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One of the things I love about yoga is that it reminds us of when we were children and turned upside down, rolled around, balanced on our hands and twisted ourselves into strange shapes just for fun. When I teach yoga to kids, they take right to it because they intuitively understand the playful aspect of the poses.

This week starts a series of vlogs highlighting various yoga postures you can share with your children, and you’ll all benefit. To kick it off, let’s try Crow Pose. This arm balance is always a hit with the kids and offers many benefits:

  • develops the ability to focus
  • increases upper body strength
  • improves balance
  • cultivates coordination
  • builds confidence

Summer-camp season is upon us which means lots of kids putting their heads together in hot-weather activities. Time to step up measures to prevent the transmission of head lice. This spray has been working very well for us for the past few years, I’m happy to say. It’s easy to make and use, and the essential oils have many benefits for your child’s overall health.

Weight Watchers, Jenny Craig, HcG Pills, B12 Shots, South Beach Diet, Grapefruit Diet, Phentremine, Hydroxycut, Nutrisystem….

Been there, done that. 

The day I started 7th grade was the day I started my first diet. Prior to that day, my diet consisted of pizza, fried chicken, candy, soda, potatoes and lots of pasta. In my family, the way you showed someone you loved them was by cooking them a great meal. Every Sunday my entire family would meet at my grandma’s house to eat a huge meal and play cards… only we’d eat so much that we would fall asleep after the meal and forget to play cards.

I was always big for my age… I just never realized it until 7th grade.  My problem was not a lack of exercise; I’ve played organized sports all my life (my first word was baseball for crying out loud)!  My problem was that I had a family that showed love with food. My grandma would keep me after school until my mom picked me up. I’d eat a snack that was probably big enough to be a meal, then go home and eat a large dinner.

The day I realized that I was overweight was when one of the girls I cheered with said to me, “WOW I can’t believe you can touch your toes, you’re so fat.”  Thus began my journey through yo-yo diets and failed attempts at losing weight.

I literally tried every single diet out there. At one point, I was starving myself on the “lemonade” diet and only drinking a nasty concoction of hot water, lemon juice, cayenne pepper and honey. I’d lose 5 lbs after dieting for months, get discouraged and start eating again.

Finally, it clicked for me (Stick around for my next blog to see what my new “diet/lifestyle” is all about).  I got serious about losing weight and lost 12o pounds in a little less than 2 years. But there is still one major problem… Even though I’ve lost 120 pounds and I’m at a weight I would have died to be at 4 years ago, I just don’t notice the difference.

I’ve had body image issues since middle school. The teasing and constant nagging about dieting has taken its toll on my mind. My parents were great… don’t get me wrong. They loved me unconditionally and always encouraged me to be the best person I could be. We very rarely talked about weight (except when my mom and I dieted together). The ridicule came from other kids.

Here’s the take home point I’d like to make: If you’re a parent of an overweight child, don’t make a big deal about their weight. Don’t over analyze everything they eat. Don’t criticize them. Trust me, they get enough teasing from other kids, they do not need it from their parents. Take all the junk food and unhealthy items out of your home and start cooking healthy family meals. Don’t say you’re going on a diet, just say you’re trying new recipes (better yet, say nothing at all). Take family walks together or play a family game in the back yard.

Most importantly… THINK ABOUT HOW YOU TALK ABOUT YOUR WEIGHT AND LOOKS IN FRONT OF YOUR CHILDREN. If your child hears you saying you’re ugly, need a face lift, need to go on a diet, etc. they’ll soon be saying the same things. Be positive about all the great things that make you who you are. If you’ve got laugh lines that you want to get filled in, don’t complain about the laugh lines in front of your children… be thankful that you’ve had a lot to laugh about during your lifetime.

Please check out our health section for more information on body image, dieting and encouraging your children to exercise. In my next blog I’ll discuss how I lost 120 pounds!

Thanks for reading, 


Hello readers, as boring as it may be, I’m going to start out by introducing myself to you all…

I’m Brittany and I’m the newest addition to the Hudson Valley Parent family. About 4 months ago, I was hired as the Editorial Assistant. I must say, I really love working here at HVParent.  Our entire staff is great and so much fun to be around.

Since I came on board, I’ve worked a lot with our social media sites. If you’re not already our friend on facebook, I hope you’ll take a moment to join us (shameless plug… I know).

Now for some boring background about me… I’m originally from North Carolina. I moved to New York 6 months ago to be with my boyfriend, Bill.  Bill and I met through my baseball-focused, radio show I used to host called “A Show of Their Own.”  The show is now archived online, but I’ll spare you the shameless plug.

Prior to HVP, I worked as a high school basketball, softball and volleyball coach… which transitioned me to sports-talk radio and now logically to working for a parenting publication! Working for HV Parent is a combination of everything I love: writing, editing, interviewing, videos, photography, social media, even some graphic design! Not to mention, I get to think up crazy ideas for new things to offer our readers!

Now, I’ll admit, I’ve been putting off blogging for a while. I have several blogs of my own, but couldn’t decided on an angle for this new HVParent blog of mine. BUT I finally figured it out.

Since, I made you read this long blog all about me, I guess it’s time for me to unveil my new blog and what exactly it will be about (drum roll please….)

Gym Class Hero will focus on living a healthy lifestyle. I’ll discuss everything from sports, weight loss, activities for the kids, nutrition… anything. I recently lost 120 pounds… yep 120! I’m still 30 pounds away from my goal weight and cannot wait to share my journey with all of you.  I’m a sports nut and have had some great experiences I want to share with (y’all) you all. My goal for this blog is to have something for everyone… mom, dad, kids, grandparents, etc.  I hope you’ll continue reading my musings and comment away!

Thanks for reading,


About Me!

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