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GENERAL: How can I help my parents have better cardiorespiratory fitness?

Adults are often less active and less fit than teens. Adults are also nearly four times more likely to be overweight than teens. You can help your parents and other adults by discussing your concerns with them (that you know cardiorespiratory fitness is important for them too) and doing some of these things:

Ask the person (or people) to walk with you. A 30-minute walk is recommended for adults, but if the person is not often active, even a 10- or 15-minute walk is better than nothing. Try to find a regular time for a family walk.
Share information about good nutrition learned in this class and in this book. Let the person know that you are interested in eating healthy foods with him or her.

If the person smokes, encourage him or her to stop. Smoking hurts cardiorespiratory fitness and is a leading cause of heart disease. Smoking in the home exposes other family members to secondhand smoke and can harm them.

Research indicates that teens can influence their parents and other adults. When teens work together with adults, they are more active and eat better, which result in better fitness, lower body fat, and better health for all concerned.