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OT- More weight info to share

Last-Wife's picture

My post earlier in the week about "weight" got the ball rolling! Several people chimed in and a few more threads started, so I thought I'd share a few more things I learned.

Gibby and I have been taking a fitness class at our local hospital geared for kids, but the info is good for everyone. So I would first advise checking with local health care providers to see what might be offered in your area. Our local hospital offers the "Trim Kids" program FREE twice a year. Any adult can attend as long as they bring a kid. There were several aunts and grandpas in our last session. There was even a family where dad had custody, but because of his work schedule, the BM brought the daughter to class, and would sit in on the first half, and dad would arrive, and they would sit together, and then she left and he and his dd did the fitness together. The class meets once a week for 12 weeks. 30 minutes of the class is for nutritional instruction and tips. One week a therapist came in and talk to us about how food and weight affects us, another week we met at a local grocery store and really learned how to read food labels. The last 45 minutes of the class was fitness oriented. Although we met in the cardiac rehab center, surrounded by fitness machines, the instructor would not let us use the machines, because she wanted us to learn things we could use at home with our kids.

Here are several things I learned from CERTIFIED SPECIALISTS, and how Gibby and I use them: (All this info is for kids, but works for adults as well)

1. Any adult or child, regardless of losing weight or maintaining, should not have more than 35-40 grams of sugar a day. Aim for natural sugars
2. If your breakfast cereal has more than 9g of sugar, you are setting yourself up to "crash" and crave more sugar throughout the day.
3. If "sugar" is one of the first 3 ingredients listed, it will cause a craving later in the day
4. Balance carbs with proteins
5. A serving of meat is the size of your palm
6. A serving of cheese is equal to three dice.
7. A serving of pasta should fit in half of your palm.
8. A McD's kids meal is the proper size serving of ANY meal. (Gibby and I now get the 2 burger value meal. We each get a burger and I literally count out the fries, "one for you, one for me." under my new diet plan, I'll totally ignore the soda. Gibby is probably the only kid in America who HATES soda, so it's no biggie)
9. Switch to a smaller dinner plate. On that plate, only 1/4 should have meat or pasta, the rest should be veggies
10. 8 glasses of water a day
11. Encourage trying new foods. Don't give up if you don't like it. Your taste buds change all the time! You usually have to try something 6-7 times before you know if you really like something
12. No more than 300 calories of your daily intake should be "snack." Gibby knows how to read labels now, even to watch serving sizes. He knows he can "spend" 300 points. When we shop, he helps package out servings in ziploc baggies when we get home. He knows he can have ONE poptart, but not the hole pack. He knows he can have one reece's today, and another tomorrow. Or if he has both now, that's it for the night.
13. Don't eat after 8:00
14. Drink a full glass of water 15-20 minutes before a meal, it makes you feel more full

There's more, but these tips really have been most helpful to us. In 12 weeks, Gibby lost 5 pounds (his goal), dropped his BMI by 3 points, and lost 4 inches of his waist, as well as grew an inch taller.

At the age of 9, it was more about being healthy and his clothes fitting better. (lots of hand-me downs from the skids he's got to fit into to save the budget! LOL)

As for fitness:
1. Children should have no more than 1 1/2 hours of "screen time" each day. That includes gaming, TV and computers
2. Children should have 30 minutes of exercise daily.
3. Children should have an hour of activity daily.
4. Children should have 10 minutes of stretching/yoga as a way to learn to relax
4. Exercise and activity are different. Exercise is focused on getting the heart rate up and strengthening the body. Activity is just movement. (Running "laps" is exercise, running around the yard with the dog is activity.)
5. Muscle does weigh more. You will have weight gain as you become more fit. But your clothes will fit better.
6. Exercise for 30 minutes does not have to be 30 CONSECUTIVE minutes. Break it down into 3 10 minute bursts. Since i'm a teacher, ones all the kids leave the building, Gibby and I walk/run in the school gym for 10 minutes before we sit down to homework. On the drive home in warmed weather, we stop in the park, and climb up and down the slides and swing for 10 minutes. Swinging on swings is GREAT for your abs. When we get home we do something else for 10 minutes. In these cold winter months, we have become addicted to "just Dance 2" for the Wii. We dance an hour a day!
7. Half gallon milk jugs can be filled with dried beans and be used to lift weights.
8. Resistance bands are a must! Check on line for exercises, and an old pair of panty hose works great! I've built more muscle this way. my "arm flab" is reducing!
9. Make it fun for kids. Gibby and I sometimes choose a word of the day, and every time we hear it, we stop and do 20 jumping jacks.
10. Use commercials to your advantage- sit-ups, squats, lunges, butt-kicks, toe touches, etc.

I'm not saying we're perfect, but it has been easier for me since for me it is about getting Gibby and myself healthier. I bought a mini-trampoline at Wal-Mart for $30. We keep it in the living room and jump at commercials. If Gibby wants a snack, we do a quick exercise first. We read labels. We've cut our TV time WAY down. When I buy Wii games (which are expensive) I make sure it has some fitness component without having to buy extra pieces, like the fitness board.

So check your local hopsital, and see what fitness programs they may offer for free. In the MidWest region, Hy-Vee grocery stores often have a dietician on staff that runs classes about nutrition and cooking. There is a small fee, for these classes, but usally includes some take home meals, or gives you the chance to try new foods you might normally avoid.

The way I see it is, I'm going to live a longer, healthier life. I'll have more energy to mom. My clothes will fit better, and that wil save $$ since I won't have to go buy bgger sizes. I'll feel better about myself, which will lead to more activity in the bedroom.

And I'll be smaller than Loca GRANDE! }:)

FYI- I have been so motivated by everything I have learned, I have been researching taking classes to become a nutritionist or fitness trainer. As it is, I am getting ready to help our PE coach plan a family fitness night for March.