Healthy Mama, Healthy Kids

Trying to live a healthy lifestyle with kids has it’s challenges.  I always thought that my kids would be super healthy simply because that is how I wanted to raise them.  While they do get plenty of exercise between playgrounds and wrestling matches and jumping on couches, they seem to have their own opinions of what they want to eat.  Lately, I have been fed up with their lack of enthusiasm for what I serve them, as every meal consists of motivational speeches and bribery to get them to eat.  Often times when I go to the food store with the kids, I’ll have them help pick out fruits and vegetables to eat or try.  This week, I just threw my hands up and gave my 4-year-old (almost) complete control over what went into the shopping cart when we were in the produce and dairy section.  It paid off when we got home and the kids were excited to eat lunch!  And it was healthy too (except for the white torta bread that Costco sold us on when they gave out samples a few weeks ago).

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Raspberries, cheese, pepper, and bread.  Sometimes, the best kind of meals are the ones you don’t have to make. 

Healthy kid lessons of the week:

  • Let kids have a say in what healthy food goes in the cart.  Because my kids gave their input, I was happy to buy raspberries, peppers, green juice, and fancy cheese. (Whatever happened to kids liking string cheese?! Thanks again, Costco!).
  • If you buy it, make them try it.  Our rule is that they can’t leave the table without at least trying it.  Noah will often say he doesn’t like something, and then after a long battle ends up eating it all once he’s had a taste.
  • For us, not eating a whole meal might be ok, but it means no snacks and no special treats until the next one.

Healthy mama lessons of the week:

  • Spend more time in the produce, dairy and meat sections than you do in the other aisles.
  • Work fitness into their play time.  If you can, walk to or at playgrounds and parks.  You can even use the playground for a few strength exercises (think pull-ups on the monkey bars).  Go early before the heat…and before the other people who may be judging your inability to do a pull-up.  🙂
  • Let your kids see you exercise and let them exercise with you.
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See that hill behind the playground? Perfect for mom to run up and down while the kids snack. Noah had fun doing it with me after he was done with his snack.

Bottom line:  it’s not easy to keep yourself and your kids healthy.  A healthy lifestyle looks different in different stages of life, but what makes a person successful is their ability to adapt to those changes.  When life gives you monkey bars, learn how to do a pull-up.

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