Running at the Mouth
By Margot Manning
4 Tips to get your Kids out of bed for a Run
Raising kids is like painting a picture. You need to be creative.
It takes time. When a mistake is made you need to retry but with a different technique… and there are so many moments along the way when you can admire their progress.
Now, I am NOT an artist like my daughter or an expert in raising kids. I just appreciate the process of the artist and similarly enjoy creating running experiences with the hope that kids eventually love running and will value it as a lifelong activity.
So, here’s four of my favourites tips to help them embrace the love of running.
Tip #1 Play to their highest desire (without blatant bribery)
Speed and stamina…. Soccer players and netballers and most kids playing sport want to be faster and have more stamina in their games. Running does that and after a few weeks, both you and your child will realise how much better they are performing on the field.
Food… Profiteroles, pancakes, hot chocolate and Slurpee surprises after the run are excellent ‘bonuses’ which can be as regularly or irregularly as you like. Spontaneous food treats are one of my thank-you’s to them for running with me and a great way to keep them talking.
Jacqui Lynagh, mum of two children said ” Finding ‘your’ purpose is always a good thing to talk about. My son has his – he wants to be able to run fast in the soccer game right until the end.”
Tip #2 Run in the rain
Running in the rain is incredibly fun. The harder the downpour the better because the puddles are larger, the tree leaf droplets denser and the challenge to stay ‘dry’ harder. Running in the rain has always been one of our favourite runs together and works nearly every time to get my kids out the door or the kids excited at the training groups. The downside happens when they use their puddle splashing skills in public races… oops!
Tip #3 Fun running
Immerse your children into fun runs. There is less pressure, they can ‘disappear’ into the crowd if they want and will get cheered by the older run folk… aka… the parents. Even more amazing is watching them become confident as they mix and communicate with other runners of all ages and all ability levels.
Tip #4 Don’t give up… because they grow up
Your children will turn thirTEEN and realise that post-run pancakes are not really as good as the comfort of their bed.
Don’t despair because they will see you running and enjoying your time out. Since they had already experienced some of this they will reconnect with the running community and you know that here they will always be cheered and supported.
intraining Coach Tracy Baker recently posted “It’s a miracle” at seeing her two kids begin their running journey. “You know your kids are proud of your running achievements when they stop saying you’re crazy because they’ve finally decided to buy their first pair of running shoes at 27 & 29.”
There are so many different ways to create running experiences for our kids. These are just a few of mine. I’d love to know what ones you have created or the conversations you have created. Email me here or share your comments on our Facebook page.
Keep reading to see what other parents and kids have to say…
This is what Julie Whitehead shared after celebrating a joint 50th parkrun with her daughter, Nicola… “My tip would be to go at their pace when they want you to be with them, leave them be when they want to go it alone and celebrate the very fact of being out there – that is the big achievement. “
intraining Coach and club president, Paul Broad’s daughter Isla said ” When I grow up, daddy, I want to run a marathon and you be on the sideline yelling “go intraining” (Aged 3)
And just for the record…. we all know that even when they are there to run, teens can sleep anywhere!! You have got to love them!!!
Margot and her husband Steve own intraining Running Centre and have been coaching kids for more than 30 years. They have created intraining to help people of all ages and abilities to run by developing coaching groups and programs, the intraining running shop, their podiatry & physiotherapy running injury clinic, the intraining Running & Triathlon Club, Twilight Run Fun Runs and an awesome team of coaches. They love running and want to share this with everyone.