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Getting the family fit and healthy together

24 Aug 2018

Family fitness

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Your health is important

It’s so important to prioritise the health of every member of the family, no matter what stage of life they are in.

Thankfully, keeping the family active and healthy doesn’t need to be a chore with our easy tips!

1. Let the kids decide

If you want to make fitness appealing, don’t be a “helicopter parent”. Let your kids have the freedom to choose their own fun activity, as long as it gets their heart pumping and helps them break a bit of a sweat. This could be a couple hours of jumping on the trampoline, playing a game of backyard soccer, or jumping rope after school.

On the weekends, why not have a picnic in the park and play a game of tag while you’re there, or take advantage of New Zealand’s beautiful scenery and plan a family hike?

2. Playing with food

Kids learn by doing, so getting them involved in meal prep is a great way of educating them about foods that are good for their body. Washing the vegetables before you cut them, peeling fruit like mandarins or bananas, or even just tossing the salad with dressing are safe and easy ways to get kids involved.

If you have picky eaters in the family, you could even go one step further and cut foods into different shapes for them to design their own creations.

3. Get competitive

Get the whole family involved in a bit of healthy competition with some fun challenges. Why not see how many days you can go without junk food, or have a reward for everyone who reaches a target amount of exercise for the week.

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If you have a smartwatch like the Fitbit Versa, you can even set up a family challenge and track who reaches the highest step count each week – or challenge yourself to beat personal records.

4. Work hard, play hard, rest hard

Sleep and diet are closely connected. The same hormones that regulate our hunger (ghrelin and leptin) also regulate our sleep and tell us whether or not we’ve had enough. When we have a poor night’s sleep, we are more likely to eat foods with higher fat content and increase our calorie intake.

Children who don’t have the recommended hours of sleep each night are twice as likely to be overweight or obese, so make sure you set a bedtime reminder and get the youngsters tucked in on time.

5. Follow the leader

How often is it that we hear kids say, “I want to be like daddy when I’m older” or catch them in mummy’s wardrobe playing dress up in heels far too large for them, with lipstick smudged over their face?

Kids naturally follow their parents and want to try what they are doing. The best way to get your kids involved is to get actively involved yourself and lead by example. When they see you enjoying your regular work outs and eating healthily, they will also view a healthy lifestyle positively and want to join.

This article was produced in collaboration with Fitbit.

Important things to know

Information correct as at September 2018