The Summer Games are coming fast. I see this as a great opportunity for parents to speak with their kids about living a healthy lifestyle. I can assure you that athletes in London, like myself, have had to make hard decisions. For the most part, I and other top athletes I compete against have been lucky enough to make good decisions about underage drinking and living healthy.
I have a daughter, Trinity, and she is in Ask, Listen, Learn's target age group. I always tell her that I have always had to make sure to live healthy and make positive decisions so that I could continue to accomplish the goals I set for myself. I constantly point out to her that I have to take great care of my body in order to do my best, and that is true no matter what it is she wants to do when she grows up.
As parents, we have to remember that everything we do and everything we say is being watched by our kids and other young people who look up to us. It's important for me to remember the healthy decisions I had to make in order for me to reach my dreams and accomplish my goals so that I may use those stories as evidence of a formula toward a happy life for Trinity.
I have been fortunate enough to be able to use my track success as a teaching tool, and I encourage you to do the same. So as you sit down with your kids this summer to watch the Games or any other sporting event, use these tips on to start the conversation with them about saying “NO” to underage drinking:
- Point out that athletes reached this level of competition by making smart decisions that are helpful and not harmful for their body.
- Tell your kids how important it is to overcome setbacks and bad days and bounce back from a tough race or a step backward in school. I attribute my ability to bounce back from my injuries as perhaps my biggest strength. This applies to all areas of life.
- Encourage and help your kids explore their favorite things. I found my passion on the track, but some kids prefer the classroom or helping out in their community. Whatever they enjoy, help them set goals to become better at that each day and show them what steps they should (and shouldn't) take along the way in order to be their best.
- Use the positive atmosphere surrounding the next few weeks of action in London to sit down with your kids, discuss their goals, and take the healthy lifestyle pledge at www.asklistenlearn.com/pledge today.
Please take advantage of the this great chance to chat with your kids about the importance of saying “YES” to a healthy lifestyle and “NO” to underage drinking.
Wish me luck!< Back