Advice: 12 year old is overweight :(

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Replies

  • myheartsabattleground
    myheartsabattleground Posts: 2,040 Member
    YOU have to be interested.
    YOU are HER mother.
    What YOU do, directly impacts HER future.

    Instead of complaining that SHE doesn't wanna do anything, maybe look at YOURSELF and decide to change YOURSELF. She will then follow suit.
  • nutmegoreo
    nutmegoreo Posts: 15,534 Member
    What about something like kickboxing? It will give her confidence that she can take care of herself, and it's a great workout.
  • cafeaulait7
    cafeaulait7 Posts: 2,459 Member
    She could try some of this at home, too, with DVDs or youtube. There are so many choices and it's in the privacy of home, in case she doesn't feel like being social with it. Y'all could choose one together if she likes that :) I recommend belly dance or Caribbean dance for a couple of ideas people don't always think of. So fun!
  • lisalsd1
    lisalsd1 Posts: 1,521 Member
    I was an overweight kid, and I can tell you that my mother TELLING me to use the treadmill would have backfired. I would have viewed that as a punishment and resented both my mother and exercise. Honestly, your daughter KNOWS she is overweight. Having your mother reinforce that by telling you to exercise isn't going to help at 12 years old.

    What I really WISH I had at the time was a role model for healthy eating and a healthy active lifestyle (not in a pushy or preachy way). I had a tennis coach (my mom signed me up for private lessons ), who was more of an inspiration for me. I didn't want to play a team sport; we'll, b/c I was a fat kid and sucked at sports. You might see what sport she is interested in that can be done in a non-competitive way.
  • DrifterBear
    DrifterBear Posts: 265 Member
    Don't put her on a 'diet' and don't put her on a treadmill. It all starts and ends with YOU! You have 30 lbs to lose too, so you both need to eat better and be more active. If you are a good role model and serve healthy portion controlled meals and go for walks, etc., she'll follow. Get a couple bikes, look up local hiking places near you. Maybe get a camera and get her out in the woods or wherever you live. Take pictures of wildlife and go home and try to figure out and document what you found. Whatever it is, if you start spending time with her doing healthy activities, she'll be more likely to pick up that lifestyle.
  • Bonny132
    Bonny132 Posts: 3,617 Member
    I can only tell you what worked for me (till I discovered alcohol, fast foods and stopped exercising)

    I got involved with a local fitness team, for me, I really enjoyed athletics, my group was great and catered for all abilities and made exercise fun and competitive but in a good way (they had awards for greatest improvements etc) These days I do have wii competitions with my nieces etc, it encourages play through video play and Movements! And it is fun!! You can play with friends and with family.

    You need to find exercise she enjoys doing, and focus on that, take her out, get her involved, and support her fiercely, and ensure your ex does the same, thi is his daughter after all, and you both want her to be healthy and happy. Are you able to talk to him on a decent friendly basis? Can you both visit the doctor for example to talk to him/her about her weight issues and come up with a common plan that you both will see through?
  • kshama2001
    kshama2001 Posts: 25,701 Member
    I didn't like team sports, but I did like tennis lessons, and riding my bike to and from those lessons, and I liked rollerblading at the rink despite the fact that disco was the music du jour.
  • middlehaitch
    middlehaitch Posts: 8,384 Member
    I hated any kind of exercise at her age, and my son was about to follow the trend. At age 12-13 he decided to take taikwando. He liked it because it was a personal achievement sport, not competitive.
    He stuck at it for over 5 years. During that time riding his bike back and forth he got interested in cycling, being a bit heavier than his peers, he found long distance running his best sport at school, and I encouraged him take swimming lessons from the age of 5.
    All this segued into him becoming one of the top under 25 provincial triathletes, and an ironman competitor.
    Now, he road races on his bike, and has just got him and his son into taikwando again.
    Look for something that is self challenging rather than competitive.
    Martial arts and triathlon are the 2 that I can recommend.
    Singular but social.

