Healthy Abbotsford Blog

107 Answers to “what should we do today?”

Information from Tourism Abbotsford.

107 Days of Summer is an unique daily guide indentifying fun and intersting activities for the entire summer in Abbotsford. This is the perfect answer to ” what should we do today?” Check out 107 answers of how to spend a day in the beautiful Fraser Valley.

Printed guides are available at the Visitor’s Centre (34561 Delair Road) or download your copy here!

107 days of summer banner

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Top 6 Outdoor Adventure and Camping Blogs

This information is from www.healthyfamiliesbc.ca.

Growing up I was fortunate that our family would go camping several times each summer. It was nothing fancy; we’d set-up camp at provincial parks and entertain ourselves with beach activities, berry picking, and some hiking. Sure, we got dirty and got one too many mosquito bites, but the memories of spending time together as a family and having lots of fun were worth it!

Packing suggestions: If the whole family is going camping, simple low cost items like a Frisbee™, beach or sports ball can get everyone off their lounge chairs and playing games together. A pail and shovel for playing in the sand and making sandcastles can provide hours of fun. For those heading out with a partner or a group of friends, pack your running shoes for jogs or hikes, and a swim suit for the beach (don’t forget the sunscreen!).

To read the rest of the article and see what the top 6 Outdoor Adventure and Camping Blogs are, click here.

Here in Abbotsford, you can also have fun outside with our Live 5210 Playboxes. Click here for more information.

Picture of a Playbox

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MEND – FREE Healthy Living Program for Families

What is it?

MEND is a fun, FREE 10 week program for families with 7-13 year olds who want to learn more about healthy behaviours. The program supports families to live a healthy lifestyle. Groups of up to 15 children, accompanied by at least one parent or caregiver meet with program leaders twice a week for 8 weeks. The first hour is an interactive family session on nutrition and behaviour topics, followed by one hour of fun exercise for the children, while parents and caregivers meet for support and discussion on topics such as goals and rewards, label reading and problem solving.

This program is open to all families with a priority given to families who have a child who is above a healthy weight.

When is it?

Our current program just started and we can accept new registrations until Feb. 10. Sessions take place Tuesdays (6-8pm) and Saturdays (9:30-11:30am) at Eugene Reimer Middle School.

Families that attend at least 80% of the sessions will also receive a FREE 3 month pass to Abbotsford recreation centres at the end of the 8-week program!

Where do I get more information?

For more information, or to register, please contact Brenda Adams at mend@abbotsford.ca. You can also put your name down on the waitlist for our session starting in April.

flyer showing kids having fun

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The Most Powerful Drug – August 28 Event

On August 28  one of the world’s leading experts on physical activity and health. Dr. Steven Blair will be doing a public presentation at Matsqui Centennial Auditorium (MCA) from 7-8:30pm. The presentation will include the latest research around what the real impact of physical activity is on our health and he will end the session with time for the public to ask questions.

Not sure who Steven Blair is? Here are a few links that you can visit to get a better sense of what he is all about:

Video (9 minutes) - 23.5 hours

This YouTube sensation (more than 3.5 million views)  which includes Dr. Blairs research

 

Article – Fit vs. Fat, are they mutually exclusive? A case study.

Audio (4 minutes) – Is sitting the new smoking?

This session will also highlight how Healthy Abbotsford is helping promote physical activity and will launch Abbotsford’s  “Exercise is Medicine” initiative.

There will also be an information booth set-up from 5:30-9pm outside of MCA where you can learn more about what is available here in Abbotsford.

EIM - Public Presentation

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It Only Takes 15 Minutes

Taking time every day to read or do a learning activity with children is crucial to a child’s development. Even just 15 minutes a day can improve a child’s literacy skills dramatically, and can help a parent improve their skills as well.

This Saturday (January 26) is Family Literacy Day. To find out what is happening in Abbotsford click here.

ABC Life Literacy Canada has some fantastic, simple tips that will encourage healthy development for your children:

In honour of Family Literacy Day’s 15th year, ABC Life Literacy Canada is encouraging Canadian families to have “15 Minutes of Fun” learning together. Learning can happen at any time. Practicing literacy together for just 15 minutes a day has tremendous benefits for both children and parents. Here are some great ways to get started:

  1. Create your own comic strip about your family.
  2. Invent two new endings to your favourite book.
  3. Make up a new recipe together and post it online.small girl coloring
  4. Tell knock-knock jokes together while doing the dishes.
  5. Sing five songs really, really loud!
  6. Invent a new game while playing at the park.
  7. Read a story to your pet (or favourite toy).
  8. Make a paper fortune teller with eight fortunes.
  9. Write a silly poem and tell it to your family at dinner.
  10. Log on to your favourite word game – can you beat your best score?
  11. Create your family tree.
  12. Play rhyming “I Spy” – “I spy something that rhymes with…”
  13. Play a board game together.
  14. Text your friend and tell them about your holiday.
  15. Find 15 things that begin with the letter “S”.

