We all know how important staying active is for both physical and mental health, but sometimes it’s difficult to squeeze physical activity into our daily routine. By the time work and school are over for the day, it’s easy to convince yourself that you have more important things to do, like spend time with your family. Try these five activities for staying fit as a family and get the best of both worlds.

Walk

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Take a walk as a family. Whether it’s one mile or several, walking gets the heart rate up and the conversation flowing. Keep track of your mileage, and create goals as a group.

Climb Stairs

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If you don’t have stairs in your house, do lunges, or find a stool and step up and down on it. Make it fun by seeing how many you can do in a minute and challenge each other.

Modify Board Games and Card Games

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If you’re playing Go Fish and a player does not have the card you asked for, do ten sit-ups. If you’re playing Monopoly and you land on someone else’s property, do fifteen jumping jacks. Modify the games you play on family game night with activities that are appropriate for each participant’s age and ability.

Dance

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Cooking dinner? Doing homework? Turn up the music and take a quick dance break. Whether you’re rocking out to Taylor Swift or another guilty pleasure, dancing has been proven to build strength and muscle as well as increase endurance.

Watch the Commercials

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With DVRs, Netflix, and other streaming services, it seems like no one watches commercials anymore. If you are watching live TV, use those commercial breaks to do lunges, sit-ups, and squats. If you are enjoying Netflix or are watching a movie that you own, use that pause button. Make it into a game and explain to everyone before you start that there will be five (or choose a number that works for you) instances where you’ll pause what you’re watching. Challenge the rest of your family and see who can do the most of an exercise you choose before your show comes back on.

If you’re looking for a more structured way to work out as a family, there are several organized races that invite kids to join.

How do you stay active as a family? Check out our Exercise and Movement Pinterest board for more ideas, and share your favorite activities in the comments below!

 

 

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