Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Are you taking care of yourself dad?

Another kudos to moms are the apparent massive support systems, programs, and expert advice to keep mom's healthy.  Dad don't forget that you need a plan yourself to keep going for your family. 

Years ago when my children were a bit younger I found my waistline exploding, but at the same time I had no time to even contemplate any type of workout.  Upon getting home from work Mom would head out the door and it was dad's time with the kids, mom needed a break.  I greatly looked forward to this time, but admittedly some days I was beat and I desperately needed a break myself.  Like dads have done through the ages, I didn't complain and happily I cherished this time with my children.  Not too much later and "dad's time" or rather "mom's break time" expanded to Saturday mornings.  I didn't realize at the time, nor did I appreciate, the overwhelming desire of mom to get her physique back following 2 children.  We slowly slipped into a norm that once dad came home, then all child duties became solely and exclusively dad time.  Between working all day, kids every night and Saturday mornings, family time the remaining weekend time, and there was not only no time left, but dad was beat.  I've heard this story over and over from dad's across this country.  I don't have the concrete answer for you, only mom and you can come up with a plan to fit your lifestyle and relationship.  To not only be able to keep up with your kids, but to be dad for many years to come and hopefully grandpa one day you do need a plan.  However, let me share some tips I've learned and that have been shared with me over the years broken into a couple of categories.

Dads in general
  • Workout during your lunch hour Monday thru Thursday; give yourself a set one or two days a week for business lunches.
  • Have one session with a personal trainer to help you design workout to best make use of your one hour in the gym.
  • Pack a lunch to work or get a premade quick meals from places like My Fit Foods (www.myfitfoods.com), typically more healthy than local fast food and you will be short on time if you can make your workouts.
  • Set goals for your workouts and share these with mom
  • Find a workout partner to help keep you motivated and on schedule
  • Schedule specific physical activities with your kids and not just random time; hiking, neighborhood walks, etc..
  • Go to the gym Saturday mornings as a family or some other physical related family activity
  • Get a good nights rest
More specific to single Dads
  • Workout everyday kids are visiting their mom, goal to schedule recovery time during days kids are home
  • As kids get older share your plan with them, kids love to help and will quickly get on board with getting dad healthy.
  • Be flexible with your single parenting schedule and daily demands as such, when my kids are home my week I typically only get 4 workouts in.
  • Nutrition, Nutrition, Nutrition: places like my fit foods have nutrition counselors, but avoid fast food like the plague.  You are not only eating for your health, but you are teaching your children eating habits by example.  I typically cook in bulk at least one meal prior to my children coming home in order to have healthy leftovers ready to go should we be short of time.  Kids love to cook and is a great way to spend some family time.
  • Focus on physical activity related adventures with your children: trail bike riding, playing sports, etc..
  • Get a good nights rest
Other ideas, suggestions, and ideas
  • Saw Palmetto supplement; promotes prostate health, can help sleep issues, and speaking guy to guy it can help keep everything in working order (try it before considering viagra)
  • Detox; suffering from fatige can be due to a build up of toxins.  Try this detox from My Fit Foods: 1 tablespoon of Apple Cidar Vinegar, 1 teaspoon of Lemon Juice, mix with 8oz of Cranberry Juice up to 3 times daily for 21 days.
  • Coffee replacement? We all know that you want to start each day by drinking a glass of water, but try a second cup mixed with Emergen-C.  The vitamin and minerals will wake you up without the jittery side effects of caffeine.
  • Alcohol; Good idea to just simply not drink when kids are home or at most 1 or 2 drinks as long as no driving is involved.  Having to explain to your children why you woke up naked cuddling with the dog is never a good example to set, plus they probably have a camera on their phone to use in later years.
  • Desert; watch out for the desert game in order to please your kids.  Desert schedules are a great idea, say on our family Friday movie, pizza, and desert night to limit this heavenly high calorie destroyer of wardrobes.
Keep up the effort, your family is counting on you.


1 comment:

  1. I'm not a guy, but these are great suggestions. Men tend to let pains and aches sit on the back burner, but sometimes those are little "signs" that things aren't so right. Men should get a complete work-up each year. Check cholesterol and sugar levels, plus other things that are just as important. The idea that you don't have time because you're too busy to go to the doctor is waaaay off. Your children need you just as much as they need their mothers. If single dad's need a break, find a friend that would be willing to help you out once a week for 2 hours. That way you can go "de-stress".


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