Michigan dad hopes to inspire kids and family to live healthier

Guest Blogger

| 3 min read

Carlson Family
As a family we try to be better and do better when it comes to living a healthy lifestyle. Sometimes that takes a motivator in the family to lead the way. As a husband, dad, runner and Michigan resident, I try to do just that.
I began my active lifestyle with running about 12 years ago. I felt out of shape and unhealthy and wanted to make some changes. I was never a runner, so I knew it was going to be difficult. I figured running would be something I could do any time with a good pair of shoes, plus I wanted to challenge myself. Fast forward to today and I am 70 pounds lighter, run regularly, I have participated in a number of half marathons, I have more energy and I just feel great. It was not always easy, but it has definitely been worth it.
I currently run three times per week at about 2-2.5 miles each time. I continue to challenge myself by either increasing the length of my runs or decreasing my times by running faster. I feel lucky, I have never had an injury and I always listen to my body. I advocate that one should work hard during exercise, but also be careful to not overdo it. I will admit I do better with my running schedule during the spring, summer and fall compared to the cold winter months.
I keep up with my exercise and do my best to eat healthy. I am the proclaimed cook of the family. We meal plan, enjoy a variety of food, and try to keep everything balanced and in moderation There is always a variety of vegetables at meal times as the healthy go to option. As a family, we try to cook more and avoid dining out too often. We also avoid having too many extra carbohydrates in our diet. I will admit eating healthy is definitely the hardest thing, but the most impactful. I like to experiment with cooking different foods, while trying not to deprive myself and the family of the foods we enjoy. Cutting back or cutting out dessert is a key for me personally.
I hope that living a healthy lifestyle will impact my kids too. My twins, Austin and Amelia, are 2.5 years old. They are good kids, love to play, and eat a variety of food. My wife, Melissa, and I want to instill a sense of health and wellness in our kids as part of their everyday life. We teach them to be open to new things, have balance in their life, and remind them that taking care of yourself feels good.
I am very excited about running in the Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan Riverfront Run on June 11. It will be my wife’s first 5K event ever and I am happy to support her. My advice to her has been to do her best, don’t compete against anyone but herself and have fun. I strive for better health for myself and hope to continue to inspire my family to live healthier too.
If you are a dad that would like to run with me on June 11 at the BCBSM Riverfront Run, you can do so and use the discount code HEALTHYDAD to receive a buy one get one registration half-off. If other families also want to join in, they can use the HEALTHYME discount code for $5 off. Online registration closes at 6 p.m. on June 8, but you can still register at the event on Saturday beginning at 7:30 a.m. We hope to see you on Saturday.
Photo credit: Carlson Family, courtesy image

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