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7 Powerful Lessons I'm Teaching My Children Through Fitness

Are you ever struck by the profound impact your actions might have on your children's future selves? It's a question that's been on my mind a lot lately, particularly as I navigate the delicate balance of instilling values in my sons through fitness.

Now, before you think I'm leaving my daughter out, let me assure you, she's equally important, but perhaps that's a topic for another discussion.

A recent conversation I had sparked a revelation: Would I be proud if my sons grew up to be the man I am today? Conversely, would I be happy if my daughter married someone like me?

It's a thought-provoking question that reshapes how I approach life and parenting. With each action I take and every decision I make, I'm mindful of the lessons I'm imparting to my children.

In my journey as a fitness enthusiast, I've come to realize that there are striking parallels between physical strength and real-life resilience. This insight forms the basis of the 7 lessons I am teaching my sons through fitness:

1: Strength Equals Protection: At the core of masculinity lies strength, not just physical but mental and emotional too. I impress upon my sons the importance of being strong, not just for themselves but for their future families. After all, you can't protect your loved ones if you're not strong enough to do so.

Pro Tip: Have your sons join you for a couple of simple workouts each week. Bodyweight stuff like squats, pull-ups, push-ups, or sprints. This is a great way to build a strong base and bond.

2: Carrying Your Partner: A playful yet profound lesson, I believe every man should be able to carry his wife, both literally and figuratively. It's a gesture of love, security, and chivalry that sets the tone for a strong, supportive relationship.

Pro Tip: Periodically carry your wife over the threshold.

3: Physically Imposing Presence: There's a certain confidence that comes with physical strength. I teach my sons that being physically fit not only enhances their health but also exudes confidence and commands respect.

Pro Tip: Lifting weights is insanely beneficial for functional strength and longevity... but don't neglect some vanity lifts purely for intimidation and hypertrophy. Hit some curls for the girls!

4: Discipline Breeds Success: Fitness isn't just about lifting weights or running miles; it's about discipline. I emphasize the importance of consistency and dedication, even on days when motivation is lacking. It's this discipline that transcends fitness and permeates every aspect of life.

I have my kids do basic exercises 2 times per week. The rest of the time, I just want them outdoors playing, running, jumping, etc. On the 2 days when we do organized exercise, I explain the benefits of completing tasks regardless of motivation level.

5: Setting and Pursuing Goals: Fitness provides an excellent platform for goal-setting. I encourage my children to set ambitious yet achievable goals, teaching them the value of perseverance and the sweet taste of success.

Pro Tip: Involve your kids in your goals, so they can see you striving for something.

6: Embracing Failure and Taking Responsibility: Failure is inevitable, but how we respond to it shapes our character. I teach my sons to embrace failure as a learning opportunity and to take full responsibility for their actions, whether on the soccer field or in life.

My kids have seen me fail when I have chased a big goal. But they have also seen me pick myself back up and go for it again.

7: Discipline Turns to Devotion: Lastly, I instill in my children the concept that discipline, when practiced consistently, evolves into devotion. The journey from viewing fitness as a chore to embracing it as a lifestyle reflects a broader lesson in commitment and dedication.

Discipline will carry success into all aspects of life whether fitness, finances, marriage, etc. Teach them to win.

Through these 7 lessons, I aim to equip my sons with not just physical prowess but also the resilience, discipline, and integrity needed to navigate life's challenges. And as they grow, I hope they'll carry these lessons with them, passing them on to future generations.

Make Families Fit Again,

Ben AKA The Neighborhood Alpha Dad

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