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Out Of Shape Kids...
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Amen! I'm a PE teacher and I am all for 2 recesses a day, regular PE, minimal or no junk food in schools and for parents to join with their kids walking, running, bike riding, swimming, etc. It is up to the parents to make sure that their kids are getting exercise and not spending 5 hours a day watching TV or playing video games. And high schoolers need PE daily - not just the kids in sports.

Beginning in (I think) 2007, all public schools that get any kind of federal funding must have a wellness plan in place. That means they have to figure out how to help their students get healthy by making sure they have recess and PE and have healthy lunches. This is a step in the right direction, but I'm afraid a lot of schools will get around it by having a plan, but not implementing it completely. Big junk food companies make a LOT of money from schools with their machines and don't want to be kicked out of those schools. I'm hoping that they will be accomodating by offering bottles of 100% juice, water, packages of dried fruit, trail mix, etc.

If you are a parent - go for a walk with your kids, even if it's just for 15 minutes! Go play in the snow, go swimming, get out your bikes, do curlups and pushups during commercials while you're watching TV, run up and down the stairs 4-5 times during commercials, there's lots of ways you can get exercise with your kids. If you can't get outside easily, go walk at a mall (this can be dangerous with teenaged girls) or find someplace you can all go inside.

By now, everyone knows what's healthy and what's not. Fast food is NOT! White flour, white sugar, hydrogenated oils, fried foods, candy and pop are fine for treats once in a while, but not for daily consumption.

Okay, I could go on, but I think Jnkmnky said it all pretty well.

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I agree. It's a sick, discusting disaster. Kids today are sitting around playing video games instead of basketball or hide and seek or roller skating, etc. I always have a hard time finding clothes that fit because everything in the stores is made for fat people. Even when I was in first grade I was eating peanut butter sandwiches with whole wheat bread, with fresh fruits and so forth, while all the other kids I could see in the lunch room ate chips, ice cream, soda, chocolate milk, pudding, donuts, etc. If they ate a sandwich, it was a half sandwich with crappy white bread, and the crust was cut off! As time went by they just got fatter and fatter. I was sick a lot as a kid because of gluten, but at least my mother knew how to make sure to get the best that was available and within the buget.

People today don't generally grow a garden full of veggies and send the kids out to tend it. Kids playing outside seems like a thing of the past. It's all about sitting at the computer and/or playing video games, chatting online, and swapping mp3's.

I remember one school actually trying to get a McDonald's put in where the cafeteria was!

It amazes me that people are all fat and out of shape because of all the modern conveniences, then they pay a doctor to find out what's wrong, then pay more to go to a gym and try to work off all the flab. If they just had an active lifestyle in the first place, they'd not need to try and find time to "exercise". Then of course those three pushups are "so much hard work", they quit and stay fat.

I think someone should start a workout gym, but put it on the top floor of a tall building, and shut off the elevators.

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[i think someone should start a workout gym, but put it on the top floor of a tall building, and shut off the elevators.

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I laugh at the people who go to the recreation center in this town to work out but spend time circling the lot to get a parking place close to the front doors! :lol:

Yeah, and to think those same people can't seem to find time for that home decorating project they keep putting off, or the hedge that needs trimming, repainting the kitchen, etc.

Seems to me that if one parent stayed home and planted a garden or did home-schooling, they could cut the cost of a second vehicle, daycare for the kids, have time to make good healthy meals, less aches and pains to pay a doc to prescribe expensive meds for, lose the flab, and create a generation of healthy children to improve the overall standard of living rather than a generation of drop-outs and lazy sniveling brats, which is what they actually hoped the second job would help them achive anyway. Time should have well established by now that it doesn't work that way. You can't buy health and happiness.

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My son gets a 1/2 hour recess in the AM and a 1/2 hour after lunch plus gym 2-3 times a week. The public school system he is in is considered one of the best in the country. There is a big emphasis on physical fitness. All of the surrounding school districts have little or no recess and they are among the worst in the country. I learned almost nothing in the classroom that had any lasting value. However the lessons learned on the playground were far more valuable. The playground is where you learn that not all people are created equal, get treated the same and that life is never fair. Once you understand these facts of life and how to interact with others, then you have a foundation for success. The academic stuff is secondary.

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Kids are eating too much, eating crap, and not moving.

I definitely agree with that jnkmnky. I look back on my 'brief' stint of babysitting and couldn't believe what the kids ate and what foods were in their house. Not having a recess?? I couldn't imagine that! I worked in a school system for Head Start for a year, was grossed out by some of the henious foods they were served! Anyone see 'Supersize Me?' There is an interesting portion of the movie on school lunches etc.

