I am categorizing this post as Weight Loss Motivation because if you have children, then providing them with a better life should be the ultimate motivation for you to lose weight.
One of the first posts that I ever wrote on this blog was about how obese parents are more likely to raise obese children and how I wanted to lose weight so that my children would have a better chance of NOT being obese. If we model active behavior and healthy eating to our children then they in turn will be more inclined to live healthy lifestyles.
I can tell you unequivocally that this is truth.
While in Dick’s Sporting Goods a few weeks ago my little girl asked me if she could have a Camelbak hydration pack. I asked her why she wanted one. She told me that she wanted to run with me and she hoped that I would train her to run across the Cooper River Bridge. She knew that I always ran the bridge with my water backpack and she thought since they had a pink one at Dick’s that she needed it. I got a little choked up thinking that she actually WANTED to run, and run WITH me. It made me very happy. It also made me think that Camelbak needs to pay attention. Greyson is a very smart child and we would make quite the ambassador team for them! (wink wink)
This isn’t the first time I have noticed my new lifestyle rubbing off on the kids though.
Both of my kids eat more vegetables than most other kids I know. Charlie knows how to do push-ups because he sees me doing them. He has run over to my EcoCross (KettleHell) class several times while I am doing them and joined right in. Greyson is always talking about exercise and running. It is great. I know that my lifestyle will give them a much better shot of being healthy and that because of that they will have less chance of being obese. It makes me happy that I can give myself the gift of health and then indirectly give that gift to them as well.
I cannot encourage you enough to be a model to your kids. Be a living paragon of health and activity. If they see you being healthy, they will want to be healthy. If they see you being active, they will want to be active. Do it for yourself AND do it for you kids. If you don’t have kids, but you plan to, then know that the earlier you start living a healthy lifestyle the easier it will be to model it for your progeny.
Let me leave you with one last example of how modeling an active lifestyle with benefit your children.
My wife and I have always wanted our kids to be laid-back and easy going. As quasi-nouveau yuppie-hippies (aka Yippies) we have done all sorts of things to encourage this in our children. Be it taking them to bluegrass concerts or hanging out in Asheville, we have always tried to model this type of behavior as well. One thing that my wife and I have always said is that we hoped that our kids wanted to surf, because all of the kids we knew who surfed seemed to be that laid-back easy going type. We have spent a lot of time at the beach this summer (if you follow me on Instagram you will know this!) and it seemed for a while that the dream of our kids wanting to surf would never come to fruition because they both were seemingly afraid of the waves. Then it happened. Greyson started getting a little more brave. Then she started wanting to go out a little further. Then she wanted me to get her a boogie board.
Then I got a surfboard.
And then this happened…
It is all she can talk about.
Folks, your kids will do what you do. They will want to emulate you. Make sure that whatever it is you are doing, that it is something that you would want them doing.