Parents of Budding Athletes, Let’s Take the Snack Back!
Parents, let’s work together to refuel our kids with healthy snacks after athletic events!
My daughter is coaching a summer track program this year. I went out to watch a meet the other day. It was such fun to see her in the role of coach! It was almost as much fun watching the small children she coaches run as seeing her compete! It was great to see kids out doing something active and families supporting them. As I watched, I saw the familiar snacks come out after the meet. I know that many times my kids’ favorite part of a game was the snacks they were given after! I spent many days at our local track and soccer fields and remember the days of being “snack Mom” for the game. Snacks have become like everything else….kids want the newest and most advertised fruit roll up, juice box, or packaged cookie or cake. As I watched the kids run the other night, it hit me that we are missing the boat …when our children are participating in athletic events at a young age, we should be teaching them what is proper “refueling” snacks. What happened to the orange slices after the soccer game, or the bananas and peanut butter? Children are “refueling” with juice boxes and cookies, fruit snacks, and chips. We are sending only half the message to our children. Let’s take back the snack! As parents, let’s send the message to our children that healthy participation in activities is only part of the puzzle to a healthy lifestyle. Healthy snacks do “refuel” little bodies and taste good too. So, I challenge us all…when we coach, or when it is our turn to be the snack Mom, let’s bring that cut up fruit, bagels, peanut butter and crackers or even chocolate milk. Those types of snacks will refuel our child, will prevent them from melting down with a sugar low, and complete the picture of a healthy lifestyle… activity and healthy eating. You just might be surprised how the kids will gobble that healthier snack up and feel better after the activity because their little bodies are refueled. Take back the snack…be a proponent in healthy snacking at your child’s athletic events.
Take a breath, enjoy the joyful moments of each day, and remember you don’t have to be perfect to be the perfect parent.