One person who is doing is right I think is my sister-in-law. We babysat our niece and nephew last weekend and Mikayla opened the fridge, saw blueberries and raspberries and started begging for them. To them, fruit is a sweet treat, not 2nd to cookies etc. I was amazed! And encouraged. My SIL also does things like water-down their juices etc.

ps--way to go for your son! he is one empowered kid!

(reminds me of meeting with my principal and 'team' i assembled in grade school for our school to start recycling. he laughed at me :( )

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As a working single mom of now-adult kids:

Neither of mine are/were overweight -

I kept them active in sports and

watched what they ate and drank

at home (since I purchased and prepared the food).

The schools phased out recess by middle school.

(Yeah... that's the age when they don't need breaks! <_< )

Fast food was a treat

when I had the extra funds, not

a solution to dinner dilemas.

And of course, not able to afford

hiring outside help - we all worked

on the house/yard together.

But as I see my friends using

the tv, pc and gaming equipment

as electronic babysitters - is it any

wonder??

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alicia-

good for you, sounds like your kids are doing well!

jnkmnky-that's a great idea. so far i'm impressed with your school :)

oh, and one more thought on my mention of 'head start'. when i started they told me i was supposed to sit down and eat each meal with the kids and that the kids needed to see me eating the same food. that was pre-celiac, but gasto issues aside, there was no way in hell i was going to eat that food! i tried to sit down with them at meal time, but i didn't eat the food. looking back my weight and sick days would have gone up!

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Talk about cutting back to stay home......when Emmie was really sick, I felt a real need to stay home with her. We cut off cable, changed to dial up internet, cut back to one car, I quit getting my hair done, and dh gives the boys their cuts (saves $30 a month!). It was hard, and my mom doesn't see how I survive w/out cable, lol, but we are used to it now. Life is very simple, and it's actually nice. Instead of watching tv all day, we'll play a boardgame. And if a good kid movie does come on tv, they kids think it's a real treat and truly savor every minute. When they do go to their grandparents house, I expected them to just be glued to all the cartoons, but they really could have cared less. The went right to the backyard and played soccer.

Jack's school has also cut back on recess, and cut it out all together if it's a test week. We have complained to the principal, but nothing has happened. They get P.E. twice a week, which I don't think is nearly enough for kids. Jack comes home a complete grouch, and he is burned out. And they offer complete junk to the kids for lunch. Alot of parents complained that they couldn't dictate what their kids picked from the lunchline (even in kindergarten), which was against school policy. I do not understand why they offer CRAP in the first place. Hmmmmm....green beans or ice cream, what's a kid going to choose? We usually pack Jack's lunch, and let him buy on pizza day for a treat.

This epidemic of childhood obesity and diabetes should not come as a surprise at all. Kids are not active these days.......I hardly EVER see kids outside playing anymore. My sister lives in Australia, and was shocked at how little activity Jack got during the day at school. Her kids have sports during schooltime, even in gradeschool.....physical activity is just a way of life over there. We've actually considered moving the whole family there for a bit, I lived there for a while too and I absolutely loved it. It's a completely different lifestyle, and America could learn a thing or two from other countries. When my sister came for a visit to the states after a five year absence, she was shocked at how fat the people were. It's just not something she really sees over there that often! Interesting I thought.

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If I have kids, I'll work. Not because I have to, but because I want to. And I don't think there's a problem with that. (Not saying anyone here has said it's wrong, just working my way through the statement of my opinion on this topic.) But whether a parent doesn't work, works because he or she has to, or works because he or she wants to, that's no excuse for neglecting your kids - and feeding them crap and not requiring any physical activity is, in my mind, pretty much neglecting them. Perhaps not per the legal definition, but per a logical one, I really think it is.

It's a matter of priorities, and there's a nearly infinite list of things - including housework - that come *lower* on the list than providing your kid with good food, good learning experiences, and good exercise. Paying the bills to keep the heat on and a roof over their heads may come slightly higher, but there's give and take in what roof it is as well. Coming from a profession where overtime - at least sometimes - is a given, I understand there are pressures to always get other things done, but hey... if you've got kids, you're an adult, and you've got to be responsible about it.

I agree, eliminating recess is damaging to the health (and social development) of children. Not only that, there are things that you can do outside while playing that reinforce what you learn inside a classroom. (Fancy that, hands on experience!)

But in this age of convenience - including convenience devices for raising our kids (games) - I worry it won't change.

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As a member of the formerly obese club I notice much more how fat and out of shape most people are. It seems that more and more people I know complain that they just can't keep up with me anymore.

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Tamara--wow, the sacrafices you've made are really inspiring! And as Tiffany has discussed--you really made your kids your first priority! Good to hear stories like that. I love this forum b/c I see so many ways of living life--gives me much to think about!

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