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Show ALL Forums  > Health Wellness  > helping a teenaged girl get fit      Home login  
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 Gus_K
Joined: 6/26/2008
Msg: 26
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helping a teenaged girl get fitPage 2 of 3    (1, 2, 3)

We skip most of the middle of the grocery store, try to focus on the produce section, whole grain breads, chicken, fish...and portion control has been the hardest!

The term healthy eating is open to some debate. I avoid grains at all costs... grains are best left for fattening up cattle, something they do quite well. It is also important to not cut fat intake in favor of carbohydrates. Even lard provides essential fatty acids that our bodies and brains need. The same cannot be said of things found in the produce isle. Eating fat does not cause insulin production which is the only mechanism that our bodies use to produce/store fat. Whole grains will and do promote body fat. There is nothing inherently healthy about salads, again where are the essential fatty acids and proteins that our bodies need.

On the subject of exercise one has to be careful as it will tend to make you hungry. Many folks embark on a rigorous exercise regime and do lose weight, but it will have to be a life long commitment... something that seldom happens.

For those interested Gary Taubes' 2007 book Good Calories, Bad Calories (The Diet Delusion in the UK) can be a real eye opener.
 xxmaybethistime
Joined: 4/23/2009
Msg: 27
helping a teenaged girl get fit
Posted: 4/28/2009 7:59:05 PM
unfortunately its true. it does come from boys =( those shallow things!! lol

but sometimes you just get sick of the extra weight and wanna lose it for yourself. that is the best motivation i think...
 festering zit
Joined: 4/11/2009
Msg: 28
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helping a teenaged girl get fit
Posted: 4/28/2009 9:06:34 PM
Building muscle will change her appearance faster than anything because it revs up metabolism and and muscle burns fat. The best exercise for this is the squat and other high intensity compound exercises. She will not get all bulky. That is a myth. "Toning" exercises are a waster of time at her stage.
 FriendlyFreeSpirit
Joined: 8/24/2008
Msg: 29
helping a teenaged girl get fit
Posted: 4/29/2009 1:03:26 PM
She's also too young to work out with weights - heavy weights, anyway. She could easily tear the muscle from the bone - I think the term is "too green"..
Better she builds up muscle tone through resistance training using her own body...
 sweetest
Joined: 10/8/2007
Msg: 30
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helping a teenaged girl get fit
Posted: 4/29/2009 5:43:31 PM
The wii fit idea is a terrific one! Everyone in the family can benefit and it's age appropriate.
 Mojig
Joined: 10/22/2008
Msg: 31
helping a teenaged girl get fit
Posted: 4/29/2009 6:25:57 PM

It is also important to not cut fat intake in favor of carbohydrates.

I just wanted to stress this point again. Fats get a bad reputation. But you have to eat some fats and most people get too many carbs and not enough fat and protein.

As far as motivation find a way to measure progress that doesn't involve a scale/measuring tape. For example if she gets into running/biking/swimming get her to write down how far she goes and how long it takes her. Congratulate her when she improves on her time/distance.

Being able to measure what you are doing can give you something to strive for. Exercise is more fun when you have a goal to beat instead of when you are just going through the motions.
 Mojig
Joined: 10/22/2008
Msg: 32
helping a teenaged girl get fit
Posted: 4/29/2009 6:30:33 PM

She's also too young to work out with weights - heavy weights, anyway. She could easily tear the muscle from the bone - I think the term is "too green"..
Better she builds up muscle tone through resistance training using her own body...

And this is completely untrue. She would be just fine with weights and some proper instruction. She's just a girl trying to get in shape and weights are just fine for that. It's not like she's about to go in for a max deadlift anytime soon if ever.

All that stuff about kids not being able to handle weights and it stunting their growth are old myths. Running will put more stress on your body and joints than most weight training and you never see anyone telling kids to not run.
 jazmella
Joined: 2/23/2006
Msg: 33
helping a teenaged girl get fit
Posted: 4/29/2009 8:16:24 PM
The above posters have posted some excellent ideas to get her moving. I just wanted to add one thing though, since I've "been there, done that" at her age - she has to want to change. If the want isn't there, it isn't going to happen. Not only want to change physically, but mentally as well. Your mindset has to change or else you won't keep up the healthy life style once the weight has come off.

