Hey everyone, Candice Becker here again! 31 year old mom of two. My son Jackson is almost 5, and daughter Cammie will be 2 in just a couple of months. Life is a whirlwind over here. My husband Brett, works in the food industry and travels between 30-50% of the time depending on the time of year. When travel is high, our time is precious, and our lives are beginning to transition to the next phase of school and sports. Having children has opened me up to a whole new set of experiences, and challenges in keeping some routines, and incorporating new ones.
I got involved in the fitness industry when I was 18 and its been a part of my life ever since! I love being able to share our love of fitness with the kids, and seeing them flourish. Some of our most memorable time together as a family is spent putting down the phones and playing around, or exploring new places together. There are so many ways you can get together with the kids and work up a sweat, laugh, and bond without sacrificing your other obligations. Here are a few of my favorite ways to get my family moving:
We initially found UFC GYM about 2 and a half years ago, when a new location popped up not far from our house. I was skeptical at first, thinking it was just a fight gym for my husband, but boy was I wrong! The gym has opened us up to a whole new community and set of classes that are always changing and challenging. They even have a youth and family program that’s been amazing for us and for the kids. A great Saturday afternoon can be spent doing a Family DUT class together with our son Jackson while Cammie spends time playing with her friends in kids club. I have never experienced anything like a Family DUT class at UFC GYM. It not only teaches Jackson new movements and helps with his coordination, but gives him the chance to see Mom and Dad in action! I love having those moments together. He also gets inspired by seeing what the older kids can do, and wants to keep up! For days when I want some alone time while working our, or I just want some time to hit a bag, he can go to a Youth Kickboxing or Brazilian Jujitsu class, while I’m taking the adult version of the class in another area of the gym. Trying to find a class like that outside of the gym is expensive, and we have it right at our fingertips with UFC GYM without having to go elsewhere.
Nice weather can bring some great adventures that the whole family can get involved in. Hiking, and bike rides are some really easy, and affordable options. My family packs up with water bottles, snacks, and a couple diapers and we are ready to go explore! Sometimes we visit a nearby park, other times we drive to a hiking location and just see how far we get. When someone gets tired it’s the perfect time for an impromptu picnic to catch up on how the week has been going. It gives us a chance to connect, get a couple fun photos to document the day, and have fun being active together. Hiking is an activitiy that you can enjoy with kids at any age, and who doesn’t love a great view?
Some days our schedule really gets crazy, and we don’t have time for an outing, but there’s always time for tag or hide and seek after bath time! The kids have a blast running around and we get a chance to chase out the last of their energy before bed. The kids sleep better, there’s less T.V time, and we all get more time to move around a bit more. Creativity can lend itself to some pretty fun games. One night we are monsters and the kids have to run or defeat us, other times we are knights and princesses, defending the couch castle! It keeps us in a child like state too which I miss… Adulting can be tiring!
When I was young, my parents moved my brothers and I to North Dakota for a few years. The winters were no Joke! I remember spending A LOT of time playing in basements, playing make believe, jumping around, and just being silly. Forts or climbing areas can be made in any area of the house. You can take the cushions off the couch, or drape fabric over the dining table and run around doing “missions”. Plus, I don’t know about you guys, but its much easier for me to pick up a few cushions and fold a couple sheets after than to try and pick up a thousand Leggos off the ground or feel guilty about my son being glued to the T.V with a PlayStation remote or IPad in his hands.
Walk it Out
Lastly, if you have a restaurant within a mile of you, we try to plan at least a couple of times a month where we walk to dinner. Put the young ones in a stroller, or maybe if your children are older, they can skateboard or roller blade. Head to dinner and check the gear at the door. It’s a fun little switch to the regular routine and gets us out of the car for a change. Bonus- you’re working off a bit of the delicious diner you all just put down!
There are so many ways you can get up and get moving with the kiddos, but the main goal is just to make it fun. Instilling some of these habits can only lead to longer, healthier lives, and more lasting memories and connections with your loved ones. Summer is upon us! I hope you’ll read this and find some new ideas, or bring back some old ones you haven’t tried in a while. I’d love to hear about what you guys do together, and don’t forget to share your experiences, especially with some DUT class fun at your local UFC GYM!