Thursday, November 6, 2014

5 Ways to Get Active With Your Kids

As a mom of two, I am finding it harder than ever to get active. Although I have always been in generally good shape, I have never been a runner or an athlete. Losing the baby weight from my first daughter was a process that took me just over four years. It was long, hard and not very fun. I was grateful to lose the weight, but frustrated by the means.

At the beginning of the year, my husband decided in an effort to feel healthier he wanted to shed a few pounds, he went about it in a completely different way than I did. He involved us, we played as a family as we moved. The pounds dropped off and he started feeling better than ever. Now that I am trying to lose the baby weight from our second baby, I am going about it in the same way. Here are some of our favorite ways to get moving all together.

1. Hiking. Since our second daughter was born we have made a bigger effort to go out and hike. We look for easy hikes usually in the 1-2 mile round trip range. We want our 5-year-old to enjoy hiking as a family, not loathe it. We strap the baby in a carrier and we hike all together as a family. We have enjoyed seeing waterfalls, rivers and beautiful fall leaves.

2. Geocaching. The concept of finding hidden caches left by other people or "Treasure Hunting" as my 5-year-old calls it has really gotten us off the coach and moving around. We use the GPS on our smart phones to look for caches wherever we might be.

3. Puddle Jumping. While you do have to wait for the weather to be right, this is one of our favorite family activities. My daughter begs to run in the rain as a family. We are making memories and being active!

4. I Spy Walks. We go for walks and play I Spy, where one person decides on an object and the other people try to guess it. My daughter LOVES this game and it gets us moving.

5. Just Dance. Dance parties are our absolute favorite way to get our heartbeats up.  I bought Just Dance 3 for my husband last year at Christmas time and I have been surprised how much we have loved it. We play it all together as a family or often my husband and I use it as a work out.

When my husband started trying to lose weight at the beginning of the year, he added Just Dance to his routine a couple of time a week. My daughter loved playing with him and he was working just as hard as many other workouts but having way more fun. When Just Dance 5 hit shelves, we knew we wanted to try it and it is our favorite version of the game yet. My 5-year-old loves that it has What Does the Fox Say, Let It Go and Happy on it while my husband and I love the classic songs. We also get a huge kick out of the Tetris music track. Who doesn't want to relive classic video games?

For someone like me who really struggles to get moving, having exercises that my family loves to be apart of helps keep me motivated. Just Dance is easy enough that my 5-year-old keeps up well and hard enough that my husband and I both feel like we are getting a work out. It is one of our absolute favorite activities and I love supporting a company that supports good causes.

As part of National Bullying Prevention Month, Just Dance 2015 and Stomp Out Bullying have partnered to show that "It's OK to dance to your own beat," by encouraging teenagers to be themselves.

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls Collective and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.
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