We all know fitness is important.  But when we have a family, we don’t always feel like we can fit exercise into our daily lives especially our weekends.  The best way to get in some extra activity is to plan activities that the whole family can participate in.  Most likely, you will have so much fun that you won’t even realize how much extra fitness you got in.  Here are 5 family fitness ideas to get you started.

Swimming

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Pack up the sunscreen and pool essentials, hop into your bathing suits, gather the family, and head to the pool.  Swim, play, and have fun.  You can burn 200 to 300 calories in just a half hour of leisure swimming.  The more you weigh, the more you burn.  So, spending the day at the pool playing with the kids can be really effective and won’t even feel like work.

Hiking

If you live near the mountains, consider going hiking.  There are some beautiful trails across the country and, chances are, you probably live near some.  Look up some of the trails closest to you.  Most trails have websites that will list how long they are and the difficulty level.  Choose one that works for your whole family.  Hiking can burn 400 to 500 calories in one hour. 

Sports

Playing a sports game is a great way to get outside for some fresh air, get in some fitness, and spend time with the family.  Choose something everyone can get involved with like volleyball, ultimate frisbee, or baseball.  There are a lot of different options so you need to take the ability level of your family members into consideration.  If anything, just get outside and throw a ball around, take a walk, or learn something new like tennis or golf.  Intense sports that involve a lot of movement can burn anywhere from 400 to 600 calories in one hour.  Even golf can burn 400 calories on average in 9 holes and that is with riding in a golf cart.  You can burn as much as 700 calories if you are walking.

Obstacle Course

Create your own obstacle course.  Get everyone in the family to suggest ideas and help put it together and then make a game out of running it.  Have everyone go and then time them and then see if they can beat their time.  If you are competitive, do it a few times and then have a contest to see who can go the fastest.  You can burn about 100 calories per mile plus some depending on your obstacles.  The best way to calculate is to run through your obstacle course once and see how long it is using a step counter or app.

Bike Ride

Go on a bike ride.  To start, take a bike ride around your neighborhood.  If you all really enjoy it, find local parks or trails to ride on.  Make sure everyone has good safety equipment on and watch the kids carefully if you will be riding on roads.  Kids don’t always pay close attention to what they are doing and cars don’t always pay attention, either.  I always prefer to take our bikes to a park or trail so I don’t have to worry about it.  Riding a bike leisurely can burn 250 to 350 calories an hour.

There are many active things you can do as a family and you should definitely make a habit of doing something active as a family frequently.  It will help you squeeze extra exercise into your week but, more importantly, it will teach your kids how important fitness is and how fun it can be. 

Are you looking for other ways to squeeze in some extra fitness? Check out Quick At-Home Arm Exercises and Quick At-Home Leg Exercises.

Do you have a great family fitness idea?  Comment below and let me know about it.

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