Season’s Over, Now What?
Your daughter just finished a 5K. 3.1 miles. That is an amazing accomplishment. She’s eating healthier, has more self-confidence, and you want her to keep it up. But Spring season doesn’t start until March. What to do? Take over as her Coach. As her parent, you are the perfect person to serve as her role model and to hold her accountable for living up to the GOTR standards. This past season your daughter learned how to:
- Have a strong sense of identity
- Give and receive support from a group
- Stand up for herself in a healthy manner
- Have a healthy body image
- Understand the importance of her community
- Complete a 5k run/walk event
How can you make sure she holds true to these before next season starts? It’s easy! Just use these 6 simple steps.
- Identity – Do you know the best way to help your daughter know who she is? Talk to her. She needs your help and guidance to craft her own sense of self. Check out this website for some tips: http://voices.yahoo.com/helping-children-develop-strong-sense-identity-8418135.html
- Teamwork – While participating in Girls on the Run this past Fall, your daughter learned the meaning of teamwork. She learned that sometimes by helping others, we can help ourselves. This important life lesson will help her build skills that she will use for the rest of her life. How do you help her continue learning these skills? Go to these sites for some great teamwork-building games and activities: http://ethemes.missouri.edu/themes/1045 and http://www.momtastic.com/parenting/features/125536-3-ways-to-teach-teamwork-without-letting-your-kids-know-they-are-learning
- Standing up for themselves – In Girls on the Run, we talked a lot about respecting ourselves and each other as well as about how to avoid bullying and gossip. But let’s face it; in this day and age it seems that no child is immune to the harmful effects of bullying and gossip. How can you reinforce this information at home? Other than reviewing the blogs on bullying and gossiping, you can go to these websites for helpful tips and advice: http://teachmama.com/2010/11/quick-trick-teaching-kids-to-stand-up-for-themselves.html and http://thestir.cafemom.com/big_kid/124982/8_ways_to_teach_your
- Having a healthy body image – Although we only spent one lesson on this topic, given the increasing rates of disordered eating attitudes and behaviors in our Nation, the importance of this topic cannot be over-emphasized. A preteen who accepts and loves herself is a teen who accepts and loves herself, and a teen who accepts and loves herself is an adult who accepts and loves herself. The best thing you can do to help your daughter maintain a healthy body image is by doing this yourself. Every time she hears you comment about your weight or something you don’t like about yourself, she takes that to heart and begins to look at herself for ‘flaws.’ Don’t let this happen. Love and accept yourself, if not for your sake, for your daughter’s sake. Remember the positive self-talk blog? Go re-read it. And checkout these 5 tips: http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/health/2012/04/25/5-ways-to-teach-kids-about-healthy-body-image/
- Volunteering – In last week’s blog, we covered the importance of volunteering and I hope you’ve taken some of those tips to heart. When your daughter helps her community, she learns not only that she has something of value to offer others, but also that there are others worse off than she is. So the next time she’s having a bad day, she can remember that her day, as bad as it seemed, really wasn’t all that bad. Please refer back to last week’s blog for tips on keeping your daughter active in her community.
- Staying active – One of the most important lessons your daughter learned in Girls on the Run was about staying active. Active girls are active teens. Active teens are active adults. Notice a pattern here? Physical activity rates begin to decline as children enter puberty, and we all know that once a habit is made, it tends to stick around, but once it is broken … Yes, it’s getting colder out and yes, the weather may turn yucky soon, but there are still plenty of things your daughter can do to stay active. Check out these tips http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/fitness/FL00030 and remember that you are your daughter’s best role model. How can you expect her to stay active if you are not? So get off the couch and do some family activities together!
From all of us at Girls on the Run, I would like to Thank You for letting us coach your daughter this Fall. We hope you both got a lot out of this season and we look forward to seeing you and your daughter back in March.
Stayed tuned for next week’s topic: Fun Winter Activities
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