We’ve all heard the saying—Happy wife, happy life. While many husbands may say that in jest, in fact if you switch happy to healthy you really may be on to something. Moms have a lot of influence on the health of their kids and families, starting during pregnancy. According to letsmove.gov, a child’s chance of being obese increases if a pregnant mom gains too much weight, smokes or has diabetes. And of course, when you make healthy food choices, exercise regularly, get enough sleep and generally prioritize your health, you are setting a great example for your family.
So what’s your excuse for not focusing on your health?
I’m too busy to exercise.
If you can’t devote an entire hour to the gym, get creative and work in quick 10-minute bursts of activity when you can. Play with your kids outside. Or simply take advantage of the childcare Shapes Fitness offers at many of its locations and bring the kids to the gym!
It’s easier to grab take out.
Sure making dinner takes time, but there are shortcuts. Plan ahead and cook several things on the weekend to freeze and defrost later in the week. Use pre-cut veggies or other ready to go options from the grocery. And don’t be afraid to include the entire family in the preparation. The kids will learn to cook, and they may be less picky if they have helped prepare the meal themselves.
I don’t have the energy to exercise or cook.
Sleep is an essential component of our health. Too many Americans think that surviving on less than eight hours of sleep is a badge of honor. In fact, it can be very bad for you in the long run. Prioritize sleep and see if your energy level doesn’t grow by leaps and bounds.
Making time for me takes away from my family.
The opposite will actually be true. Start by telling your family there are going to be some changes. Include them in more household tasks to ease your load and teach them responsibility. Finally, taking care of yourself is nothing to feel guilty about or apologize for, and it shows your kids—boys and girls— that every family member is valuable.