Having a weight loss competition with your children sounds like a strange way to get your family into shape, but if you approach the competition with the right attitude, the experience can benefit your entire family. Firstly, make sure that your children have been examined by a pediatrician and you have been advised on how much weight your child needs to lose, as well as a safe rate of weight loss. Because everyone in the family will need to lose different amounts of weight, weight loss competition should never be about who loses more weight, but about making the entire family stick to their healthy lifestyle goals.
Losing weight on your own is difficult because you may find it hard to become motivated. Children are no different; in fact, it may be even more difficult for them to be motivated if they’re used to sedentary activities like surfing the Internet and playing video games. If you have the entire family take walks or play sports together during your family weight loss competition, your children can’t give you the excuse that they don’t feel like participating. You can also direct their focus to having fun and bonding with their siblings and parents as they work out instead of making the exercise seem like a chore or punishment that only the children who need to lose weight must undergo.
Encourages Healthy Eating
Another reason why losing weight is difficult when only one person in the family is committed to becoming healthier is that it’s difficult to coordinate meal time when only certain family members are eating healthy. It makes additional work for the chef in the family and it can be disheartening to watch other family members eat bad foods. Plus, if unhealthy snacks are in the house, children will be more tempted to sneak into the kitchen and hoard some the unhealthy food. Making sure that the entire family is involved in a weight loss competition–even if some of the family members’ goals is simply to live healthier–can encourage your children to embrace their new diet.
Teaches Lessons about Teamwork and Hard Work
When it comes down to the actual rewards for your family weight loss competition, you can’t hold everyone to the same standards. You may need to lose 50 pounds or even zero pounds, whereas your child may need to lose five or 10. Everyone in the family needs to participate in the competition, even if it’s only to become healthier and not to lose weight. You need to applaud everyone’s efforts.
Once every other week, you can have a weigh-in, but you should reward anyone who’s lost even a small amount of weight or who has simply stuck to the healthier diet and regular exercise routine. Show your children how hard work can pay off and how working together can help all of you achieve your goals.