It's just about that time, spring is right around the corner! As the weather is getting nicer, we are not the only ones eager to spend more time in the great outdoors, our pets are as well! Let's shake off that hibernating spirit and find some ways that our pets and us can work to get in shape!
Shaking Those Winter Blues With Your Pet:
- De-Stress Walk - Taking the time out of your day to simply walk with your dog can help relieve stress and give you a great low intensity workout.
- Cardio Walk - Challenge yourself and your dog with changing paces throughout the walk. Example: Walk 5 minutes, run 5 minutes, walk 5 minutes, sprint 1 minute. This can help get the heart pumping and provide more moderate to high exercise for you and your dog.
- Best Accountability - Use your dog as your accountability partner in walking or running. Dogs are always up for some exercise and many need it. After getting into a routine your dog will most likely remind you that you should go out and get some exercise with them.
- Fetching Abs - In your home, backyard, or at a park, lay on the ground with a favorite toy or ball. As you do one "crunch" or "sit-up", toss the toy or ball for your dog. When they return it to you repeat the process. Note: Always be mindful of park rules and regulations. For your pet and other pets' safety it is typically recommended your pet remain on a leash in public areas.
- Lightening Abs - Grab a small flashlight. Lay down on the ground, facing a blank wall. As you come up for a "crunch" or "sit-up" shine the flashlight on the wall and let your pet chase it. Repeat.
- Flashlight Cardio - Grab a jump rope and a flashlight. Stand next to a blank wall. As you jump rope, have the light bounce on the wall for your pet to chase.
Pets can be helpful motivators along with emotional supporters through our journey to healthier lifestyles!
About Pets and People, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Exercising with Your Dog, Web MD
Article originally written by Kelsey Bair, UNL Dietetic Intern. Updated and reviewed in 2021.
Family Fun on the Run is a monthly newsletter designed to help families add physical activity to their already hectic schedules.