For more information, or more ideas, visit ABC Life Literacy Canada.

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The Real People of Abbotsford

This time of year we get bombarded with images and videos of super fit, beautiful people that seem to have everything figured out. Their life is great and if you buy whatever product they are selling your life will be great too. Right.

So, how about being inspired by some real life people, who live right here in Abbotsford, who have actually made changes to live a healthier life?

ParticipACTION has a wall of inspiration where anyone can share their story. Click here to learn about the real people of Abbotsford who are changing their lives for the better.

picture of a map

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7 Reasons to Exercise in a Group

Getting active and staying active can be a challenge. There are lots of things that can derail us from our good intentions. If you are struggling to find a way to incorporate physical activity into the way you live your life you will want to read this article from ParticipACTION. It touches on 7 reasons on how exercising in a group can help you. The most important thing about physical activity is finding something that you enjoy doing. When you enjoy something you put in more effort, it doesn’t feel as hard and you are way more likely to stick with it. And sticking with it is the the only way that you will have long-term success. Click here to read the article.

There are lots of group fitness classes to choose from in Abbotsford. Click on the name below to get more information on group fitness classes:

City of Abbotsford

VRC Fitness

Go Fusion Fitness

GoodLife Fitness

Great West Fitness

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Is Exercising Outdoors Better For Your Health?

The Peninsula College of Medicine and Dentistry looked at a number of different research studies and found that “compared with exercising indoors, exercising in natural environments was associated with greater feelings of revitalization, increased energy and positive engagement, together with decreases in tension, confusion, anger and depression. Participants also reported greater enjoyment and satisfaction with outdoor activity and stated that they were more likely to repeat the activity at a later date.” Click here to read the full article.

Did you know that Abbotsford has over 100km of trails? There is no better way to exercise outdoors than spending time on the trail. With over 100km where do you start? Here is the great part, it doesn’t matter! You can start anywhere! Click on the picture below to access an online trail map. This map has a lot of great information, including:

  • which parts of the trail are paved, gravel or dirt
  • where the off-leash areas are for dogs
  • location of parks (it also lists what amenities are available at each park)
  • trail distances

Summer is a great time to get outdoors, see you on the trail…

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Don’t Waste the Long Weekend!

With the long weekend approaching, what are your plans? Don’t wait to think about until Saturday morning and risk wasting time with the “what do you want to do?”, “I don’t know, what do you want to do?” game. Get out, have some fun. Use this extra time to explore our city with your friends and families. Make some memories!

The 2012 guide “107 Days of Summer” is now available. Take a look through, you are bound to find a few things that spark your interest.

Summer will be over before you know it, don’t waste it.

cover of 107 days of summer brochure

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World Health Day 2012 – This Saturday!

Information from the World Health Organization website:

Every year, World Health Day is celebrated on 7 April to mark the anniversary of the founding of World Health Organization (WHO) in 1948. Each year a theme is selected for World Health Day that highlights a priority area of concern for WHO.

The official slogan for World Health Day 2012 is “Good health adds life to years”. Ageing is inevitable, but everyone ages differently. Even if we are young at heart, we need to maintain our physical, mental and social well-being to stay healthy and independent well into old age. Beyond our wish to add years to life, we need to add life to years.

Here are some key facts about Ageing:

  • The number of people today aged 60 and over has doubled since 1980.
  • The number of people aged 80 years will almost quadruple to 395 million between now and 2050.
  • Within the next five years, the number of adults aged 65 and over will outnumber children under the age of 5.
  • By 2050, these older adults will outnumber all children under the age of 14.
  • The majority of older people live in low- or middle-income countries. By, 2050, this number will have increased to 80%.

So, as you read this post I challenge you to think about how you can help improve the physical, mental or social well-being of an older adult this week. Here are some ideas:

  • Call or visit an older family member and reconnect with them
  • Volunteer at an assisted living facility – many older adults in these facilities have few visitors
  • Strike up a conversation with an older adult while waiting to buy your groceries
  • Set up a time for your kids to hang out with their grandparents

Remember, good health adds life to years!

World Health Organization logo

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