About a month or two before I turned 14, I decided it was time to get myself in shape. But what was my major motivation? lol...BOYS! Yes, that was enough to motivate me to get my butt in gear and lose weight. So, for three months straight before I started high school, I got my act together through exercising and healthy eating. Ended up losing 30 pounds that summer. But let me forewarn you - at such a young age, it's quite easy to be turned OFF of exercising and that may affect how you feel about it later on in your life. So, again, she has to WANT it. Never force her into it. It will have a negative impact on her later on in life.

Support her, make sure she knows she's beautiful no matter WHAT, and lead by example. One big thing that helped me at that tender young age is my mother (especially my mother) joining in with me doing my exercises and making sure I knew I was beautiful (inside and out) regardless of what weight I was.

Hope that helps a bit. :-)
 FriendlyFreeSpirit
Joined: 8/24/2008
Msg: 34
helping a teenaged girl get fit
Posted: 4/30/2009 1:07:22 AM
And this is completely untrue. She would be just fine with weights and some proper instruction. She's just a girl trying to get in shape and weights are just fine for that. It's not like she's about to go in for a max deadlift anytime soon if ever.

Everyone is entitled to their opinion. I've been working out with a champion female bodybuilder for more than 12 months now and she has a few teenage girls as clients. She told me heavy weights are dangerous for teens...I agree, light weights are fine, with proper training. But cardio and resistance training (chin ups, push-ups etc) are best for a 14-year-old, imo.
As for going for max deadlift in the future- why not? She might enjoy weights and continue on with them. I go for max deadlift every time.
 maybeangel
Joined: 3/18/2008
Msg: 35
helping a teenaged girl get fit
Posted: 4/30/2009 5:51:00 AM
This has been great! You guys have some really good ideas...thank you

So we are upping the activities a little- I am trying not to try for too much at once. I have a friend who helped to organize a basic routine. She is not using weights right now, but we are thinking of getting some small hand weights in a couple of weeks.


Being able to measure what you are doing can give you something to strive for


any suggestions on this?
we are avoiding weight, I don't know about measurements...I would think you don't want to do that too often. When do you start looking for improvement?
and how do we "measure" it?

oh-- and I forgot who said it -- but about it needing to be HER wanting this-- you are soooo right! I am walking a tightrope of being encouraging- but not demanding, It does need to come from her!
 sweetest
Joined: 10/8/2007
Msg: 36
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helping a teenaged girl get fit
Posted: 4/30/2009 6:36:36 AM
Re avoiding measuring weight...while I completely understand why you are hesitant to do this, personally if we were all doing this as a family, I would still use the scale.

However there are other indicators that you can use to track improvement.

--look for increased stamina in your activity. You mentioned walking...??
For example, if you are briskly walking together and try to carry on a conversation at the beginning of starting a walking program one or both may struggle to do so. Over time, the ability to carry on the conversation becomes much easier..as does your breathing while still keeping your stride.
--look for your clothes to fit more loosely. Often when you start working with weights and developing muscle, you will gain a few pounds (hence the reason some hate the scale) and still lose inches.

One more thing...have you sat down with your daughter to look at courses for next year? I know from my own son's experience that while he's nuts for gym class he couldn't squeeze it in most years because of pressing course requirements year-to-year. Often gym then becomes an option that can't be accommodated. With girls your daughter's age--not having to take a gym class is a often a seen as a welcome relief from the requirement at the elementary level! If you are able to, and if she is willing, have a look at next year's schedule to see if it can be accommodated. A twice a week gym class is going to improve her situation greatly over a 10 month period.
 Mojig
Joined: 10/22/2008
Msg: 37
helping a teenaged girl get fit
Posted: 4/30/2009 9:17:25 AM
Yeah light weights is fine. Sorry for the confusion but when people say weights are bad for kids they usually mean all weight lifting.

As for going for max deadlift in the future- why not? She might enjoy weights and continue on with them. I go for max deadlift every time.

I never said she shouldn't. Just said she probably wouldn't because face it, most women (and really most guys too) never push themselves that hard. I wish more people would lift heavier, but it's an uphill battle with most people trying to convince them it's okay to lift heavy.
 SiriusOread
Joined: 11/8/2007
Msg: 38
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helping a teenaged girl get fit
Posted: 6/6/2009 6:50:49 AM
How about telling her about SparkPeople? It is totally free and there are online communities for nearly every age group. You can track fitness and nutrition, read motivating emails, blog about your health and fitness journey, and make online friends who are doing the same. She really might like it. Here is their standard message:

SparkPeople is the world's largest healthy living community with a free online diet and fitness program. SparkPeople is helping millions of people achieve their goals every single day!

