04 January 2010

All Aboard!

Happy New Year!  It's great to be back after enjoying a wonderful holiday season with my family and friends.  I am truly thankful for all that I have!  As we embark upon this New Year, many have already boarded a train to a healthier and happier 2010, however, who has company on this trip?

Some of us admit that we need company when we start a health program and others of us, like yours truly, enjoy "journeying" on our own.  Either way, you still need to consider that those closest and dearest to you need to have an understanding and ultimately lend support to what you are doing if you are to be truly successful for the long run!

The healthiest of relationships benefit from moral support and teamwork.   Many times goals are not reached if people have opposing ideas and more time is wasted when there is disagreement.   Distractions set in if we are not sharing the wisdom we believe in.  

In any given family, there may be only one person who needs to make a drastic change in their health routine, but it would benefit the entire family if everyone got on board with similar goals:  TO BE HEALTHY as a WHOLE. 

I cringed some during this past holiday season as I watched my children indulge in many "not-so-healthy" foods and I decided that we would ALL board the "Healthy Habits" Train at the start of the New Year.   My children are 7 and 10 years old, very active and in no way have any weight issues and I am certainly not trying to put them on a diet, however, I realized that I had to put some discipline back into their daily routine.  

Discipline is the key for everyone, children included!  Many parents think that children don't need too much discipline when it comes to nutrition, but that is truly not the case.  If we can educate our children from now about nutrition and it's purpose, we just may save them from a lot of unnecessary emotional problems surrounding their health as they get older.   Teach them about balance, moderation and control so that they can establish good habits from now.  

How can one get through these cold winter months without commiting the same old "not-so-healthy" habits and include the family? 

Sit down together and discuss why it's important to make a plan and a pledge to follow a healthy routine, and decide as a family to jump on board that train TOGETHER!

Here are some tips:

1.  Do not have separate meals for the children that are comprised of fast foods or food that lacks a good balance of nutrition.  Try to eat at least one or two meals together as a family, everyday, around a table, and NOT in front of the TV.  Also consider meal planning as a group.... let the children make some decisions. 

2.  Set examples by exercising daily and making good food choices everyday.  Mix up the workouts so that boredom does not set in (P90X, Rev ABs, Insanity -- great workouts that don't allow for boredom).

3.  Organize from the day before -- activities and meals. Set out the exercise attire and talk about what workout will be done for the next day.   Run your workout program like a family business!

4.  Explain nutrition.  Talk about WHY you (and the family) should eat certain things.  Talk about what health issues need to be addressed and why certain foods are being selected.

5.  Build a strong immune system during these cold months so that colds/flus have very little chance of setting you back.   The healthier and stronger you feel -- is the healthier and stronger you will be!

6.  Keep a family health routine journal!  In time, all of you will surely support one another!

Certainly it's cold outside, but try not to focus on whining about it.   If you are able to enjoy outdoor cold weather activities, go for it, but if not, there are MANY things you can still do indoors to stay fit, healthy, energetic and happy! 

Make being healthy a FAMILY experience! 

Here's to a successful, healthy 2010!

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