Hoppin’ Down The Rail Trail

So last Easter, the baskets were filled to the brim with all manner of hyperactivity- and cavity-inducing treats: gum, tootsie rolls, chocolate, caramel, marshmallow – you name it, they ate it.  And so, friends, did I.  And I vowed NEVER AGAIN.

I think the bunny came through.  Now, they’re still kids, and that bunny is still that bunny, so there were certain junk food substances that made it through (Cadbury bunnies, M&M’s – the bunny had to leave M&M’s!, holiday pastel Goldfish).  But there was semi-good stuff too: cans of V8 Fusion, Annie’s organic bunny fruit snacks.  And then there were the downright awesome takeaway prizes – books, kites, tshirts with ironic sayings, toys.  All in all, everyone was quite pleased with the basket offerings this year.

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To top it off, the day before Easter we made a family go of the Hop to Help 5k at the Saucon Rail Trail.  Three of us made it the entire distance (Mama Bunny even managed to tack on extra mileage by retracing steps to encourage stragglers) and those that didn’t managed a beautiful stroll down the trail.  Everyone scampered in the sunshine after, playing on swings, slides, and monkey bars.  The point was: we moved.  Outside.  We took 053advantage of our health and the weather and made it a Family Fitness Day.

My favorite part of the day?  When my 7-year-old was struggling to finish his sprint to the finish (which he had gauged as being much closer than it was) and I started playing Ozzie’s “Crazy Train” while explaining to him what that song meant 036to me.  That was the song that got me through my last 1/4 mile of my marathon when I just wanted to walk; that spurred me to my own sprint to the finish line when really I just wanted to collapse and drink five gallons of icy water.  And the reason it got me through that 1/4 mile was because it brought him to mind.

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Last year, before each wrestling match, he listened to “Crazy Train” to psych himself up.  I watched that boy push through match after match, sometimes coming back from near-pins, other times fighting till the end even when he knew there was no way of winning.  I remember locking eyes with him when he was on his back and trying desperately to show him through my facial expression that he should NEVER GIVE UP.042

And he never did.

Nor did he give up at the 5k.  He pushed those little legs faster and ran right to the finish, where I forced him to pose for a victory photo.  Proud mama moment right there.

This post is a little late, and I nearly dismissed the idea of writing it altogether.  After all, the holiday is nearly a week old already.  But I am quite proud of the health-oriented holiday the M&M Clan celebrated, complete with mashed sweet potatoes and Paleo chocolate chip muffins that we brought to our extended family dinner.  Hey – I didn’t work that hard the previous week just to send it all down the tubes for one meal.  (Although I did inhale a king sized KitKat as soon as we completed our 5-hour roundtrip.  It was just lying there, taunting me.)

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I also wanted to celebrate leading by example.  Those monkeys know I am adamant about keeping healthy food in the cupboards and fridge.  They hear me preach the gospel of fitness on a daily basis.  So I set the example – right up until they went to bed and I ate that KitKat.

It belonged to the toddler.  He’ll never miss it.

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