8.14.2010

Tips for losing weight -with kids

Let me start by telling you my dilemma. I have three kids -all under the age of five- and I’m 50-60 pounds overweight. Well although it might seem obvious what my dilemma is, let me lay it out for you. If I fail in my work life, if I never achieve anything, never have a nice new home, car and huge bank account, it doesn’t matter. If I fail as a Father and Husband… it matters. Raising our children is the most important job any of us will ever have, and part of that job is the responsibility of teaching our kids how to live a healthy life as well as being there for them when they need us.

And how can I teach them how to live healthy and be there for them if I’m not living a healthy life and on my way to an early exit in life? I can’t.

So something needs to change. And it starts with me. But if you’re reading this and nodding in agreement, you also know something else about losing weight while having a family, it’s MUCH more difficult than if you were single and had no responsibilities. I mean, your family needs you and your time and it’s impossible to find the time to exercise.

In fact, I would guess most of us are the same, by the time our kids go to bed all we can think of is laying in bed or on the couch and watching TV. But I have some tips for you and me to implement to make weight lose a reality, while not striping our families of our time/attention.

I’m new to this (dieting and losing weight that is) so my list will be incomplete, but I would love for you to send me your tips if you have the time. So here are my tips:

Eat proper portions - This is obvious, right? Well this becomes even more important when you have a family, because IT TAKES NO TIME TO DO! Why spend hours in a gym working off all the junk food and massive portions we eat, when we can just simply eat smarter. I would guess if ALL you did was this, you could promote a healthy lifestyle to your children and not be away from them at the gym.

Incorporate kids into workout - What’s more important to a kid then your love, time and attention… nothing. So why not make playing with your kids a time in your day when you can also burn some calories? Try doing a push up with a two year old on your back, it will burn. Or how about lunges while carrying your four year old, ouch! Even just lying on your back and lifting them up can get your heart rate going. Make it fun for your kids to be involved and teach them that exercise is important in life.

Walk/Jog with a stroller - This one’s obvious, but my personal favorite. I love getting my kids out of the house (which also provides a great way for them to learn about plants/animals outside that you see as you walk). So when you need a walk, throw your kids in the stroller and bust that walk out.

Don’t drink soda - Again, why work out in the gym what you can work off by simply not drinking it. Soda is a killer and the easiest thing to drop. I LOVE my soda, but after a few weeks of not drinking it, it’s gotten a lot easier to not need. The hardest part (As is with any addiction) is getting through your trigger moments. For me it’s; pizza, burgers, popcorn and a movie, and anytime I’m; depressed, sad, happy or celebrating. OK. That’s a long list, but as you push through those moments without your trusted sidekick, soda, you will begin to not crave it as much in those times.

Drink water - I’ve always hated drinking water. But a few weeks ago I made a bet with a couple of my relatives. The bet was to see how long we can go drinking only water and nothing else (Not even milk or juice). And it sucks. A lot. But after a few weeks I now find myself craving water. So make a choice today and drink your water. I heard of a family friend who lost 25 pounds by drinking 100 ounces of water a day. And if all you’re drinking is water, that number will become very reachable.

No snacking after 7 - This is obvious to anyone who reads anything about dieting and losing weight, but it’s so hard to adhere to. Remember though, work smarter, not harder. Why kill yourself all day by not eating junk food and working out, only to cave at the end of the night with a snack that stops you from losing weight that day? If you’re hungry, chug some water. Stay strong!

10,000 steps a day - I have a close relative who recently had a doctor tell him to walk 10,000 steps a day and 8 months later he’s lost 40 pounds. To be honest, I hate running, but I LOVE to walk. It’s peaceful and not to strenuous. Like I mentioned earlier, grab the kids, a stroller, and you’re in business.

Nap time - If losing weight is important to you, you will be willing to sacrifice the most treasured part of your day, nap time. Get a workout video going or some free weights at your house to do some exercises when your kiddos are all asleep.

Late night/early morning - Another great time to work out is when your kids are asleep. Get your spouse to stay with them and that will free you up to go to the gym or get a walk in. Make it happen.

Remind yourself of what’s important - Are your kids important to you? Is your time with them and future with them something you think about? Well if it is, keep that in mind as you start to make changes in your diet and time spent, they are our motivation!

Well this is it for now, if you have a tip or comment, feel free to post it at the bottom of this. Thanks for taking the time to read this. Remember that your job as a parent is more important than anything else you do in your life, so live healthy, live long and teach good habits to your children.

Enjoy this day,
Matt

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2 comments:

Nathan said...

I wanna hear about the progress. Maybe following you losing weight will encourage me to try.

Or it might just give me some good inspirational reading...

the petersons said...

HAHA! Yeah, so far, one week and I'm down 6 pounds. I got a long journey ahead of me.