Rabbit and 5 of my kids run every day too (6 if you count Lanie in the stroller) and even though we all prefer to run at different times of the day, we run in pairs and I always have at least one of them running with me.
There are things I’ve noticed since my family started running together that are definitely worth telling.
When I started running every day I was not new to running. Matthew(13) and I had been regularly competing in local 5K runs, and I was pushing Lanie in a jogging stroller (Lanie is another reason I run. I’ll explain that in another post later). Pushing that stroller, however, was taking so much out of me that I decided to do a little bit every day to build up more strength. Matthew joined me in that every day running challenge. Two days later, Sam(9) decided to start running with us and the day after that Ben(12) opted in too. Since then, Gabe(16) and Rabbit started up with our little running club. And just a few days ago, I bought Jesse(8) a pair of running shoes because he wants to start running with us too.
Kait doesn’t run with us because she’s out on her own but she runs every day too and joins us for 5k races.
And now Joe(19) is considering it.
A while back my sister and I were having a conversation about getting kids to be active. She said (and I’m paraphrasing here) that it should be a family thing and that she had this idea to start a family exercise program to get parents and children working together to achieve fitness goals.
And what she said is really starting to make sense because, while that wasn’t my goal when I started everyday running, I have noticed that in this short time of doing something hard together every single day our already bonded family has become considerably closer. We are setting goals together, encouraging one another, and holding each other accountable. We keep each other working toward something bigger. We keep each other running.
Running every day has become this huge bonding experience that I could never have predicted.
I’m not saying that you need to run everyday or workout or start this crazy, sweaty, heart pounding program to bond with your kids. What I am saying is that doing something hard with your children, setting goals with them and meeting those goals with them, being proud of what you have accomplished together… This is the kind of stuff that binds people. And while they grow up and morph into adults in the blink of an eye, and it sometimes seems like there is not much you have in common with them anymore, you’ll have this big thing to give you that common ground.
I am really having trouble figuring out how to end this post so I’m just going to leave it at this.
Don’t be afraid to do hard things with your children.