Making Fitness a Family Affair

Getting the whole family involved in a healthy lifestyle is a good way to not only keep yourself on track, but is also a great way to try new activities with your family.
It can be hard at first to get everyone on board. People like different things, and organizing the “perfect” exercise may be a challenge. However, you don’t have to get TOO crazy in order to make things work. This is especially important to me as I could easily fall into the Netflix-and-couch mentality every day after work. Instead, I wanted to share with you a few easy ways to incorporate fitness into your family life.
Find an outdoor activity: Whether you are hiking with your significant other or kayaking with your kids, getting outside is one sure-fire way to ensure everyone enjoys the activity. After all, who doesn’t love getting out in nature!? You don’t have to do anything hard, either. Simply checking out a new trail can be sufficient! Something Ryan and I have been doing lately has been going for day trips. We will go for a hike in a new area, or drive somewhere and walk along the ocean for a change of scenery. If you have a dog, this is a great way to get them out and about, too!
Some other outdoor activities include: running (trail or pavement), canoeing, skiing/snowboarding in the winter (can make a great family getaway!), swimming (always great in the summer), walking, etc.
Check out a new class: One thing my sister and I enjoy doing is going to a new fitness class together. We have gone to yoga classes, zumba classes – you name it, and there is probably a class for that! Fitness classes don’t have to be expensive, either. With a little bit of research, you can find a class near you (check out a community centre in your area) that won’t stretch the wallet too thin. My mom and I signed up for spin classes, and that was a fun way to sweat together and try something new!
Other class ideas include: bootcamp, barre fitness (ballet inspired work outs), drop-in sports like volleyball, spin classes, etc.
Walk it out: Simply going for a family walk is a nice way to not only catch up, but fit some extra steps into your day. Additionally, going for an after dinner walk can help aid in digestion and burn extra calories, too. Switch things up by walking on trails, walking through a new-to-you-neighbourhood or enlisting some friends for extra fun and conversation. If you are visiting with family members, maybe try going for a walk instead of going out to eat – you will save money that way, too!
Make it a challenge: Are you a fan of some friendly competition? See who can go one week without sugar (think junk food sugar, not natural sugars like those found in fruit). See who can fit in X amount of work outs into the week. Whatever your challenge is, make it FUN! You can also have a bet if money is something that motivates you, or a reward system at the end. For example, if you successfully go one week without sugar (just an example), maybe you will win a massage or some other kind of treat (and not the food kind. You are not a dog).
Workout at home: Working out can mean yard work too, not just taking the stairs or walking to get the mail. You can always get family involved with chores around the yard, as that often involves heavy lifting, clearing debris, and lots of bending and walking. Further, you can try online at-home workouts with family if you want to make a family work out night and get everyone involved!
Workout for a cause: Often times running races are centred around fundraising for a cause. For example, some Father’s Day runs fundraise for prostate cancer. Fundraising can be an excellent way to not only get the family involved in an event, but it can draw people to train together, too!
What are some ways you stay active with your family?
Let me know your fave way in the comments below!

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