Family health

Family health: Learning how to improve together

Maria bids farewell in her final Healthy Family Challenge post — and shares some of the life lessons she's learned.

By Maria Stanley
Family health: Learning how to improve togetherAbove: Maria with her kids. Below: Getting in some family swim time.

What have I learned during the Today's Parent Healthy Family Challenge?

  • I’ve learned that telling them what is in their meal will only work against you. Keeping food a secret isn’t lying if it actually works!
  • Calling it exercise ruins the fun for everyone — instead call it family time, play time, or "let’s see who can get the sweatiest" time.
  • Cheese makes everything taste better and has almost convinced my six-year-old that she likes broccoli.
  • Water is the best option when you’re thirsty — just prepare yourself for the endless bathroom breaks that the little ones will need to make. I don’t know about you, but my childrens’ bladders have the absolute worst timing.
  • Bribing the children with activities rather than chocolate is so much more fun for everyone (except for your wallet — not so fun there).
  • Striving to be healthy is not time-limited — it’s a lifelong lifestyle choice and one that will benefit everyone involved.
  • I need to be healthy and happy so that my kids will learn from my progress and determination and not from my bad choices and general grumpiness.

Although my blog ends here, my journey to regain my healthy self is far from over. I’ve learned that being healthy is about respecting yourself and caring about yourself enough to actually make the effort. Take the time to make it happen for yourself. I’m totally worth it and so are you. One day, we will succeed because failure just isn’t an option.

Family health: Learning how to improve together
This article was originally published on May 31, 2013

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