Health & Wellness Articles

Help Your Loved Ones Stay Healthy

Random Acts of Fitness, Nutrition and Health

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If you’re not comfortable with talking to loved ones about the touchy subjects of health and weight loss, you can still help them lead healthier lives by practicing “random acts of fitness.” There are dozens of small things you can do every day to make healthy living as easy as possible. Sometimes, you end up helping create good habits without them even realizing it.

And in the true spirit of being a positive force, when you give your time and energy with any of these random acts, you get just as much in return.

Some ideas (in random order of course):
  • Keep a variety of foods in the kitchen.
  • Make sure you talk to them about other things besides weight loss and fitness.
  • Stock kitchen with healthy cookbooks, leaving them where people can find them.
  • Get the junk food out of the house.
  • Plan an active activity after dinner.
  • Make it a habit to play outdoor games together.
  • Plan a cooking date.
  • Cook at least three times a week for the household.
  • If you already cook, cook healthier foods for the family.
  • Maintain an upbeat attitude.
  • Invite them to take part in a fundraiser that supports something important to all of you.
  • Get a physical and urge them to do the same.
  • Give “active” gifts, like personal training packages, a bicycle, roller blades, etc.
  • Make a bet.
  • Use positive language all the time.
  • Be straight up and let them know you’re concerned about their health.
  • Start a garden that you can work on together.
  • Plan a “surprise” hike.
  • Suggest walking more than driving.
  • Take everyone on a canoe trip.
  • Make their exercise a priority. Wash their gym clothes without being asked, do a chore for them so they have time. Make it easy for them.
  • Sneak healthy snacks and a friendly note (maybe even a love note) into their lunch, briefcase, jacket pocket or purse.
  • Prepare their favorite dish in a healthier way.
  • Opt for activities as an excuse to spend time together.
  • Ask them to help you stay on track.
  • Turn off the TV and hide the remote.
  • Give big, positive attention to changes that are made.
  • If it’s your turn to pick, choose a healthy restaurant or one that’s within walking distance.
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About The Author

Mike Kramer Mike Kramer
As a writer and artist, Mike has witnessed countless motivational stories and techniques. See all of Mike's articles.

Member Comments

  • It just doesn't work with my sister s she will not change her life to get fit. Her words are "I can't live my life that way" Selfish or just not motivated, I don't know.

    In most of my friends houses the TV go on before the wash in the morning.

    Bang head against brick wall comes to mind.

