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Fitness Tips to Help You Stay Sane Over Easter

03/23/2016 09:07 EDT | Updated 03/24/2017 05:12 EDT
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a easter nest with egg in the grass

I love the Easter long weekend. My kids are uber excited, there's magic in the air again, spring is on the horizon and well...the Easter Bunny is coming and who doesn't love the Easter Bunny?! I love to fill this weekend up with fun activities and as much magic as I can pull off in the four days I have to make memories with my family.

I did, however, learn something last year. All the excitement, all the sugar, all the late nights created a perfect storm for mega-meltdowns by Sunday afternoon and left us all worn out, irritable, lethargic and had us all (parent and children) throwing tantrums on Monday.

While most holidays are centered around food and family, I urge you to consider focusing this weekend around getting active together. And really, what better way to be active than as a family, surrounded by magic eggs?!

Here are a few ideas to help you plan an active long weekend:

Make a plan for physical activity. Sit down with your entire family on Friday morning and schedule your physical activity. Decide what activity would be most fun on each day (e.g. family hike, family swim, family workout at home, go to a family exercise class, etc.), make a physical activity plan and stick to it. If your kiddos are too young, make a plan for yourself that you know you'll enjoy. Be sure that you're creating a plan for 60 minutes of physical activity per day.

Easter Eggs-ercise Hunt. Instead of a regular Easter egg hunt where the eggs are filled with chocolate and candy, write a bunch of exercises on pieces of paper and put one piece in each egg. Have your kiddos find all the eggs, then open the eggs together to create your own family workout. Check out this super cute video to see how Hot Mama Health & Fitness did it for their kids. Make it fun and silly and reward your kiddos for participating when you're done.

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Chicken Dance. I'm not kidding. This is HILARIOUS for your kids and will get them moving and warmed up for their Easter Egg hunt sprints. Crank the chicken dance and get down with your bad selves. Be silly, be crazy. No one's watching except your kids, and to them you're hilarious. The added benefit: you're making memories for them so that every time they hear the chicken dance song, they'll think of their family and smile. Click here to get the song in your head for the day (you're welcome).

Have a "Magic Word". Choose a different word for each day of the long weekend that triggers some sort of quick exercise. Bunny, Easter, chocolate and egg have been favorites in my house. When someone says the magic word of the day, everyone has to stop what they're doing and complete the chosen exercise. For example, if the magic word is "bunny" and the exercise is 10 bunny hops, any time someone in your family says "bunny", everyone stops and does 10 bunny hops. Be creative with your activity and make it silly, fun and fast.

Schedule quiet time. I'm a big fan of having scheduled downtime. During a weekend of excitement and fun, it's important to remember that your kiddos can only go for so long until they hit a wall. And, hitting the wall is never fun (for both parent and child). So, be sure to protect their energy with some quiet moments throughout the weekend. Do puzzles, read a book together, snuggle in and watch a movie together. Rest. It's so important to both you and your kiddos.

I hope you have a wonderful long weekend and make lots and lots of fabulous memories. Stay active out there and be the healthy role model your kiddos need you to be.

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