Whether you want to lose weight, tone up, live a healthier lifestyle or reach other goals, SparkPeople can help--and it's 100% FREE!

SparkPeople is free because REAL people like you, are getting REAL results and spreading the word to their friends and families!

By Joining SparkPeople You Get:

- Calorie Counter & Meal Plans: Take the guesswork out of what to eat with these powerful customizable tools.
- Personalized Fitness Plan & Exercise Demos: Burn calories and tone your muscles with routines you can do at home or at the gym, plus online exercise videos.
- Active Support Message Boards: Get help from thousands of other people like you who are losing weight with SparkPeople.
- Advice From Our Experts: Our programs are designed by registered dieticians and personal trainers, who are also there to answer your questions.
- Member Created Goal Teams: Find others with similar goals and work towards success together.
- Recipes, Articles, Tips and More: Thousands of articles and over 60,000 recipes to learn more about eating right, staying active, and sticking to your program.

Join SparkPeople Now For Free!
www.sparkpeople.com
 Mystie_Dragonfly
Joined: 4/8/2009
Msg: 39
helping a teenaged girl get fit
Posted: 6/6/2009 7:17:47 AM
The YMCA give lower prices on memberships to lower income families or family passes. I am sure getting to go swimming often would be nice.

However, please remember, she is fifteen. Anything that puts her on the spot is going to embarrass her. I would have been devastated if I had to ride a stationary bike while the other family sat to enjoy tv. Also, if she is fifteen and only a little over weight, I honestly believe a stationary bike in the living room isn't really needed.

What are her hobbies? Maybe she could join the marching band? I honestly believe that kept me in shape through out high school. I didn't gain weight till my senior year. Maybe if band is not her thing, show choir. Maybe she'd be into a sport? Softball maybe. If she dances, maybe she can get into a competition or summer dance school. Even a summer job walking dogs or mowing lawns (with a push mower)!! Does she have a knack for gardening? Is this something you could teach her? Give her a little spot on the yard to garden. only rule is, she cannot use machines to turn the dirt over and weed. All has to be done with a shovel and by hand.


We are working hard on nutrition and healthy eating. We try to walk in the evenings, and she does take a dance class.


This is a really good start... for the whole family. It really isn't fair to single her out. It's a good time to teach everyone about healthy eating and, well, playing outside.

I really liked what the others said about getting outside to do things. However again, this should be something the whole family does. Not just your sort of overweight teenager.

Good luck!
 Mystie_Dragonfly
Joined: 4/8/2009
Msg: 40
helping a teenaged girl get fit
Posted: 6/6/2009 7:32:45 AM


Being able to measure what you are doing can give you something to strive for


any suggestions on this?
we are avoiding weight, I don't know about measurements...I would think you don't want to do that too often. When do you start looking for improvement?
and how do we "measure" it?


There is, of course, craft measuring tape. Or if you don't want her to feel too self conscious... just a ribbon or string. Put a knot in it when ever she loses some.

Again, I am worried this would be humiliating for a teenager though.

However, taking her shopping for a new pair of jeans or a cute new outfit would be a nice gift after she hits goals. Maybe for each pound she loses, get her a pearl or a little charm (would be cheaper) for a charm necklace. That way she can see her accomplishments in front of her.


I am walking a tightrope of being encouraging- but not demanding,


I am sure she already feels put on the spot as it is. Especially if you are saying things in front of the family or in public. I understand you want to be supportive, but there comes a time when a teenager wants to just eat some pizza and drink some pop with her friends.
 zarathustra00
Joined: 4/28/2009
Msg: 41
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helping a teenaged girl get fit
Posted: 6/6/2009 1:25:21 PM

Everyone is entitled to their opinion. I've been working out with a champion female bodybuilder for more than 12 months now and she has a few teenage girls as clients. She told me heavy weights are dangerous for teens...I agree, light weights are fine, with proper training. But cardio and resistance training (chin ups, push-ups etc) are best for a 14-year-old, imo.
As for going for max deadlift in the future- why not? She might enjoy weights and continue on with them. I go for max deadlift every time.