    Cheers, h.
  • victoria_1024
    victoria_1024 Posts: 915 Member
    Ugh 12 is the worst age to be a girl! You already feel so bad about yourself. I would be reeeally cautious with those conversations. You don't want her to go too far the other direction. Puberty is a time where lots of girls gain weight and then thin out later so she might naturally lose the weight as she grows.
  • BioQueen
    BioQueen Posts: 694 Member
    My parents made me do a sport - I could really choose whatever I wanted, but I HAD to do something. If she doesn't like team sports there are tons of fun more solitary sports (that's what I chose to do, I'm not good at the sportsball). I didn't really start gaining weight until AFTER I stopped doing my sports and went to college. I was always at the upper end of my healthy BMI until about 17/18 years old.

    I remember my dad telling me once that I "should start going to the gym". He wasn't being mean or pushy, but I will never forget him saying it and how awful it made me feel in high school. I would also encourage healthy snacking and not keeping too much junk in the house.
  • ElizabethOakes2
    ElizabethOakes2 Posts: 1,038 Member
    Most community centers have classes like aerobics, Zumba, hip-hop, etc, that you can do together as a mom and daughter activity. Check the community center and local community college schedules and see if you can find something fun that you both want to try.

  • 3AAnn3
    3AAnn3 Posts: 3,055 Member
    Your kids do what you do. If your diet is bad then their diet will be bad. If you sit on the couch and watch TV they will sit on the couch and play on their iPhones. Get out and get active. Take your kids with you, and yes encourage her to join a sport. I'm guessing that she's already set in her ways since she's 13, but start now. Most importantly, don't judge her, you've set the example that she's simply following. Change the example.

    As for what exercises that are good, pretty much anything. Weightlifting, gymnastics, running, and walking are all good. Let her find her passion and again, be supportive.

    I beg to differ. Kids all have their own interests. One of my boys loves to do active stuff, like me. The other loves to take apart electrical components and put them back together. He's never seen anyone do that. My daughter is 2, so not really sure who she is yet. My point is, you have an influence, but you're not the only one...
  • cwolfman13
    cwolfman13 Posts: 41,012 Member
    One of the reasons we are so active as a family is to set a good example for my boys. We get out and do all kinds of stuff...sometimes it's a hike in the mountains or a family bike ride...sometimes we just go bowling or I take them to the trampoline park...sometimes it's just a few hours at the zoo or a museum walking around.

    We make it a point to not be just sitting around most of the time.
  • 3AAnn3
    3AAnn3 Posts: 3,055 Member
    lisalsd1 wrote: »
    I was an overweight kid, and I can tell you that my mother TELLING me to use the treadmill would have backfired. I would have viewed that as a punishment and resented both my mother and exercise. Honestly, your daughter KNOWS she is overweight. Having your mother reinforce that by telling you to exercise isn't going to help at 12 years old.

    What I really WISH I had at the time was a role model for healthy eating and a healthy active lifestyle (not in a pushy or preachy way). I had a tennis coach (my mom signed me up for private lessons ), who was more of an inspiration for me. I didn't want to play a team sport; we'll, b/c I was a fat kid and sucked at sports. You might see what sport she is interested in that can be done in a non-competitive way.

    Also completely agree with this. Don't push her. Let her see you happy being active and cooking healthy meals. Keep nutritionally dense food in the home and let her see you reaching for those things.
  • klund13
    klund13 Posts: 98 Member
    My girls (11 and 9) like to workout with me at home! We usually do HIIT videos from Youtube, or if I am strength training I let them use cans of soup. It is fun if you do it together!
  • LKArgh
    LKArgh Posts: 5,173 Member
    Julieash wrote: »
    I've tried tons of times to get her interested in sports but she doesn't want to. At school she'll love it but not outside of school. And in the summer she's more active, always on her bike and outside but in the winter its harder. And now at 12 years old when she gets together with her friends it's to sit around and play on their tablets... and the other part of the problem is that I have shared custody and at her father's they eat a lot more junk and restaurants all the time, I've fought with him about this this but I have no control over what she eats 2 weeks a month :( that's why I had a long talk with her.

