Local Fitness Expert on Ways to Keep the Family Healthy

Patch extends a big thank you to Kiersten Bartolotta for providing this article.

As a fitness coach, I am often asked by moms and dads for some tips on how to be a healthier family. With a few small changes every day, we can make a difference in our lives and our children’s lives. Take a look at these few suggestions below and get started on a healthier and more active family life.

Don’t say the word “diet.” We often share with our children that we are trying to lose weight and are on a diet. Rather than using the term “diet,” tell your child that the family is committed to healthy eating. Share with your child the changes you are making to eat less unhealthy foods and explain how healthy foods will help us to be strong and give us energy to be active.

Share your exercise plans. Every time you go for a walk or a run or take a new Zumba class, let your child know that you are going out to exercise. Show your child that working out is a habit you have to develop and incorporate into your every day life.

Talk about “being healthy” and take the word “fat,” “chubby,” and “skinny” out of your vocabulary when talking about body types with your children. Instead, use terms such as “having a healthy weight” or “looking healthy” as a goal for our body type and appearance.

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Use small plates. Since 1960, the American plate has increased in size by 22%. Studies show that using a smaller plate is an effective way to control portion size. We know that kids should have smaller portions than adults. Use a smaller plate for your children’s meals to keep control of the amount of food they are eating.

Get healthy for charity. Bring the kids to the next local 5k charity race that has a kids fun run and encourage your child to participate. You can run/walk along with them.

Get them familiar with a group setting and talk to them about the charity cause they are supporting by being part of a community race while getting healthy.

These small steps will teach your children the importance of living a healthy lifestyle.

Get started now in creating healthy habits in your children that will last a lifetime and enjoy being part of a more active and healthy family.

Kiersten Bartolotta is a mom, runner, fitness coach and business owner of Walk To Run Fitness in Sayville. She offers fitness training programs for walkers, runners, adults and children. She is dedicated to helping adults and kids learn how to add daily exercise to their lives. More information at www.walktorunfitness.com.

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