What to do if your kids are getting chubby?

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Pergamum

Ordinary Guy (TM)
My kids have gotten a little chonky. What do I do?

p.s. I am also thick like a brick. But I've been powerlifting, so it is all power-gut you see and power-fat to fuel my strength gains. ;)

Any parental advice? I make them exercise. And we cook nutritious food. Trying to find them outdoor activities.
 

BayouHuguenot

Puritanboard Amanuensis
My kids have gotten a little chonky. What do I do?

p.s. I am also thick like a brick. But I've been powerlifting, so it is all power-gut you see and power-fat to fuel my strength gains. ;)

Any parental advice? I make them exercise. And we cook nutritious food. Trying to find them outdoor activities.
How old are they? Is it genetics or baby fat?
 

Pergamum

Ordinary Guy (TM)
How old are they? Is it genetics or baby fat?
15 year old boy. 12 year old girl. 9 year old girl. Then a 4 year old boy who is not fat. Seems both genetics and baby fat. And too much sitting time in front of computers for school, etc.

The 15 year old boy wrestles and lifts heavier weights than most of the Asian men at the gym here and has huge shoulders and chest. But also is just thick all over (like his dad). I am trying to do heavy weights for him to take advantage of his frame.
 

Pergamum

Ordinary Guy (TM)
Move to the US. They will fit right in.
They are average in America, methinks. But in Asia, it is different. We have trouble finding clothes here.

The plus side (I accidentally typed plus-size at first) is that my son grapples sometimes and they hear he is 15 and think, no big deal, then he literally throws adult men overhead and they are surprised. Ha ha, then he walks off the mat like a boss (a chonky boss). He has embarrassed a few guys pretty badly like that (it was great).

Of course, when their dad orders two steaks for dinner, that could influence their eating habits.

At 13 I was chubby. By the time I was 15 I lost the baby fat and grew muscle. By 18 I was built. But my son is 15 and still has some baby fat. We moved to a city so that I can recover my health and I know he would be drastically different if we lived back in the village. But there are sports teams here, but he doesn't feel interested. I was wrestling with him for awhile, but the excitement raised my cortisol and I could never go to sleep before 4am on nights we grappled. Lifting weights helps me to sleep. So I am trying to get him interested in working out, maybe powerlifting with me.


We are trying to have him weigh 3 times a week to give him a constant gauge on his weight.
 

Pergamum

Ordinary Guy (TM)
NOTE: I don't want to be too hard on my kids and ride them too hard for eating too much.

But then again, it is better to be nagged or even punished for overeating rather than grow up obese and unhealthy.

How hard should a parent push or punish for bad eating habits? "Don't eat that....you need to lose weight" I've said. "You've eaten enough!" I am sure many American parents would cringe or give me the side-eye if they heard me (but then again, they are probably fat).
 

greenbaggins

Administrator
Staff member
White flour is a big culprit, as is sugar. Don't know what his diet is, but taking those things out alone often accounts for twenty pounds.
 

Pergamum

Ordinary Guy (TM)
White flour is a big culprit, as is sugar. Don't know what his diet is, but taking those things out alone often accounts for twenty pounds.
We really try to limit flour and all sugar and all bread, really. But friends their age sometimes give them candy. Or their portion size is too big. Or good things like bacon are also "dense" foods.

They seem to gravitate towards the bad foods. We go out to a tea place, and they end up ordering the sugary tea instead of the more expensive tea that is unsweetened, etc. They eat a steak but slather it in ketchup which is full of high-fructose corn syrup.

In many little subtle ways, their choices seem to be sabotaging their health. Some of it is awareness. And some of it is just that those unhealthy foods draw us in and tempt us.

The bigger issue is how do I teach kids self-control? Diet is one aspect of that. They also watch tv too long if I let them, too. The ability to self-monitor and turn off the tv or close the mouth and eat no more, or to simply shut up and stop talking when they should do so...it is all not there yet. They are late if I don't remind them. They eat too much if I don't remind them. Etc.
 

Jeri Tanner

Moderator
Staff member
I’m not saying this as someone who has brilliantly succeeded (either with myself or my kids) in what I’m saying. But the answer from your posts seems pretty obvious- just don’t let them use or eat or have the extra carbs or calories or tv they’re consuming. It wouldn’t be cruel to deny them. But it can sometimes feel that way to us parents. :(
 

Hamalas

whippersnapper
Sounds like you're right that self-control/self-awareness is the real issue (which is the culprit for most of us as adults as well!)