    This is why whether she exercises or not should not be up for discussion, only the type of exercise. I never gave my kids the option to not exercise. When my oldest was 9, we had a "I do not want to be in the swim team this year, but I do not like anything else either, my friends do not exercise" phase. I replied that it is not up for debate, physical activity is a matter of health, so she better choose something, or I will make the choice for her, and the choice will be based on what I find more convenient, not on her interests, so it might be her joining me for a run every evening. She chose martial arts, whined non-stop for the first weeks, now 2 years later, she loves it.
    However, I do not expect the kids to follow different rules than me, I exercise regularly too. Usually more than my kids do.
  • Zampa13
    Zampa13 Posts: 75 Member
    I think walking is hugely underated.
    If school is close enough, walk her there and back everyday. I have a pet hate for mothers who jump in the car to bring their kids 10mins down the road.
    My mother walked me to school 35 mins away everyday.

    Try going for a walk with her after dinner every evening, it will give you both time to talk and bond and have some girly banter.

    Like others have said though diet is key. Try cooking new recipes with her bring her shopping for fresh food etc.

    Little changes can have such positive results!
  • blankiefinder
    blankiefinder Posts: 3,599 Member
    edited January 2016
    I would suggest two things... one, get active with her (if she's willing to do stuff with you). Go take squash / handball / badminton / tennis / etc lessons together or her alone. Try to find something she enjoys and then maybe get her into a group where she will make friends and want to go on her own. Don't make it about weight loss, but make it about fun, and maybe health. Maybe she could try swim lessons, summer swim club, etc. Train together for a cancer fun run?

    Two, I'd suggest sitting down with a counsellor with the ex, without the daughter, to work through the issues around her weight and try to get on the same page. Compromises. Maybe she won't eat there exactly as she would at home, but maybe he can find his own way to serve healthier meals etc.
  • marsh5224
    marsh5224 Posts: 34 Member
    Been there. We did Zumba 2xs times a week. She loved it and made sure we never missed a class! We took up camping. You can sit around for 2 days or you get up and enjoy nature...we hiked and biked everywhere. Our state campgrounds do not have wifi..what a blessing!

    Never could get her interested in sports earlier but she found the swim team at school her freshman year (14) and it changed everything. Her coach was educational and kind. She has grown in confidence and this year the captain of her team. Looking back it makes since as we never could keep her out of the water. Her swim team friends could always get her to eat healthier than I could.

    You can help her! What is she naturally drawn to? Get private lessons to gain confidence first. Do it with her. It brought us a lot closer and life long accountability buddies. She wants to be healthy and she is counting on you for tools. Just like she does for school and personal hygiene. Building confidence and a buddy are key. Nobody wants to conquer a mountain alone.
  • juniorette
    juniorette Posts: 274 Member
    3AAnn3 wrote: »
    lisalsd1 wrote: »
    I was an overweight kid, and I can tell you that my mother TELLING me to use the treadmill would have backfired. I would have viewed that as a punishment and resented both my mother and exercise. Honestly, your daughter KNOWS she is overweight. Having your mother reinforce that by telling you to exercise isn't going to help at 12 years old.

    What I really WISH I had at the time was a role model for healthy eating and a healthy active lifestyle (not in a pushy or preachy way). I had a tennis coach (my mom signed me up for private lessons ), who was more of an inspiration for me. I didn't want to play a team sport; we'll, b/c I was a fat kid and sucked at sports. You might see what sport she is interested in that can be done in a non-competitive way.

    Also completely agree with this. Don't push her. Let her see you happy being active and cooking healthy meals. Keep nutritionally dense food in the home and let her see you reaching for those things.


    I agree with this also. I'm a mom of 14 twin teenage girls who are overweight and were never into sports. They take after their dad; filipino but picture a solid looking pacific island guy, slightly overweight, large boned. Handsome on a guy (in my opinion lol), but not what my daughters want to be built like. I've been at maintenance for 2-3 years now, and they are definitely catching on to my habits of eating healthier, exercising, etc. One of them just started martial arts and is very proud of how strong she is becoming. They just started doing the fitness blender workouts which they've seen me doing for a while now. They will occasionally play wii Just dance also, and one of them wants to start running with me in the spring. They have a ways to go still with their weight, but I tell them they should be very proud of themselves for working on their health, and of course I tell them how beautiful they are (at 14 they don't believe me yet).