You've decided on the healthy eating plan that is right for you, you go out and get all the ingredients and start to prepare your dinner plans only to realize your children will probably not want to eat it! Now you need to exercise, but baby is crying and sister wants to play. So how do you keep justifying your plan and make it still work for the family? Here is some of my advice:
1. Get Them Cooking
As early as age 2 they can help with the small tasks of getting a meal prepared. My kids love washing off all the veggies so they can use the sprayer on our faucet. Anything they do will most likely create a mess, but well worth the lesson of eating healthy.
2. Try New Foods
Daniel Tiger is a favorite of my little ones and he sings a song "You gotta try new foods because they might taste good." It's silly but it works for my little ones to at least get them to try a bite. I always am ready with a PB & J backup plan.
3. A Minute Here is a Lifetime Later
Working full-time with a family can make it hard to squeeze in time to prepare food to stay on track. Everytime I think "I don't have time" I remind myself that 15 minutes now will add more time to my life later and imagine myself playing with my future grandchildren. Who doesn't love when grandma comes to visit?
4. Teach Moderation
No "diet" should be so strict that you can't enjoy a piece of cake at a birthday party. Show them that eating healthy should be the main goal but it is ok to treat yourself once in a while.
5. Work Out Together
Set up a boot camp style workout for the adults while the kids play at the park. A few times our obstacles looked so fun they joined in with us. Most park equipment can also be used to exercise, although no equipment is really needed for any workout as long as you can get creative!
The more positive things you do together as a family the more positive effects you will see and the closer you will become.
-Chenayle Gatewood; Corp Office Mgr for Fit-X Fitness Inc. and mother of two