With your 15 year old, why not task him with mapping out what his goals should be? Rather than you determining and enforcing, put the monkey on his back to figure out how much he should be eating, exercising, etc... Then go over his plan with him. Where he's being too lax, call him out. Where he's making a good choice, encourage and affirm.

Here's an example of how this worked out in my childhood growing up. When we were little kids, my Dad would always manage the remote when we watched stuff. If there was something inappropriate (language, violence, sensual content) he would be the one to fastforward, skip, or mute. But when we got to be young teens that changed. Now he would hand one of us the remote and tell us, "You're in charge of determining when to censer/edit what we're going to watch tonight." It was terrifying because you didn't want to let something go that should be caught. The responsibility to be discerning made us hyper-vigilant and forced us to think through what we were watching and whether or not it was wise and edifying. Most of the time, we teenagers were much stricter on the remote than my parents because we didn't want to make the wrong call with the whole family in the room!

So maybe delegate some of the responsibility to him but then supervise and followup. You're still the Dad and need to call the shots, but he's a young man and needs to feel the weight of the responsibility as well.
 

Pergamum

Ordinary Guy (TM)
I’m not saying this as someone who has brilliantly succeeded (either with myself or my kids) in what I’m saying. But the answer from your posts seems pretty obvious- just don’t let them use or eat or have the extra carbs or calories or tv they’re consuming. It wouldn’t be cruel to deny them. But it can sometimes feel that way to us parents. :(
I am trying. But as I recover from my own illness, I am not there to police them 24/7. This started when I fell very ill last year (often in bed for days). They need to police themselves and seem presently incapable to do so very well at this point. Of course, even adults have trouble with diets. So, for a kid it is much harder.
 

Pergamum

Ordinary Guy (TM)
Sounds like you're right that self-control/self-awareness is the real issue (which is the culprit for most of us as adults as well!)

With your 15 year old, why not task him with mapping out what his goals should be? Rather than you determining and enforcing, put the monkey on his back to figure out how much he should be eating, exercising, etc... Then go over his plan with him. Where he's being too lax, call him out. Where he's making a good choice, encourage and affirm.

Here's an example of how this worked out in my childhood growing up. When we were little kids, my Dad would always manage the remote when we watched stuff. If there was something inappropriate (language, violence, sensual content) he would be the one to fastforward, skip, or mute. But when we got to be young teens that changed. Now he would hand one of us the remote and tell us, "You're in charge of determining when to censer/edit what we're going to watch tonight." It was terrifying because you didn't want to let something go that should be caught. The responsibility to be discerning made us hyper-vigilant and forced us to think through what we were watching and whether or not it was wise and edifying. Most of the time, we teenagers were much stricter on the remote than my parents because we didn't want to make the wrong call with the whole family in the room!

So maybe delegate some of the responsibility to him but then supervise and followup. You're still the Dad and need to call the shots, but he's a young man and needs to feel the weight of the responsibility as well.
Good thoughts. Thanks.
 

Charles Johnson

Puritan Board Freshman
I had a cousin who was chonky for years, and his dad was a health teacher, football coach, track coach, etc, and was also a little chonky, but lifted, so he could also pass it off as power-chonk. So on the whole, a similar dynamic. It turned out my cousin wasn't getting enough quality sleep because of medical issues, so once that was resolved, he had a lot more energy. On top of that, when he went to college, he met a pescatarian RCA girl who convinced him that eating salads and nuts was the way to her heart, and he starting working out routinely. He looks great now.
So I guess make sure your kids are getting quality sleep, and if all else fails, have them date hippies?
 

W.C. Dean

Puritan Board Freshman
I'm seventeen. In the summer I look long walks in the heat of the day plus some other cardio and lost almost 20 pounds. Not sure if it works for everyone but cardio works like a dream for me. I didn't even really change my diet.
 

Pergamum

Ordinary Guy (TM)
I had a cousin who was chonky for years, and his dad was a health teacher, football coach, track coach, etc, and was also a little chonky, but lifted, so he could also pass it off as power-chonk. So on the whole, a similar dynamic. It turned out my cousin wasn't getting enough quality sleep because of medical issues, so once that was resolved, he had a lot more energy. On top of that, when he went to college, he met a pescatarian RCA girl who convinced him that eating salads and nuts was the way to her heart, and he starting working out routinely. He looks great now.
So I guess make sure your kids are getting quality sleep, and if all else fails, have them date hippies?
Got it. Sleep more and date hippies. Or lift more for the power-chonk (which I have achieved). Switch his diet of pure bacon to salad and nuts.
 

