The days are getting shorter, the kids are back in school, and the calendar is rapidly filling up with after-school activities and sports – fall is here!
Most of us, before things start to spiral out of control, create some sort of back-to-school routine for our kids. But just as important as it is to get our kids back into a routine is getting back to our own routine. Routines create structure and promote mental, physical, and emotional health.
Let’s take a look at what we might do for our kids to get back into a routine, and where we might be able to help create our own routine at the same time:
Encourage them to start their day with a healthy breakfast: Sit down with them and eat with them to encourage this healthy habit. Aim for a combo of protein, carbs, and fat. Short on time? Prepare breakfast the night before (try overnight oats or a yogurt parfait!)
Pack them with nutritious lunches and snacks: As you pack your kids’ lunches at night (or in the morning), pull out your lunch box to pack your own nutritious lunches and snacks. Again, we are aiming for that balance of protein, carbs, and fat! Use a bento box to add a variety of fun foods for your kids and yourself!
Help them manage their time: Keep a family calendar that your kids can see too. Help them use their planner (if age appropriate) to schedule in their homework assignments, due dates, as well as after-school commitments.
Encourage at least an hour of exercise per day: Maybe this is some free play in the backyard when they are home or after-school sports practice. For you, it might mean an hour at Prowess, or even inviting your family to take a walk together after dinner.
Make sure we are feeding them a healthy dinner: As often as you can, eat as a family! Use the plate method (½ plate vegetables, ¼ plate protein, ¼ plate starchy carbs) to help model a healthy habit!
Establish a consistent bedtime and wind-down routine: Turn off all electronics no more than an hour before bedtime. Encourage some light reading before bed. Be consistent about the time they (and you!) go to bed and wake up each morning.
Which one of these simple habits do you think you could implement today?
Kristen Van Hull
Prowess Fitness & Nutrition