a few simple changes, like taking a walk after a family meal instead of plopping down on the couch, can give the whole family the moderate exercise they need.

The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics offered some helpful hints for the whole family to lead a more active lifestyle:

  • Instead of heading to the movies every weekend, try an activity that gets you all moving together, like laser tag, canoeing, hiking, bowling or mini-golf.
  • Buy toys for your children that encourage physical fitness, such as kites, hula hoops, Frisbees, balls and jump ropes.
  • Plant a garden together. Kids love being outside! Plus — they will be much more likely to eat their veggies if they grew them on their own. This can also allow you to teach your children about agriculture and science — making this a healthy and educational activity.
  • You and your kids need moderate exercise everyday. Even if you have been slacking on physical fitness, all it takes are eager parents with a positive attitude who are willing to make a few changes to their lifestyle.