Confession Tuesday {8.14.12}

4

August 14, 2012 by Carin

Today’s confession might offend some of you reading this post because as a woman I should not be focused on outward appearance, body shape/size or weight.  But I have to admit, I am really bothered by overweight children.  I know I shouldn’t be, but with our societies growing obesity problem and the growing number of children with weight related issues, it only seems fitting that people need start focusing on a healthier lifestyle and start with their kids first.  They are our future!

I can’t help but cringe when I am out and see kids that are several sizes larger than what is typical for kids their age.  I do feel bad for them.  Growing up I was always the “bigger girl”.   I was by no means “fat” with a belly hanging out.  I was just bigger overall for girls my age.  I was called Chunk by the neighborhood boys because I was heavy and it hurt. I just retaliated with more name calling and quietly cried on the inside.  But that name calling and the hurt I felt from being not like any of my smaller, more petite friends only pushed me to change.  I joined the cross country team in junior high school as well as the cross country ski team  and the track team.  None of which I excelled at, but all of which gave me the confidence to lose the extra weight I had and feel better about myself.  My mother encouraged all of this and was happy to fuel me with good dinners and made sure I ate well at school.  She didn’t push me to lose the weight, but she encouraged my activity every step of the way. 

Also, growing up we were told to go outside and play, run around and ride our bikes.  There weren’t many days spent in front of the TV or playing video games. That is not say we didn’t watch TV or play video games, we were just encouraged to get outside and enjoy the summer.  Now a days I feel that there are too many things keeping kids from being active like TV, video games of all shapes and sizes, cell phones, computers, Ipads, ect.  Also, I get the sense that parents don’t force their kids outside like kids from my generation.  With fears of kidnappings, skin cancer, injuries and you name it parents are just not forcing their kids to get out and be kids.  Thus kids now days are more sedentary and with access to more unhealthy food than ever, they are not being set up to be healthy.   And it really bothers me.  

You have to wonder if parents are turning a blind eye to the problem or if they see it but don’t want to be the “bad guy” that encourages their kids to make healthier choices.  Parents, it is your job to be their advocate to be the best they can be and how can they do that if they are starting their best years as a kid overweight and unhealthy.   When it comes to overweight kids, I personally have to blame the parents.  They buy and cook the meals, they purchase the distractions from activity and they too often want to be the “friend” rather than the parent.  Kids need encouragement and a push.   Also, as the parent they need to be demonstrating a healthy lifestyle and body.

I am not a perfect parent.  We have unhealthy food in our house.  We watch TV, sit on the computer and have lazy days.  But we make a conscious effort to demonstrate a healthy lifestyle.    We eat fruit and vegetables every day, we exercise with and without the kids (more with then without!) and we spend a lot of time outside during the summer and when the cold winter months come around we find ways to keep the kids from becoming too sedentary.  I am sure we could do a better job at displaying a healthy lifestyle.  But I really do believe that if more parents took this approach, the childhood obesity problem our nation currently faces could radically change in just a few years.   So yes, I do cringe when I see overweight kids because one, I have been there, two they are not being the best they can be and three because a healthy lifestyle most likely is not part of their household.

 

How do you feel about the childhood obesity of our nation?  What do you do to emulate a healthy lifestyle for your kids?

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4 thoughts on “Confession Tuesday {8.14.12}

  1. anne says:

    all i know is that Ryan was playing “triathlon” at home Sunday night:)

  2. sarah says:

    I so understand this. I have struggled with my weight for almost my entire life. I continue to struggle with it daily and it is something that I don’t want Logan to ever have to go through some of the things that I did. So I try to model good eating habits and exercise so that it is something that he just always knows and is active.

    • Carin says:

      Sarah, it is all about modeling a healthy lifestyle and laying the foundation for good choices later on in life. I think it is the kids that who never have that modeling and good foundation that grow up to make some unhealthy choices. You are doing a great job and I am sure Logan is taking in more than you think. Activity and healthy choices now lead to a much healthier and happy children down the road!

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