I used to exercise all the time. I loved the gym! OK, liked is more accurate. But it felt good to work out. I especially liked the challenge of the escalator stair machine. Hot yoga, kick boxing and hiking were my other favorites.
Then I had my son. And, boy, did I get lazy with working out. I was tired. I had better things to do with my “me time.” … And I’ve been using that excuse for about, oh, seven years now.
Sure, I’ve done some biking, Wii Fit yoga and walking, but I need to return to making exercise a part of the weekly (if not daily) routine.
And now, with this latest issue, I’m really inspired: Locally based national fitness guru Ali Holman shares her tips and tricks for working out as a family, making movement and strength training a part of your culture and even using mindfulness when talking about your body.
One way to get your kids into fitness is so obvious it’s easy to miss: “Work out in front of your kids,” Holman says. “Demonstrate that you can carve fitness into your life, that your body is important and worthy of being taken care of and that you value health and fitness. If you were to start an art project in front of your kids, they would, of course, want to join in; the same goes with exercise.”
And she’s right.
I recently set up a “yoga studio” in our basement (a yoga mat and a $7 video in the DVD player). My son was immediately intrigued.
I wasn’t even doing yoga at the time, but I turned on the video and he worked out on his own, trying to do the poses, for about 15 minutes. Even for a 7-year-old, that’s a long time!
I can only imagine how much he’d do if I was engaged, doing yoga, too.
As Holman says: “Our influence, I’ve realized, goes far beyond teaching them how to treat people and complete their homework. They’re watching us to see what we think about fitness, nutrition and body image. And that’s powerful.”
Power yoga, here we come!
Sarah Dorison, is the Editor of Minnesota Parent magazine. She lives in Golden Valley with her husband and their 6-year-old son. Write her at [email protected]