If it hasn't already started, it will soon. Our kids will be back to school and whether you public, private, or homeschool, all of our routines will be changing! Part of those routines will be how we re-work the way we keep our families (and ourselves!) healthy during the school year. I've found it advantageous to take a couple hours when the house is quiet (which in my case, means a coffee shop!) and outline/list a few things that will help me before the crazy schedules start. Here are some of my top tips to help you hit the ground running and prepared for this year!
1) Get reacquainted with your pinterest boards!
Re-organize it if you need, but make sure you have some boards that are easy for you to access such as "crockpot," "after-school snacks," "healthy family meals," and more. When I am having a crazy week, it is so nice to click one of my boards and locate a recipe I've already pinned!
2) Figure out when your meal prep and planning night will be. (Not necessarily the same day)
Every family will look a little different here as you may not need or want to meal prep as much as another family, but to some extent, having fresh cut veggies and portioned out nuts really helps when you are ready to run out the door. Meal planning is also a huge key to my ease during the school year. If you can't nail down a specific night that you will have certain meals, at least keep the ingredients and recipes for 3-4 meals handy so you can quickly grab them when you need to.
3) Include your family
Sometimes I forget that as each year passes, my kids' age also increases which means they can help me out more! I involve them in some of the food prepping and have even begun to have them help me choose what we should eat for different meals! This might be the year for you to have some extra hands in the kitchen!
4) Outline when and where you will do your workouts
Be very realistic here. If you can only do 3 days a week, then do those 3 days with confidence! Make the phone calls to the gym or local churches to find out when and how much their classes are. Call a FRIEND to meet up with you. I'm telling you--you will never just "fall" into a workout. I love working out and I still don't have that happen! A little effort on the front end will help you as you are going through it.
5) Put those pinterest boards to use (again!)
I'm sure you have a board with tons of pins waiting to be used, right? Well, now is the time to print some of those things off and implement them! Get a cute little notebook, or screenshot the pics from your smartphone so that you have a little database of things to reference. Come October, you'll be looking for something to revive your routine! (Of course, you can always keep in contact with my site to keep you inspired!)
6) Get fit with the family!
As I mentioned before, with a new season of life, our family dynamics change, so this may mean that you can do some fun activities with your family! Keeping them fit and active is very important too! Are your kids old enough to train and run a 5K with you? Find one you can all sign up together! Is there a free night you all have together? Huddle in the basement and have the kids put you through a 20 minute workout! If your kids are training for their own sports--PERFECT! Join them! What better time to connect with them, than during a run outside, some sprints, or an ab routine. Show 'em that mom can keep up!
7) Consider reading or leading a Christian book/study on spiritual health
Try Candace Cameron Bure's, "Reshaping It All", or Lysa Terkeurst's, "Made to Crave". If your church isn't able to lead these up, then pray about starting this with a couple of your friends. Keep yourselves accountable spiritually and physically! (Be on the lookout for my 5-week "Living and Active" challenge which will do just this, towards the end of September!)
8) Commit to praying or reciting scripture during your workout
I run through a lot of scriptures--and say lots of breathless prayers during my workouts! Maybe it's time for you to consider your workouts more than just a time to beat your physical body. Maybe it's time to amp it up and enrich your soul!
9) Be intentional about letting your kids see the reason why you are taking care of your health
Maybe we need to back up a bit. Maybe you need to put some thought into why you have decided that you and your family's health is important! Once you've figured that out, be open about the real reasons you choose to wake up and workout, or prefer them to eat veggies over chips. They are going to learn a viewpoint about health and their soul from someone--why not have them learn it from you?
If you have any other back-to-school tips that you could share, please do so below! I am always learning and am ready for some new ideas, myself, so don't be shy!