That first eye roll from a (then) curly headed toddler of mine….I remember it like it was yesterday. Oh the emotions that ran through my head and came flying out of my mouth! How DARE she disrespect her mother that way! Where on earth did she learn such a thing?! Ahem. She may look like her daddy but she has her momma’s attitude. Whoops. And have you tried arguing with a toddler? It’s about as productive as a political conversation on Facebook. All kidding aside, it was that moment I realized how sponge-like kids are and what landed me where I am today. From how we talk, walk, react, eat, take care of ourselves and everything in between they truly are watching our every move. That one eye roll was no doubt learned from yours truly and boy did it sting because who likes to acknowledge a less than desirable trait about themselves, am I right? It was during those early years that I realized how important it was for me to lead by example. I can’t ask or expect something of them that I’m not doing myself.

Between my little sponges and the Obesity Epidemic facing our youth, I knew it was imperative that I do my part to end this disturbing trend by incorporating the importance of proper nutrition for children into my arsenal. That’s what this Coming Soon tab is dedicated to; leading by example, instilling healthy habits, learning exactly what our growing kiddos need and how to build them into their foundation so that can be strong, knowledgeable, healthy adults. If you want to get straight to the good stuff, click here. I do hope you’ll at least give me a few minutes of your time and read through this. Everything included in this area will prayerfully be a reference guide for you going forward that you can access easily via the drop down menu. Bare with me in the meantime because you know, kids, husband, job, school, extracurriculars and all that jazz. I’m good, but not THAT good. 😉 It’s coming though!

Now, a few ground rules in our house: We don’t use the F (fat) word and we don’t discuss our weight. We talk about being healthy instead of skinny or fat and how that looks different on everyone. We talk about eating well, exercising, the importance of sleep and drinking enough water. Our girls see us making healthier choices while still enjoying treats. We are not naive, we know we can’t prevent the negative body image talk forever but we want HEALTH to be of utmost importance to them versus a stupid number on a scale or the size of their clothing. They are the reason we live a life of moderation, not deprivation. We enjoy our treats, we don’t deprive ourselves or go on diets.

I’ve been hung up on the scale (not in front of them) and I know the struggle. I’m doing everything so they don’t have the same battle. That all starts at home, especially as their mom. We can control THIS portion of their impressionable little lives for now. What they do on their own when they are out of our house, well, we can’t control but it IS our job as parents to give them the solid foundation they deserve.

If you’re still with me, I want you to think about something. When you go out to eat, why is there a separate kids menu? Why aren’t they offered the same food as the adults? Why are they relegated to grilled cheese, burgers, pizza, mac n cheese and french fries? What are we teaching our children by showing them this is how they are supposed to eat? Why don’t restaurants simply offer the same food in smaller portions? Isn’t that what you do at home? Unless you’re a short order cook, that’s the way it SHOULD be.

We’d do anything for our kids, right? That’s a no brainer. So why are we setting them up for failure by leading them down the path to obesity? Why are we KNOWINGLY filing our kids with garbage? And please don’t tell me it’s cheaper to feed them the packaged crap or because ‘that’s all they’ll eat.’ That is pure and simple BS and I’m calling out anyone right now who says otherwise. Give me a chance to show you how you can change those bad habits into better ones.

While technology and packaged foods have made our lives much easier in numerous way, it’s killing us. Too much screen time, not enough physical activity and artificial/genetically modified foods are a deadly combination.

Just 50 short years ago, these convenience foods didn’t exist. Smartphones and tablets weren’t even on the radar. Most households were lucky to have one (black and white) TV! They ate meals together that mom prepared from scratch. They didn’t snack all day long and sit in front of the tv or computer playing games. Everyone was more active and ate a diet rich in whole foods.

I’m no 1950’s housewife…you won’t find me preparing elaborate meals in heels and pearls (it’s yoga pants and my Qalo band, duh). Most days it’s fairly balanced and but other days it’s chicken nuggets and maybe some fruit to make me feel less guilty. I get it. Oh my gosh do I understand!! BUT, that is not the norm.

As I said before, my mission is to show you how to instill healthy habits into your kids with as little backlash as possible. Like we need more of that after a long day of work, right? You will (eventually-it’s coming!) find nutritional facts and statistics based upon age/weight, healthy habits, proper portion sizes for meals and snacks (oh my word the snacks!!), kid approved recipes (ok, so there will be links to the recipes because whose got time to type all that out!?), ideas to get your kiddos off the couch and ways to get the whole family moving, label reading and more! Ready to squash this obesity epidemic with me? Let’s do this, together! 

Youth Exercise Specialist, NASM