Thursday, May 31, 2012

Healthy Inspirations for My 3 Daughters

Although I am a bit of a Pinterest addict, there is a trend on there that is driving me batty... people in my feed who post "inspiration" photos like this:

And actually title them, "inspiration".  News flash: most people I interact with on any social media are over 30 years old and have birthed children... you will NOT EVER look like this. Nor should you be inspired to. Your body will more likely look something like this:

And this is beautiful. Soft curves. Healthy woman shape. And this is inspiring. If you are a momma over 30 and you look like those first 2 photos... it tells me one of two things, you are the 1% of the population with a crazy metabolism and genetics of a Grecian goddess... or B) you spend so much time working out and stressing over weight that you are missing out on life and time with your family.

It also makes me wonder, what message do you think you are sending your children if you are that enamored with thinspiration? I think that if I looked like Kate Moss, my 3 daughters would feel as if they needed to reach that standard as well... especially as they move into puberty and are even more conscious of their bodies. And, if most American mothers work 8-10 hours per day, this allows them about 4 hours per day with your children. What are you telling those children if you dedicate half of that time to working out, planning your zero calorie meals or researching ways to lose even more weight?

As a counterpoint, however, I do not think it is ok that 35% of Americans are obese. I also think that this is the wrong message to send. As mothers, we can not use the excuse, "I just have not lost the weight after my baby yet" when the 'baby' is 6 years old.  We need to be healthy. Healthy for ourselves and to set the example for our children. Now for some people healthy could be 90 pounds... but more likely you can be 130 pounds and still be fit. And you can be fit in a fun, natural way.

I like to involve my children in my fitness routine. I might go outside and hula hoop for exercise, and invite all 3 girls to join me. We are then getting exercise, spending time together and starting healthy habits.

I also do leave my house 2-3 times per week to exercise for an hour. I like to Zumba and to circuit train at a studio close to my house. And I talk to the girls about it. I share how much fun I have dancing in the Zumba class. I discuss how much better I feel after circuit training. How much energy I have, how strong I feel (after I whine about how freaking sore I am and I can't even walk up my stairs!) But they get the message that I am working out for fun and health. I NEVER discuss any weight loss with them or weigh myself or anything like that.

As with everything, I believe there is a happy medium. Set realistic goals,  (which includes not inundating my Pinterest feed with your 20-year-old supermodel bodies!) eat healthy, get active (and include your children) and make it a family affair. 

My recent inspiration has been these two mommas:

Kam & Liz have taken up running and are completing half marathons already! Now that inspires me. 

Do you have any healthy inspirations to share?

{Sorry if you find this a rant... as a mother of 3 girls, I recognize that I can be oversensitive to issues like these. But I feel like some parents are not sensitive enough and possibly just do not get it.}

Friday, May 25, 2012

2012 Summer Bucket List

I know there are a million 'Summer Bucket' lists floating around the internet. But with the unofficial start of summer coming this weekend... I am coming up with my own list for this year.

In the fall, I am going to start working more and I would really like to take advantage of this last summer home with all 3 of my girls... hopefully creating memories of the best summer ever!

1. Have fun outside after dark. Use sparklers, flashlights, glowsticks, etc...
2. Camp out in the back yard. Complete with a campfire and roasted hot dogs.
3. Visit the library and get some summer reads.
4. Play a game of basketball in our yard.
5. Have a picnic. (We have a special spot over some train trestles where we go quite often.)
6. Fly some kites. (This is a great beach activity if you go early enough in the morning to avoid crowds.)
7. Go on a photo scavenger hunt.
8. Go strawberry picking.
9. Go blueberry picking.
10. Go apple picking.
11. Go on a trash pickup in the neighborhood. (My kids actually love when we do this!)
12. Family game night. (One night where each girl will get to choose the game.)
13. Create friendship bracelets.
14. Bake treats for a neighbor or firehouse or charity.
15. Visit every park in our town.
16. Set up a lemonade stand.
17. Go bowling.
18. Water play (to include water balloons and slip n' slides, etc...)
19. Visit a farm.
20. Make homemade ice cream.
21. Find a parade to watch.
22. Ice cream sundae party for dinner!
23. Play a game of mini golf.
24. Ride the trolly downtown.
25. Visit the farmers' market and get a yummy treat to sit on the lawn and eat.
26. Hike to a waterfall.
27. Watch a fireworks display.
28. Play some pool noodle backyard games.
29. Create a summer reading list for each child and READ!
30. Create some heart rocks to spread about the town and bring random smiles.

31. Drive-In movie! A staple of my own youth.
32. A day of science experiments.
33. Painting... but not just any paint... SPAGHETTI painting!

Do you have any new, fun and creative ideas to share with me????