Get Moving: 3 Ways to Incorporate More Exercise Into Family Life

3 Ways to Incorporate More Exercise Into Family LifeMonkey Business Images / Shutterstock
When it’s hard enough to find time to get to the gym (or even have a shower for that matter!) how can busy parents make sure the whole family gets the recommended minimum of one hour a day of physical activity? Instead of investing in expensive equipment or spending more of your Saturday shuttling kids to sports activities, it makes sense to incorporate more exercise into family life. With a little ingenuity, you can find activities that you can do with your kids, which means more time together and more money in your pocket. Not to mention that an active family lifestyle can be fun!

Here are a few ideas that might give you the inspiration you’ve been looking for to stay fit as a family:

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Go On a Neighborhood Discovery Walk

Choose a convenient time each day to cruise the neighborhood together. Instead of just a leisurely walk, make it a fun, interactive activity that will involve the whole family. Count how many different types of pets you can spot along the way, include a short run up and down a flight of stairs, stop by a neighborhood park to stretch and play for a few minutes.

Walks are an easy way to create a daily ritual that even work well for families with very young children. Try it and you’ll see how quickly it will become a favorite part of the day where everyone can spend quality time and unwind together.

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Crank Up the Music for a Living Room Dance Party

Slide the furniture out of the way, crank up the music, and let your kids be impressed by your crazy dance moves. When winter weather arrives and it can be hard to spend much time outside, dancing is an excellent indoor cardio exercise. By adding jumps, squats and other moves you can easily burn over 100 calories in just 15 minutes!

If you have children in a range of ages, let older children choose their favorite playlist and come up with new dance routines, while the younger ones can have fun trying to sing and dance along. It’s an easy way for the whole family to have fun exercising, with no special equipment or Wii needed! If you want to double the benefits, dancing to upbeat music is also a great way to keep everyone motivated while working on household chores. Why not tackle those baskets of laundry or rake leaves to some tunes from Taylor Swift or your favorite 70s rock band?

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Plan an Event the Whole Family Will Look Forward To

If “exercise” is a bad word in your household, why not broaden your horizons by planning a fun, adventurous outing that will build your children’s enthusiasm for new activities. You could try bowling, hitting balls at a driving range, visiting a water park or horseback riding. Planning and anticipating events like these are a fun way to keep the whole family active and they can also create great bonding experiences as you take on new challenges together.

Whatever activity you choose, establishing an active lifestyle is a gift that will benefit your family for years to come. And remember, it’s never too early to start!