Category Archives: Sponsored Posts

Never Stop Playing

Play | happyfitmama.com

Running. Jumping. Digging. Walking. Skipping.

Playing.

I’m always amazed at kids. Their energy is endless. Their minds are so creative.

If you asked a child to “go play” what would they do?

Run. Jump. Toss. Kick. Skip. Hop. Use their imagination in countless ways making up the rules for new games and beyond.

Play is disappearing at home, in school and in communities. It’s hard to believe that 70% of moms played outside when they were kids whereas 31% of their kids play outside today.

31%!!! I was floored by that statistic.

As a kid it’s second nature to play. It’s what you do. You are in a constant state of motion. You don’t consider it exercise. But at a certain point in the life cycle, play takes on a different term. Movement becomes exercise. And in the process, a lot of people get turned off by it and stop doing it. Play becomes a dirty four letter word.

Little hikers | happyfitmama.com

I always thought that happened later in life but maybe it’s happening earlier?

Balanced and active play lays the foundation for a skilled, healthy, resilient and successful society. When we don’t have that foundation as a kid, what happens when you become an adult?

Like a lot of kids born in the 70s and 80s, we grew up playing outside. We were told not to come home till the street lights came on during summer vacation. We rode our bikes everywhere. My dad went so far to remove a piece of our TV so we couldn’t watch it during the summer. Back then it was the worst thing ever but now I think it’s quite funny. But you know what? We survived and thrived every summer because of it.

hiking | happyfitmama.com

Times are definitely different. Letting your kids wander around town all day long is kind of frowned upon by the authorities. But that doesn’t mean you should lock your kids in the house and never let them see the light of day!

With my kids, I’m teaching them to look at play and therefore, exercise, as fun. I want them outside every single day. It’s easy during the summer. Who wants to be inside on a gorgeous day? But with the school year about to begin, we’ll continue to find places of play. Sure they have gym class, recess and sports but there’s still room for more play.

kayaking | happyfitmama.com

We are fortunate to have a large backyard that is perfect for playing. Kicking the soccer ball around, digging in the dirt, swinging on their swings, playing catch or Frisbie – the possibilities are endless. Ron even made a zip line for the kids recently. Ok, we say it’s for the kids but Ron and I use it too. Now that is pure play fun!

Bike Riding |happyfitmama.com

Fueling play is just as important. CLIF Kid Zbar® has important nutrients for active kids. Made with organic ingredients and are non-GMO, there’s no high fructose corn syrup, artificial flavor or synthetic preservatives to make you wonder what exactly are you eating. It’s just the right portion size for kids in flavors that they love. And adults love them too. I’m quite fond of the Iced Oatmeal Cookie flavor. It’s so good!

CLIF Kid Z Bar happyfitmama.com

To see a great reminder of why play is so important, be sure to check out this CLIF Kid video.

The biggest thing is that my kids see Ron and I playing alongside them. By setting an example, they are more likely to follow along. How can I tell them to go play outside while I’m sitting inside working on the computer or watching TV? Our places of play are everywhere. The world is your playground. Play on it!

Kids love CLIF Kid ZBars!  happyfitmama.com

Make play a priority in your families life. Your kids need it!

What do you do to encourage play?

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.

A Day in the Life

Morning Run | happyfitmama.com

Disclosure: This post was sponsored by Garmin vívofit 2 through their partnership with POPSUGAR. While I was compensated by POPSUGAR to write a post about Garmin vívofit 2, all opinions are my own.

Two minutes before my alarm goes off, my eyes fly open. Time to wake up!

I tiptoe quietly downstairs. I do my usual morning routine and get dressed for a short run and weights workout before the rest of the family is awake and Ron has to leave for work. 7000+ steps registered on my Garmin vívofit 2, before most people are awake. Nice!

Once I get home, everyone is up and Ron is about ready to head out the door to work. We say good bye and then the kids eat breakfast and I can get started on mine. Today it’s a smoothie bowl.

Smoothie Bowl  happyfitmama.com

I gobble it all down before I hop in the shower and get dressed. I quickly clean up and wrangle the kids to shake a leg in getting themselves ready for school.

Kids dressed, lunches and backpacks packed, shoes and jackets on – it’s time to walk to school.

I deposit the kids at school and head home. Another 3000+ steps done.

Post runwalk step counter Garmin vivofit 2

I scurry around the house – stripping the sheets off the beds, starting a load of laundry and cleaning the bathroom – before heading to yoga class. Nathan, our teacher, reminds us to set our intention for our practice today. Mine is to stay present in the pose rather than thinking of my to-do list. For the most part, I’m successful except for the time when I’m staring at the arm of the girl on the yoga mat next to me. Is that a fly or mosquito tattoo?

I walk out of class lighter and happier. A run and now yoga – my day is complete! Of course, I have to stop for an iced coffee afterwards. Why are all yoga studios strategically placed next to coffee shops?