As the other poster said, he's not recommending that a teen go for their maximum deadlift PR. Which is in fact more difficult, bent over rowing with a 45 or 25lb bar or a beginner trying to do a pullup.? Bench pressing a bar or doing a pushup... especially for someone overweight? Growth plates are what regulate the shape and length of bones. Now which do you think is more likely to damage growth plates, a bodycheck during hockey, collisions during football or in soccer? Or supervised weight training? Yet most parents don't have any concern about some contact sports stunting the growth of children. And most kids generally don't have the CNS to produce enough force.
 zarathustra00
Joined: 4/28/2009
Msg: 42
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helping a teenaged girl get fit
Posted: 6/6/2009 1:36:44 PM

I never said she shouldn't. Just said she probably wouldn't because face it, most women (and really most guys too) never push themselves that hard. I wish more people would lift heavier, but it's an uphill battle with most people trying to convince them it's okay to lift heavy.


This.
I've made great progress with female clients on variations of Bill Starr's 5x5. But it always takes some convincing that they won't suddently turn into Ms. Olympia because if it.
 Kiiara
Joined: 3/23/2008
Msg: 43
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helping a teenaged girl get fit
Posted: 6/6/2009 2:08:29 PM
You have to be kind of careful with teenage girls and loosing weight, I would know (still being a teenager myself.) If you push them to hard you are at risk of lowering their likely already delicate self esteem which, in worst case scenarios, could lead to all sorts of awful complications like depresion and eating dissorders. My best advice would be to encourage her by getting into the world, joining a supportive sport / physical activity group and eating a HEALTHY diet. This does not mean cutting out everything high carb, calories, etc. Variety is KEY!

Also, make sure that she isn't actually within her healthy weight range. Ask a doctor to evaluate her growth curve to make sure she isn't just naturaly bigger but still healthy.

Best of luck.
 ImAHotMess
Joined: 7/11/2008
Msg: 44
helping a teenaged girl get fit
Posted: 6/7/2009 10:22:18 AM
Hey there! I agree on the budget deal, and I wont recommend the type of gym I go too, but I know people who have kids (a family) and they use the local Recreation Center, and one woman I spoke to said the whole family joined it for 125 a year (and NO start up cost) these places are normally in your own city and support the local residents and are great for families!!!! That is less than what you probably spend on junk food in a month if you really add up what is being spent. I think you are doing the best you can, and just do all possible to maybe get her out more. I happen to live on a super high protein/LOW carb diet and it keeps me lean. I live on it, so it is more a life style for me. I suggest cooking at home, and there are tons of ways to make food good without feeling deprived. E mail me if you want some ideas. I am more than willing to help!! You will get tons of opinions and ideas and all you can do is what works best for you. I am very PRO free weights, cardio, low carb, high fat high protein. I am never hungry, I stay in shape, it has lowered my budget and I overall feel better. My Cholesterol went WAYYYYYY down, and I never have to count this or worry about that. I eat similar to the Atkins approach, minus all the bacon and CRAP. I eat tons of turkey, fish, steak, pork, and veggies. It works. And again, it is so easy.
 zarathustra00
Joined: 4/28/2009
Msg: 45
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helping a teenaged girl get fit
Posted: 6/7/2009 5:50:57 PM

Hey there! I agree on the budget deal, and I wont recommend the type of gym I go too, but I know people who have kids (a family) and they use the local Recreation Center, and one woman I spoke to said the whole family joined it for 125 a year (and NO start up cost) these places are normally in your own city and support the local residents and are great for families!!!! That is less than what you probably spend on junk food in a month if you really add up what is being spent. I think you are doing the best you can, and just do all possible to maybe get her out more. I happen to live on a super high protein/LOW carb diet and it keeps me lean. I live on it, so it is more a life style for me. I suggest cooking at home, and there are tons of ways to make food good without feeling deprived. E mail me if you want some ideas. I am more than willing to help!! You will get tons of opinions and ideas and all you can do is what works best for you. I am very PRO free weights, cardio, low carb, high fat high protein. I am never hungry, I stay in shape, it has lowered my budget and I overall feel better. My Cholesterol went WAYYYYYY down, and I never have to count this or worry about that. I eat similar to the Atkins approach, minus all the bacon and CRAP. I eat tons of turkey, fish, steak, pork, and veggies. It works. And again, it is so easy.



Gramwise, what do you consider low carb?
 Motto_Bella
Joined: 8/15/2008
Msg: 46
helping a teenaged girl get fit
Posted: 6/7/2009 7:10:26 PM
OP,

My teen-age nephew is staying w/me this summer... he's over weight. He doesn't need reminding about something he already knows. Instead, I stay very conscious of his eating habits and gear my actions appropriately. For starters, I solicit his assistance w/meal planning, preparation and shopping. Add to it, holding him accountable in the gym 4-5 times a week (he does the same for me). Also, *education* and *example* are huge ~ teach healthy alternatives, portion control and living a culture of "good nutrition". Like most things in life ~ approach "rewards" in moderation. More times than not (w/my nephew), it's a lack of information and assertive awareness on their part as to why they do/not do -or- eat/not eat certain things. I highly encourage open discussions (during dinner) so you're able to assess *his/her* understanding, attitude and knowledge about weight. If I had a dime for every moment my nephew said "I didn't know that" - his gym membership would be paid for the remainder of his summer visit. You're on the right track ~ stay focused and kudos to you for genuinely caring and loving your child!
 daisyflower81
Joined: 4/12/2009
Msg: 47
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helping a teenaged girl get fit
Posted: 6/7/2009 11:16:50 PM
I think you have to be careful with her. I don't think that losing weight will always going to increase her confidence. With teenagers I think you need to focus on healthy eating and and increasing exercise. I've got no co-ordination and I find riding a bike to be good. I don't know how many calories it burns but it's fun. I think you need to make her exercise fun. The biggest thing is to let her know that she is loved and her worth is not in anyway defined by how much she weighs.
You could try out new more healthy recipes together that could be fun.
I hope she does not use a man for motivation to lose weight personally. She needs to find self worth in herself.
I just want to say be care five million times because I would hate to see her fall into an eating disorder.
 davdo
Joined: 8/4/2008
Msg: 48
helping a teenaged girl get fit
Posted: 6/8/2009 3:06:04 AM
Look for a video game called Dance, Dance, Revolution. It is a fun cardio work out. When I worked at the mall I saw a lot of kids drop weight just playing that game in the arcade. I think there is a version of it for the wii. Also if you can cut out the diet cokes or regular cokes and try to get her to switch to water.
 Edsta
Joined: 7/19/2008
Msg: 49
helping a teenaged girl get fit
Posted: 6/8/2009 5:13:25 AM
OP:

See if you can find a Krav Maga or Thai kickboxing class in your town. Either will provide these benefits for your daughter:

1. Burn huge amounts of calories in a short time---both use high intensity interval training principles, she'll see quick and dramatic improvement in both muscular strength and cardio endurance.

2. Vastly improve her reflexes and coordination: eye-hand-foot.

3. Provide full-body strengthening and toning. Both classes will include some amount of calisthenics, core/ab work.

4. Provide REALISTIC self-defense skills (the Krav Maga is probably unparalleled in this department) which is especially useful for young women given the risk of date rape. A lot more useful than the typical karate or tae-kwon-do McDojo. (Though even a McDojo is better than nothing.)

5. Generally improve self-confidence as she progresses and learns to do things she's probably never imagined herself capable of doing, like break an attacker's nose/knees/leg/jaw/ribs if needed.

6. Most people who try it, find this stuff to be FUN! She'll probably make lots of new friends too.


PS. The Wii Fit is a joke, about as useless as a Bowflex machine. There are much better ways to spend your money than that.
 maybeangel
Joined: 3/18/2008
Msg: 50
helping a teenaged girl get fit
Posted: 6/8/2009 7:49:48 AM
Hey there--
Just wanted to throw in a few things
and thank everyone for some good ideas.

We are doing very well-- the eating right is a little hit and miss-- but we are working on it!

A friend of ours helped out with a bit of a program that she can do- at home, or out places ---no weights at the moments- but a tension band thingy.


Especially if you are saying things in front of the family or in public


I am not humiliating her-- I would not discuss this with everyone-
I figured that on here- I can get some ideas, and not have her feel on the spot-
she does know about this- btw- I don't let her read it- but she knows it is here.
We are working on some changes as a family- and she is working on some of her own as well.

I know that losing weight doesn't automatically boost your confidence....but being healthy is a good start for that.

and the wii fit-- wasn't a waste of money for us-- we didn't buy it as a weight loss fitness program-- we bought it because it is FUN!!!!
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