No More Excuses: 5 Ways to Exercise as a Family and Making it Last

Getting motivated to exercise and keep fit can be a struggle, especially in the cooler months. I tend to find it difficult to get out of my warm bed in the mornings, and as the days are shorter, I want to be indoors before it gets dark.

However, it is important to stay fit and healthy all year round as there are many benefits, including mentally and physically feeling good. I feel much more motivated and energetic in my everyday activities if I exercise on a regular basis. Not to mention, my concentration levels are higher, which is important not only for me but everyone who lives a busy lifestyle.

Besides the weather, it can be hard to find time to exercise when you have a baby or a toddler, as you may not have a babysitter. Hence, the best way to avoid any excuse is to exercise as a family. Not only will it get the whole family active, it gives you the chance to spend quality time together.

The first step is to set goals. It is important to stay realistic and set goals that are possible. Don’t aim to exercise 6 days a week when you know you have other commitments. Setting unrealistic goals will only set you up for disaster and failure before you even begin.  Making a weekly chart may help you stay on top of your routine and avoid feeling overwhelmed with everything else life throws at you.

As a family, we have set a goal to get more active and complete the 5km walk at the YMCA Father’s Day Fun Run coming up in September. Melbourne’s biggest Father’s Day Event has been fuelled by a great cause:

Raising funds for YMCA programs that build resilience and equip vulnerable young people with social and emotional skills to safeguard against the onset of mental illness

Below are a few great ways I have been getting fit with my toddler and hubby all year round. Why not give them a go with your family, helping you on your journey to fitness and getting you motivated to join us at the fun run.

          Brisk Walk

This sounds like a no brainer and an easy task, but it can be a challenge when it is cold! However, don’t let that stop you! Get some warm gear and head out altogether! I never leave the house without my beanie and vest. Once you start moving at a brisk pace you will warm up very quickly. Start with a short walk and build up to your goal time and distance. Time will go quick when doing this as a family. With Isaac in the pram, Tom and I find this a great time to bond and catch up.

This is an activity Isaac and I also do when my husband is working. We love walking the streets and main roads giving Isaac to the opportunity to watch all the trucks and buses pass him by, along with getting in touch with nature.

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          Dancing

On those rainy days, we like to turn up the music and get our boogie on! Isaac loves dancing and we have a lot of fun joining in with him. Not only will it get you all moving, it is a fun activity that can be done inside your home where no one is watching. You will be surprised how many calories you can burn while dancing to your favourite tunes.

          Outside in the Backyard

We are very lucky to have a spacious backyard where Isaac enjoys riding his bike. While he is busy with his toys, Tom and I find the time to get the weights out and do some strength training. Besides doing cardio, I find it important to do regular strength training to help me tone and have strength to carry my toddler around.

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          Go to the Park / Playground

For change of scenery, we love to go down to our local park. From playing on the playground to kicking around a soccer ball, we definitely need the energy to keep up with Isaac.  If you have older children, why not play cricket or kick around the footy which can be enjoyed by everyone. This is a great way to get into the Aussie spirit as a family.

          Swimming

One of the most important skills for children and adults to have, water play is one of our favourites. With Isaac’s grandparents living by the sea, we enjoyed plenty of water play in the warmer months. In the Winter the best place to swim is at your local indoor swimming pools. YMCA have great facilities for every age. Don’t underestimate the power of swimming. I feel a lot of muscle soreness after a good session!

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There is nothing more important than family and making memories together.  Finding the motivation can be difficult if you have no support, but getting the family involved makes it much easier, not to mention benefits everyone. The key to getting motivated is to make it fun and have those realistic goals such as getting ready for the YMCA Father’s Day Fun Run.

Click here to register you and your family and make the YMCA Father’s Day Fun Run a new family tradition!

 

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