Pergamum

Ordinary Guy (TM)
I'm seventeen. In the summer I look long walks in the heat of the day plus some other cardio and lost almost 20 pounds. Not sure if it works for everyone but cardio works like a dream for me. I didn't even really change my diet.
Got it. More walking. I will walk with him to lean down, too.
 

Pergamum

Ordinary Guy (TM)
How about cross country running? He may not be built for it but you never know......
I ran a marathon once, but they had a special category for guys over 200lbs like me, the "Clydesdale Division" ha ha. I benefited from jogging a bit, but it kept off my muscle gains (when I switched to sprinting for cardio instead of long long jogs of 5-15 miles, my muscles grew big). So, I am not sure if it is a good fit for the type of body frame they inherited. Some folks are built like gazelles and others like bears.
 

C. M. Sheffield

Puritan Board Senior
If you are concerned about your children's weight, you should...
  1. Monitor the quality and quantity of the food they eat and make adjustments where needed. This will likely vary from child to child.
  2. Make sure they are getting plenty of exercise, especially if you have a kid that is a couch potato.
  3. Take time to teach them about moderation, healthy eating, exercise, and maintaining a healthy weight as ways to be of greater use to God.
Ultimately, it's not rocket surgery and there are no silver bullets. And my wife and weren't perfect, But with six of our own, these are the things we have had to reevaluate from time to time.
 
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De Jager

Puritan Board Freshman
Running, drink lots of water, and lay off the sugar.

Also, keep in mind that by 20 years old he will probably look a lot different. Some kids are just a bit overweight until they sprout up.
 

Susan777

Puritan Board Sophomore
I ran a marathon once, but they had a special category for guys over 200lbs like me, the "Clydesdale Division" ha ha. I benefited from jogging a bit, but it kept off my muscle gains (when I switched to sprinting for cardio instead of long long jogs of 5-15 miles, my muscles grew big). So, I am not sure if it is a good fit for the type of body frame they inherited. Some folks are built like gazelles and others like bears.
“Clydesdale Division”. That’s funny!
 

Frosty

Puritan Board Sophomore
Ha ha, then he walks off the mat like a boss (a chonky boss). He has embarrassed a few guys pretty badly like that (it was great).

Chonky Boss, I like it.

How can I change my screenname to Chonky Boss?
 

Pergamum

Ordinary Guy (TM)
Ha ha, then he walks off the mat like a boss (a chonky boss). He has embarrassed a few guys pretty badly like that (it was great).

Chonky Boss, I like it.

How can I change my screenname to Chonky Boss?
You haven't EARNED the nickname Chonky Boss, yet, until we arrange a match with my son. He gonna tear you up!

This is the same kid that walked 7 hours through jungle with me and who swam across our river with his hands tied together and a rock in his shirt to show the tribal highlander adults that they won't drown if they just stay calm and repeat a few basic swimming strokes (we had to pull a few folks out of our river so my son helped teach them how to swim). Underneath that remaining baby fat is the eye of the tiger! ;)

Plus, your name right now is Frosty, 'cause you a Snowflake!
 
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RobertPGH1981

Puritan Board Sophomore
Probably genetics.. My dad was a twin and he was tall and trim (mesomorph) and my uncle was built like a house tall and beefy (endomorph). I am like my dad and my cousin is like his dad, so it most likely is genetics. My cousin power lifts and benches presses 350lbs + to give you an idea of strength.

But if you want them to slim down Cardio is best (running, cycling), or you could have them take advantage of their genetics and power lift. Mesomorphs are great at strength exercises since their frame and muscle supports excessive amounts of weight. My body type is good for power/cardio work... Based on their body type depends on how the person should workout to trim down. Check this basic article out...

muscleandstrength.com/articles/body-types-ectomorph-mesomorph-endomorph.html
 

bookslover

Puritan Board Doctor
Am I hallucinating or is this thread a re-run? Didn't Pergy - or someone - ask this before? Maybe it's just my fat getting in the way of my brain!
 
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