How You can Help Your Teen Stay Fit

by Leo Cartland
teen boy and girl staying fit and lifting dumbbells

It’s tough to be a teenager in today’s world, especially when you’re trying to stay healthy. It seems the entire planet is specifically fine-tuned to throw constant distracting monkey wrenches into your health plan. If you’re a man over 25, you probably have a relative in their teens who, though they may not say it outright (what teenager does?) thinks about their physical health all the time. You likely want a way to help them, and that’s what this article is here to help with. So, without further ado and in no particular order, here are the top ways that teens can stay fit in this increasingly automated world.

#1. Remind them to take it slow

We live in an age of impatience. For all the genuine good and irreplaceable benefits the internet has brought us as a global society, it has taught an entire generation, as well as the upcoming generations, that they should expect everything to come quickly. Even if they know they need to work for it, their expectations is that even if the work is hard, it won’t be long.

Thankfully, this is easier to help work out of your teen’s system than aging sneering pundits would have you believe. The trick is to help and support your teen along the way, every step. Remind them that staying fit has no set deadline, that it isn’t a simple workout and then receiving results. To stay fit, if you currently are not is to change one’s entire lifestyle and approach to how they view their bodies. So be sure to remind them that this is something they need to take slow.

#2. Find what works for them

teenaged boy playing basketballThe biggest problem with how education is done in this world most of the time, is that it fails to account for the fact that not everyone learns and processes information the exact same way. Different kids have different speeds and methods of learning, whether it comes to their schoolwork or, really anything. And this includes fitness. Some are runners, who will be drawn to daily exercises on the treadmill. Others prefer weight lifting, and will be drawn to casually lifting weights while watching T.V. If your teen doesn’t already know what they like in terms of exercising, there’s no harm in trying out everything and seeing what sticks. This is the kind of trial period where you can totally just throw everything at the wall to see what sticks.

#3. Set a schedule

Unless you have a particularly studious child, who loves setting schedules and always keeps to them, your teen may need some help keeping to their exercise schedule.  Remember, this is a huge paradigm shift in how they approach their lifestyle, and even if they’re serious about it, they’re going to need help. Set a schedule, and keep them to it. Whether it be a paper written daily schedule pinned to the fridge where no one can forget it, or a set schedule with reminders on both of your phones, whichever you think will help you both stay on track the most. Typically all you’ll need is the schedule and a means of reminding yourselves should life get in the way. Speaking of…

#4. Let life get in the way once in a while

Your teen going on a school trip? Heading out on a family vacation? Just graduated high school? Let that be a cheat day. Holidays make the best cheat days for your fitness schedule, because, well, it’s a special occasion. And the best part about cheat days is being able to indulge yourself for a day. Of course you should be sure to have cheat days in the months without holidays or special occasions, just to make sure your teen doesn’t overwork themselves. Fitness is important, but so is fun.

#5. Get involved yourself

mom running with teenage kidsThat waistline of yours could always be more toned, anyway. But in all seriousness, the one barrier that may bar your teen from getting more physically active, even if a part of them wants to, is a feeling that they’re the only ones expected to do so. Especially if, pardon the bluntness, you yourself are a bit on the hefty side. As a show of good faith, commit to your own fitness routine. It doesn’t have to be the same, just knowing that they aren’t the only ones pushing themselves like this can have a tremendously positive impact.

#6. Buy training equipment

In all honesty, this is the first thing you need to do. Can’t very well get in shape if you don’t have the equipment to do so. Now this doesn’t mean you have to go out and buy a treadmill, but if you don’t live near enough to a gym for regular trips to be convenient, then you’ll have to make your own exercise. You shouldn’t need a whole lot, depending on what parts of the body your teen needs to work on. Some weights, exercise clothes, and other assorted gear should get you through just fine. Be sure to take your teen shopping and pay attention to what catches their eye. It may be a clue as to what kind of exercise you should focus on.

We all want our teenagers to stay in shape, as our world becomes more automated. And these tips will help you do just that. The main takeaway from this should be to give your kid 100% support with this decision, because at the end of the day, it’s their decision to make. You can show this respect by getting involved to encourage them along the way, helping them keep on track, reminding them to take it slow, and letting them off the hook every once in a while so they can enjoy themselves. And of course, making sure they have the correct gear and equipment to do it helps quite a bit.

Encourage your teens to stay active, stay fit, and stay healthy, and they’re due for a long, productive, healthy life.

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