Tips for Running with Kids

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Running with kids sounds difficult, and let’s face it–It’s not easy most of the time.  However, this last year I decided that I would lead a more active lifestyle and find a way to make it work with my stage of life. Since I’m with my kids just about all day every day I needed to find a way to make my activity of choice work for all of us. My excuses for not running in the past were still there and seemed to grow exponentially now that I was mom.  So, I found a way work through those challenges. I didn’t have all of the answers in the beginning, I learned a lot of these tips from other running moms, and learned some through trial and error. So if you are thinking about running with kids or are looking for solutions to the common challenges…this list is for you!

The following is a list of solutions to the challenges I have faced while running with my kids:

1. It’s Too Hot:

-Dress kids in breathable clothing but pack a light jacket just in case

-Pack a spray bottle filled with water

-Bring a stroller or handheld fan

-Supply frozen yogurt tubes, or other cool snacks

-Provide ice water in sippy cups

-Bring accessories to keep sun out of eyes: hat, sunglasses, adjustable stroller shade

-Run near a water park so EVERYONE can have fun when the run is done

2. It’s Too Cold/Rainy:

-Dress the kids in layers, hats, gloves and blankets over laps, pack a couple extra blankets just in case

-Invest in a rain cover for your stroller, it will also keep your phone protected

-Bring a warm snack, hot chocolate for older kids

3. It’s Too Dark:

-Everybody dresses in bright colors

-Attach flashing lights to your stroller

-Purchase headlights for the kids to wear

-Willing parties can wear glow stick necklaces, bracelets etc

-Run on streets with Christmas lights during December

3. Running is Too boring:

-Play the “Stop Sign” Game (enter in quotes whatever visible landmark is available), as soon as a kid sees a stop sign yell “go mommy go!”

-Bring the kids books to read

-Bring handheld game device, phone, ipad, etc

-Find other moms to run with so you can support and encourage each other…they understand how hard yet rewarding it is too

-If your kids to tend to fight while in the stroller: run with another mom with kids and pair up personalities that get along with each other.   Joel actually asks me to run so he can ride with his friend, lol

4. Too much of a hassle:

-Pack up everything needed in car or stroller for the run: clothing, snacks, drinks, entertainment items ahead of time,

-At the end of a run have a special treat for everyone to look forward to: a healthy protein filled “chocolate milkshake” is what we call that treat in our house

-Kids can watch a special show while mom showers

-Days that I run become Crockpot dinner days

The Goal: Make it as enjoyable for everyone as possible so you are more likely to keep running!

What challenges/tips do you have to add to this list?

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