With schools nationwide closed for the foreseeable future, families are continuing to adjust to spending a lot more time together. From juggling homeschooling and childcare with ever-changing work commitments, having time to fit in a run may feel like a stretch right now.
Keeping active doesn't just make us physically strong, but protects our mental health and reduces our stress levels - not just for us, but our children too. If you can, exercising safely means the whole family will reap the rewards.
Stuck for ideas? We’ve put together our top tips to help your family stay well and keep active responsibly during this challenging time.
Set aside time to exercise together
Make the commitment, make it happen! Not only will you be building healthy habits and leading by example, but it’s also the perfect time to strengthen those family bonds.
For younger children, encourage them to ride their bike or scooter while you run your regular route. With older children, a family run is a great opportunity to check-in and see how they’re doing.
Get involved with Paula Radcliffe’s 'Families at Home' challenge
Marathon runner Paula Radcliffe debuted her ‘Families on Track’ programme last year, designed to encourage families to enjoy exercising together.
Reimagined as the ‘Families at Home’ challenge in light of the pandemic, families are encouraged to complete either 1k, 3k or 5k together - either indoors or outside in the garden. After marking out the distance of each lap, everyone takes turns to run until the full distance has been completed. Shout about your progress online using #familiesathome.
Make exercise into a game
In need of a bit of competition? Why not set up an obstacle course outside, then challenge the kids to the race. While you do laps of the garden, they take turns running laps of the obstacle course - you could even include it as part of the 'Families at Home' challenge.
If you don't have a garden, set up an obstacle course for the kids indoors while you run up and down the stairs or challenge yourself with an on the spot workout. Celebrate with homemade medals for the race champions.
Check out #StayInWorkOut by Sport England
Sport England have launched the #StayInWorkOut initiative, encouraging families to keep active during the lockdown. It’s full of ideas to keep the kids active, from Disney themed dance-alongs to fully accessible activities that can be done indoors.
Why not sign up to imovement, which provides daily active learning sessions? It’s completely free for parents with 4-11 year olds and incorporates learning with physical activity - ideal for adding some exercise into the home school schedule.
Have we missed a tip or trick you've recently discovered? How do you keep up your active routine? Let us know below.
Stay Safe, Keep Active, Run Responsibly.
*Images together taken pre-social distancing regulations