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Raising Fit Kids: Healthy Nurtition, Exercise, and Weight

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Quiz: Know How to Make a Resolution and Keep It?

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Resolution: Lose weight.
Losing 15 pounds in a month is a reasonable diet goal.

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Resolution: Lose weight. Losing 15 pounds in a month is a reasonable diet goal.

  • Your Answer:
  • Correct Answer:

There are no quick fixes when it comes to sustained weight loss. Be a positive role model for your kids. If you need to lose weight, do it the healthy way, not by crash dieting. Losing 15 pounds may be a good long-term goal but take it slow. Lose 1 to 2 pounds a week. Studies suggest you’re 10 times more likely to achieve your goals when you have a plan.

 

Write down short-term goals or steps -- such as eating an extra vegetable with each meal or walking for 20 minutes four days a week -- on a timeline. Adopting healthy habits like these is something your family can do together. Chances are your whole family will benefit from having healthier snacks on hand or going for family walks. Writing down your goals reinforces your commitment and will give you achievements to celebrate on the way to your long-term goal!

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Resolution: Stop smoking.
Going cold turkey is the best way to kick the habit.

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Resolution: Stop smoking. Going cold turkey is the best way to kick the habit.

  • Your Answer:
  • Correct Answer:

Quitting smoking is great for you and your family! Not only will it cut your risk for lung disease and cancer, quitting may also help lower your kids' risk of being overweight and getting type 2 diabetes. However, going cold turkey with no outside help -- like counseling or medicine -- may not work. To increase your chances of success:

  • Let go of assumptions. Quitting doesn't have to mean gaining weight. Not everyone who quits smoking gains weight. Most that do gain less than 10 pounds and are able to drop some weight six months after quitting.
  • Get support. Try the National Cancer Institute’s toll-free tobacco quit line: 1-800-QUITNOW or www.smokefree.gov.
  • Write down your reasons for quitting on index cards. Maybe you want to be a healthier role model for your kids, have more energy, save money, get fewer wrinkles. Pull out your cards when you’re tempted to light up.

 

 

Resolution: Eat healthier.
Getting rid of all junk food and soda in the house is the best way to get your family to eat better.

Resolution: Eat healthier. Getting rid of all junk food and soda in the house is the best way to get your family to eat better.

  • Your Answer:
  • Correct Answer:

A sudden ban on soda or sweets is a surefire way to cause a mutiny. A better way to get the whole family on board -- gradual change. Make healthy eating an adventure. Challenge each other to cut back to one soda a day, then to one a week. Eventually work your way down to one soda (or none) a month. Offer water or low-fat milk instead of soda. For something fizzy, try seltzer water with a squeeze of lemon or lime.

 

To stay motivated, deposit the money you would have spent on sodas (or lattes or other indulgences) into a jar where everyone can see it. Spend your savings on a fun, active family outing.

Resolution: Exercise more.
You need to sweat at the gym for an hour for it to count as exercise.

Resolution: Exercise more. You need to sweat at the gym for an hour for it to count as exercise.

  • Your Answer:
  • Correct Answer:

If it gets your heart pumping -- walking briskly, taking the stairs, or doing heavy yard work -- it counts as cardio exercise. And even exercising in short bursts of as little as 10-15 minutes counts, experts say. 

 

Aim for a total of two hours and 30 minutes of cardio a week -- that's what's recommended. Plus, try muscle-strengthening activities like push-ups, weights, or a resistance band workout at least twice a week. Sound scary? Break it up. That could be as little as 22 minutes a day of cardio.

 

Remember: Doing something is always better than nothing. Teach your kids the same philosophy. Make being active a part of your family’s lifestyle -- walk your kids to school or go for a walk after dinner. Kids need at least an hour of physical activity a day -- make it fun. Challenge each other to see how many sit-ups or push-ups you can do during TV commercial breaks. Or pop in an exercise DVD for the whole family to do together.

Resolution: Stress less.
Having a glass of wine is a healthy way to relax.

Resolution: Stress less. Having a glass of wine is a healthy way to relax.

  • Your Answer:
  • Correct Answer:

Sorry, neither wine nor chocolate are true stress solutions. Plus, when you turn to food or alcohol for comfort it teaches kids that problems can be fixed with food or alcohol. Take control of life’s stressors by compiling a list of things that absolutely must get done every day. Make a separate list of things that would be nice (but aren't necessary) to accomplish. Make sure “me time” is always a must-do.

 

Walking, yoga, or any activity that makes you get up and move is a great way to relax. Exercise releases feel-good chemicals in your brain and body. Chatting with a friend, meditation, taking a hot bath, or reading a book are also healthy ways to unwind. As a bonus, modeling healthy ways to relax will teach your kids the importance of recharging.

 

Resolution: Keep this year's resolutions.
You'll be more likely to have success if you tell some friends about your plans.

Resolution: Keep this year's resolutions. You'll be more likely to have success if you tell some friends about your plans.

  • Your Answer:
  • Correct Answer:

Telling people about your goals can raise your dedication and increase your chances of success. Try “buddying up” with a friend who shares a similar goal. Check in on each others' progress or agree to meet for a walk or a workout. You can even set goals as a family and lean on each other for support. You'll be less likely to bail on goals when you have others to help hold you accountable.

 

If a busy work schedule or illness strikes and you get off track, don't get discouraged. Teach your family that to reach your goals you'll need to keep your eye on the prize. Use Mondays to raise your motivation: evaluate progress, recommit to your resolutions, and set your goals for the coming week.

Resolution: Take control of your finances.
You’re so far in debt, there’s nothing you can do to recover.

Resolution: Take control of your finances. You’re so far in debt, there’s nothing you can do to recover.

  • Your Answer:
  • Correct Answer:

With the right plan, you can make some headway. Do it for yourself and your kids. Money is one of the country's leading stressors and kids pick up on parent stress. Stress is bad for the mind and body -- it's been linked to an increased risk of obesity. To cope with money stress, confront it. Track your spending for a month to determine which expenses you can trim, like cable TV or dining out. 

 

There are sites online or mobile apps that are designed to track spending. Next, throw as much money as possible at your most expensive debt. When it’s paid off, apply the same payment to your next highest debt, and so on.

Your Score:     You correctly answered   out of   questions.
Your Score:     You correctly answered   out of   questions.
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Yesssss! You know what it takes to set your sights on a goal and make it to the finish line. Sounds like you and your family are ready to make some new healthy habits. Go out there and go after your goals. Look out, resolutions!

Not bad. You know resolutions are hard work but worth it. Now that you've got some new goal-setting knowledge, you and your family are ready for a challenge. Which resolution will you and your family commit to?

Looks like you learned some new tricks that will help you make your and your family's resolutions stick. It's all about setting small, achievable goals and keeping at it. Now that you know how to make a plan, go for it!

 

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