1) 1st thing in the morning before the kids are awake, which might be a challenge if you’re catching up on sleep or had a late Friday or Saturday night; or
2) you plan your workout around when your child/children are busy doing an activity or…
3) you take turns with your spouse and one person watches the kids while the other trains and then you switch, but then that prevents a great opportunity for you to train with your spouse.
So what do you do?
How about a little of all of these?
Some days you train before everyone’s up.
Some days you get your workout in while kids are doing their activity and best case you train with your partner (partner training is awesome).
Some days you take turns with your partner getting your workout in while the other watches the kids.
Some days the whole family trains together.
Which brings me to…PTO Family Boot Camp.
We’re in our 5th year of Change Your Body Boot Camps and after being asked numerous times if I’d ever do an adult – kid workout, and after one Nemo Blizzard canceled our “dress rehearsal” event, we held the PTO Family Boot Camp Workout last weekend and it was a major success. No one got hurt, everyone smiled & laughed, everyone sweat & had fun and everyone got 50min of cardio-core conditioning in (though some parents said it was the easiest 50min of cardio they’d ever done), while the parents got to hang out & train with their kids and other families and the kids were able to associate positive emotions with training and hard work (parents already know this, right?).
It had been 10+ years since I coached kids so I had to remember what it was like to work with kids again. What can/can’t they do? How do you talk to them? How do you keep them focused? How do you get adults a great & effective workout in while not going to fast for the kids? How do you keep the kids “engaged” without boring the adults?
Talk about losing sleep the night before preparing for this event.
What I learned?
Speak in bullet points (raise your hand if you want to have fun!).
Change science to kid friendly pictures (broad jumps work horizontal, bilateral hip power to frog jumping ability)
Set up rows & columns.
Assign partners (kid-adult).
Keep the reps short (kids only have so much reserves).
Use lots of dynamic movement (kids love to run around & especially crawl).
Use fun names and animal names (burpees, surprise in birthday cake, spiders, frogs, gorillas, crabs, …)
Teach basic skills that everyone needs (planks, running techniques, crawls, hops, jumps)
and add levels for different ability levels.
Be flexible to change on the fly.
Plan for long water breaks (2min+) as kids need it and you want to reduce injury risk with people you haven’t coached before.
Try to make the experience like an adventure (like Disney World does with Pirate stuff).
Have a game. You might even be able to do 50min of “tag”, but the adults would need a more specific warm up b/c they tend to sit more for work in my experience.
How can you play with your kids and still get your workout in?
Do warm ups together moving across 5-10 yards.
Keep reps short, 3-5 reps is a good starting point for strength & jumping exercises.
Keep planks or stability holds short, 10 seconds is a good aim.
Give enough rest b/w circuits 1-3min so everyone can keep form, especially the population you don’t train normally (in my case the kids).
Alternate standing exercises with on the ground exercises.
Change traditional exercise names to something fun (e.g. Overhead Squat is “be the Surprise in the Birthday Cake” move).
Play relays. Most everyone loves relays.
Do obstacle courses. Most everyone loves obstacle courses.
Play tag. Kids love tag and many adults too.
Use body weight movements & calisthenics.
Form is always important. This is an opportunity to teach a life skill.
Use animal moves & names.
High Five, smile & laugh a lot.
Don’t be perfect or try to be.
Aim for the long term goal of creating a family tradition of training together.
You can do this if its loose & structured, fun, something everyone can do together.
Have you ever trained with your family?
Everyone in the world has to train (exercise). Why not train with your family & friends sometimes so you can enjoy happy hormone highs together, create new stories and empowering change in your relationships, family tree and personal health.
What did you think of this blog post?
To learn more about our next PTO Family BC Workout, go here: http://bootcampboston.com/ptofamilybc
Want to get in your best shape? contact me now.
Have you ever trained with your family? If yes, comment below and tell me about it. I’d love to hear stories about other families training together b/c I think it’s cool.