    BTW, I loved reading this article - 1/29/2014 5:52:17 AM
  • Great article. But I wouldn't want to trick my live one's. I would just be honest with them about it. - 6/30/2013 8:29:51 AM
  • Pretty sure the only effect of turning off the TV and hiding the remote in my household would be a nasty fight. I guess not every suggestion fits every family.... : ) - 12/10/2011 3:27:21 PM
  • I agree that it's not a good idea to trick a person into dieting or exercise. A friend's husband found that out the hard way! Plan doing things together to strengthen what you have. Laying tricks and traps is for soap operas. - 12/10/2011 10:24:42 AM
  • I was surprised to find that I was already doing some of the things on the list. The difference being that I was doing them for me. My husband has gained weight since we got married (but since he was 6 ft tall and under 130 pounds at the time, it's a good thing). My children are both smack dab in the middle of the "normal" range according to their pediatrician. I started planning meals to save money and calories and I have tried to find ways to make their favorite meals healthier so they can still have what they like, but my waist doesn't suffer for it. I started exercising at home and often my children (and even occasionally my husband) come and join me. I love that they're supporting me and I love that they're getting healthier too. Good article, glad for additional ideas. - 5/23/2011 9:18:57 PM
  • MARAHAB
    I didn't trick my husband into dieting, but he was very enthusiastic about the new recipes I've tried! When he was diagnosed with diabetes he didn't realize the consequence and would buy himself large quantities of snack cakes & chips. At the time he went in to see about his back and leg, he was found to have a need for insulin. After back surgery, he has been following the spark diet with me, and really it is very close to the Diabetic/Heart Healthy diet. He is doing well, and has lowered the dose of insulin needed by half. He hopes to get back to being controlled by exercise and diet. I think having his sister lose her foot because of diabetic complications spurred his interest in improving his diet. - 4/11/2011 11:14:00 PM
  • I don't think it's fair to "trick" your loved ones into losing weight. It's better to be straight up, encouraging and always lead by example. - 4/11/2011 11:53:17 AM
  • Do you know how short my life would be if I hid the TV remote from the 3 males in my house??? (That's what "ballistic" looks like!) - 1/4/2011 1:13:53 AM
  • Overall, the article tried to be helpful but there's a huge mistake that just about everyone makes: 98% of the time it's not ever about the food!!!! Every single one of us eats how we feel, period. If we feel like junk, we eat junk.
    The biggest part of losing weight or getting healthy is changing how we think about life and our place in it, not about food. When we honor our Selves, we feed that Self with honor. When we dishonor our Selves, we feed that Self with shame.
    Spending time cooking means we matter enough to need this effort made, every time.
    For me, cooking from scratch is the best way I know how to show that I love my Self. - 12/12/2010 12:46:10 AM
  • PRAYERS4PEACE
    Medications to lower cholesterol can be dangerous due to a side effect that causes muscle wasting and can be deadly. It can be detected by a blood test. It should be done every three months. Ask your doctor about it after you read about your particular cholesterol lowering medication to see if it has the side effect. One of the symptoms is muscle pain. - 12/11/2010 11:25:56 PM
  • PRAYERS4PEACE
    I really enjoyed your article. I liked the ideas. I also like the fact that you tell me to not talk about it all the time, but to just support good diet and exercise! - 12/11/2010 11:22:13 PM
  • My husband, who is retired, is quite satisfied with being overweight. He even just went to the doctor and got a very good report: just a little low in HDL. Of course, he's on the cholesterol drugs, high blood pressure medicine, etc. I cook healthy, but he goes to the store and buys all the junk food to snack on. We used to walk, and he used to play golf, but now he mostly sits. He does complain about his back hurting and I have told him that if he could lose all the weight in his stomach, he'd feel better, comparing the condition to pregnant women having back aches. I cannot believe that his doctor doesn't bring up his weight. My doctor is always on me about mine. So nothing on the list of how to help your family members is something I could use in his case. I am going to read the other comments now because I'm sure there are others like my husband. - 12/11/2010 6:14:28 PM
  • This article came at an interesting time for me. My husband has never really struggled with weight the way I have. However, recently he has noticed that his Levis are tighter to button up. So he mentions that he needs to do something. He is a little funny about it though. He thinks he should still be able to eat whatever he likes (just half of it) and watch TV every moment he isn't working or sleeping. He has a desk job, so he sits all day. I would like to see him increase his physical activity, but the minute he starts to breathe a bit heavily, he says he can't do it.
    I would like some ideas to get him to be more active. - 12/11/2010 11:12:12 AM
  • POPPY360
    I'm not sure what to think of this article. My husband is much much heavier than I am. He already knows he needs to loose weight. He has kind of been working on it (inconsitently). He has lost some of the weight too. But I never want him to feel pressure from me. I personally don't do well if I feel pressured by someone else. In fact it will either make me mad or feel down (like I am not good enough as I am). I think things like buying him "active" gifts or taking him on a suprise hike would not go over well. It sounds underhanded and sneaky - indicating that I want him to do something without telling him straight out. I think he has to want to do it for himself, not me. I will give him encouragement if he does healthy things and praise him if he does loose some weight but I am not going to pressure him. And maybe he will want to join in if I am working on it for myself. - 12/10/2010 6:39:17 PM
  • While I think a lot of these ideas are great if you and your spouse are trying to lose weight together, or if you have children that you are trying to instill good health values into, I think it is also important to realize that health and wellness is a choice we all have to make. For example, I am trying very hard to be healthy and most of the things on this list have happened naturally as a result of my quest and general interest in active activities. However, everyone needs to make their own choice to become healthy or pursue a healthy lifestyle. Believe me, they know if they are overweight or out of shape. Some things like a "surprise hike" can be hurtful and manipulative. I think being supportive and running your household healthy are great ideas. But if someone hasn't decided that they are ready for the difficult, emotional roller coaster that weight loss can be, you need to let them to come to that decision on their own time table - just like you did. In the meantime, lead by example and don't be afraid to talk to them about your journey and what is going on with you (instead of telling them what should be going on with them). - 12/10/2010 11:22:20 AM

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