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Be an active role model and choose active transportation

(NC) Are you determined to stick to your physical activity goals in 2014?

It's true that at the beginning of every year, many of us overcommit to changes that we think we want or need. But come February, countless goals are broken with a return to bad habits. According to research in 2012, about 68 per cent of Canadians created New Year's goals, yet more than half of us broke those goals just one month later.

The resolution trick is to make them easy to implement and maintain so you can stick it out for the long-term.

Do you want your family to be more active this year, for example? One of the easiest ways to do that is to switch to active transportation. Rather than driving, pick up your sneakers, blades, or bicycle to get to your destination. Doing so can significantly contribute to the daily physical activity that is required for overall health.

Here are some tips from ParticipACTION to get you and your family active in ways that are simple and easy to implement:

• Encourage and support your children to engage in 'active' transportation, like walking and cycling to and from school;

• Take turns leading a 'walking school bus' with other parents in your neighbourhood;

• Instead of driving to recreational activities like hockey or dance class, factor some extra time to walk;

• Park the car a short distance from school or other destinations, and walk the rest of the way when it is not possible to walk the whole way;

• Rather than driving to the grocery store, why not make it a fun family activity by walking or cycling there?

If kids walked for all trips less than one kilometre, they would accumulate approximately 15-20 minutes of walking per trip... and that adds up. If you would like to know some additional ways to integrate active transportation into your family's lifestyle, visit

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