022

I hop back in my car and make a stop at the bank before heading home where I throw laundry in the dryer and another load in the washer. Then it’s time to do some writing. First it’s a freelance article. I’m the queen of procrastination so first I peruse Instagram, Facebook and pull up a podcast. OK – time to let the fingers fly!

I work for an hour before I hear a beep from my Garmin vívofit 2. Time to get up and move! It doesn’t care that I’ve already reached my personal goal of 12,000 steps/day. We all know that prolonged periods of sitting decreases your body’s production of fat-burning enzymes. By taking frequent, short walk breaks throughout your day, you can reverse that effect.

Garmin vivofit 2 - take a walk

On the days that I am home and not at my job as an Exercise Physiologist, I tend to park myself in front of the computer. It’s my time to get a ton of work done. I love that the Garmin vívofit 2 reminds me to GET UP! when I’ve been sitting too long. Another thing that I love? The battery lasts for one year – no need to charge it at all!

I scurry around doing more laundry, putting fresh sheets on everyone’s bed, start dinner in the crock pot and then make my own lunch. I throw together whatever I can find of leftovers. Everything but the kitchen sink lunches are my fav!

Lunch  happyfitmama.com

After lunch, it’s back to the computer to finish up another freelance article and to start a blog post. Before I know it, it’s time to pick the kids up from school. A brisk walk there and back gives me at least another 3,000 steps.

We come home, the kids eat a quick snack and then we leave to take Cooper for a short walk in the woods to burn off some extra energy. It’s a gorgeous day!

fall walk with the kids  happyfitmama.com

Once we get home it’s a flurry of homework, play and final dinner prep before sitting down to eat as a family.

Crock Pot Black Bean Quinoa Soup

I tackle the dinner dishes and school lunches for the next day while Ron tackles baths for the kids. We meet up for a bedtime story. Afterwards, I head to the computer to finish up some writing before shutting down my computer. Ron and I catch up on some TV for an hour or so before heading to bed. I check out my stats on the Garmin Connect App to see my sleep quality from last night – only 6 1/2 hours. Must get more sleep tonight!

Garmin vivofit2

I set my alarm and crash hard. Gotta get my sleep to do it all over again tomorrow!

What’s a day in the life like for you?

#WalkYourWorld with Earth Footwear {Giveaway}

#WalkYourWorld with Eath Footwear! You could win your own pair today!

This is a sponsored post as part of the Earth Footwear #WalkYourWorld Campaign. The opinions, as always, are my own. 

Life lesson #3245 – Don’t wear uncomfortable shoes.

I think I learned this lesson approximately 7 years ago. There was more than one time in my life that I bought shoes that were at least one size too small just because they were SO CUTE but they didn’t have my real size. I chalked it up to a sacrifice for wearing cute shoes and *trying* to be stylish.

While my feet did look cute, I was in complete agony and usually ended up barefoot at some point in the day or night. Most likely it was night…but that’s a story for another time.

Ladies, don’t wear cheap shoes and don’t wear the wrong size. Our feet deserve better!

With all my foot drama over the past few years, I’ve really embraced this life lesson. I’m not afraid to even go higher than my “normal” shoe size now if it means my feet are comfortable and happy. I’d love to wear my running shoes all the time or even go barefoot, there are some instances where “real” shoes are needed.

#WalkYourWorld with Earth Footwear!

Happy feet = happy life. True story.

That’s part of the reason I am so excited to share with you Earth Footwear! If you’re a shoe lover, and a comfort lover, you’re gonna be all over these shoes (keep reading for your chance to win your own pair of pure comfort!). When you find a brand that understands comfort, it’s truly a marvelous thing.

When I was approached by Earth Footwear to try their shoes last year, I became a fan immediately. Super cute shoes that actually feel good? Yes please!

Their new fall line does not disappoint. You can check out all their different styles HERE. When fall rolls around, I’m all about boots. I was looking for a new pair of black booties to replace a pair that no longer felt comfy on my feet. I wanted something that I could wear everyday with anything. The Odyssey delivered!

#WalkYourEarth Earth Footwear

The heel is just the right height – not too high that my feet start screaming at me after wearing for an hour. I love the buckle details that kind of make it look a little like a motorcycle boot. I’ve always wanted to be a biker babe. Well not really. Motorcycles scare me. But it sounds cool, right?

So how would you like to win a pair of your own Earth Shoes? Here are the styles you will have to choose from if you win :

EarthFootwearOdyssey

Odyssey –The booties that stands out from the pack with beautiful pleated leather details and wrap-around straps featuring laser-cut details. (value $160)

EarthFootwearBoot

Pepperidge–Modern in every way, with motorcycle-influenced styling inspired by the latest runway shows, but made perfectly right for everyday. (value $160)

EarthFootwear Pilot

Pilot–The essential update to the timeless Mary Jane with rich burnishing, laser-cut strap details and a petite metal accent for an extra dash of style. (value $109.99)

Follow the Rafflecopter prompts to enter. Giveaway is open to U.S. residents only. Good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway