Friday, June 19, 2009

My water babies

As we all know, holidays are notorious for weight gain. This is true not just for adults but also for kids. Andre especially, has a propensity to expand his girdle during the school holidays, since he doesn't engage in the usual running around like a mad fool at school and has ready access to snacks at home. This is despite his badminton training.

So these June holidays, I decided to nip the problem in the bud. I instituted an "exercise everyday rule" for Andre, ie he has to engage in some physical activity of at least half an hour everyday, whether it's badminton, jogging, swimming or cycling. As it turned out, it's been like a sauna lately - some days, it's simply unbearable to be sitting at home in 32 degree heat and humidity. So the kids have been spending a lot of time in the pool.

And I've re-discovered all over again what a great skill swimming is. It really is one of the best sports around - it uses a wide range of muscle contributing to overall fitness, it poses practically no risk of sports injuries and it gives cool relief to boot! In one of my early posts, I shared how my kids learned swimming. I can't stress how important it is to have kids learn this invaluable sport at an early age. Somehow, when they acquire this skill young, they take to it, pardon the pun, like a fish to water. That's my sense anyway.

For Lesley-Anne, exercise doesn't come easily. She lacks stamina and her bane is running 1.6km under the annual NAPFA test. Swimming is therefore an ideal sport for her. Even though I didn't impose the daily exercise rule for her, she recognises the value of exercise and has initiated going down to the pool to do laps. Each session, she swims anything from 20-30 laps (1-1.6km) which is a great workout. Funnily enough, she says she finds it easier to swim 1.6km than run it!

Andre loves the pool. For him, exercise is not a chore, it's fun and swimming is a great way to supplement his badminton training.

What Kenneth does is to make Andre swim laps (from 8-16) and in between laps, he climbs up the side of the pool and does some crunches and push ups, as his badminton coach has commented that he needs to work on his strength.

So in the end, he enjoys himself, develops his fitness and builds strength all at the same time.

And the best part? In the water, sibling rivalry is almost always forgotten!


Alcovelet said...

What an athletic family! L-A doing 20-30 laps each day - great stuff! I used to do that once upon a time, so I can tell you it really helps the stomach muscles later, esp after the baby pops. She may not want to hear this yet, keke. And Andre. Whoa! Crunches and pushups in between laps? He's a star athlete, this one. Seriously, nobody can link the idea of the taf club with Andre.

Way to go!

monlim said...

Ad: When you say atheletic family, you exclude me, right? Hehe... Partly because I'm so unathletic and always huffing and puffing in school all the way to adulthood, I want my kids to maintain the sporting habit early.

You used to swim laps? No wonder you're so trim now! Envious flabby mum here :P

Lilian said...

They really look like they're having lots of fun. You and Kenneth did a great job encouraging your kids to be sporty. The photos of Andre doing his sit-ups and push-ups, looks really pro man, can't believe he's only 9. Puts me to shame. Well done!

breve1970 said...

Envious flabby mummy no. 2 here!

Aiyah... Mon, you work out at the gym too and you are loads trimmer than me! I have not done YOGA for a year and maybe thats why my imbalance is back. Horrible feeling and I have not been reading all these great entries by you ladies for a while.

monlim said...

Lilian: That's why must start young mah... by the time get to our age, gone liao! Start Sean and Brian too, then next time, they'll be brainy AND hunky, hehe.

Ann: I drag my feet to the gym :P Yup, it's tough to restart once the momentum is lost. Keep at it! Yoga is great for balance and flexibility.

bACk in GERMANY said...

Hey.... Andre looks just like you Mon, in last photo.

Yes, cooling off is a good idea, given the heat now.

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