Have you ever wanted to eat healthier, cook more nutritious meals for your family or teach your children about the importance of exercise? Mother’s Day is a great time to make a resolution to improve yourself and commit to something that betters you and your clan. Take steps forward by teaching your children valuable life lessons and choosing to be the mom who leads by example.

It’s a Mental Game

Think about the results of an “I can’t” mentality and how it translates to your children. Once you are able to understand the negative effects of “I can’t,” you can then begin to change your attitude and behaviors regarding your physical and mental well-being. The best defense you have for being the greatest mom possible is good health. Without it, it’s difficult to optimally perform your parental duties. If you exercise and implement healthy habits, you’ll begin to see positive changes.

Conquering Your Fears

Have you ever wished you could take a spin class or go to the gym but have been too intimidated? Often, people are afraid to try new ventures because of fear of judgement. To put apprehensions on the back burner, recite to yourself, “I can do it!”

If you’re new at the gym, inform the staff. If you need help, don’t hesitate to ask for assistance. Fitness instructors are willing to embrace you and guide you on getting started. They are there to assist you before and after classes. And don’t forget to push yourself with positive affirmations.

Living Proof

Danielle Devine grew up with a fitness guru for a mom. She was born to live a life consisting of encouragement. The words “I can” and “adventure” were regulars in her daily vocabulary. Simply put, Devine’s mother taught her at an early age how to walk the walk.

Devine was bred for a thrill-seeking, active life. She and her mother embark on exciting journeys together, including a recent trip to Mexico. The pair also taught a spin class together this past Mother’s Day. Devine glows from the inside out when speaking of her mom. You can see the twinkle in her eye, as well as the appreciation, love and gratitude she feels toward her mother when she talks about her childhood.

Living proof that the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree, Devine was introduced to fitness at age 3 when she took aerobic classes at her mom’s fitness studio. Growing up, she participated in gymnastics, figure skating and studied pointe work from 13-18 years old. She graduated from New York University as a theater major. Choosing good health was not an option. “My mom always cooked healthy meals, no meat, and we sat down to dinner every night. Going out to dinner was rare. We are a family that makes time for each other and enjoys it. My favorite meal is my mom’s chickpea glop. Eating healthy was all I ever knew throughout my life. I remember when I went to look for a dorm room in college, I requested one with a kitchen so I could cook my meals. I buy my groceries at green markets in season and health food stores,” Devine says.

Thanks to her positive upbringing, determination is Devine’s driving force. At 24 years old, she is part of an amazing team of spin instructors at Flywheel Sport NYC where she leads teacher training and helps with marketing. She is also a budding actress in NYC.

What’s the Goal?

Raising tykes to live healthier lifestyles fosters confidence, which makes them more likely to exercise and understand the importance of their well-being. The goal is to have youngsters be active and conscious about what they put into their bodies. This ideology also aids in the fight against childhood obesity.

In the end, being healthy begins with you. It is simple. Just say, “I can!” One of the many wonderful benefits of being a mom is that you can lead by example. So teach your kids to love who they are by taking care of their bodies and minds.

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  • Beth Elgort

    Beth Elgort, LCSW, is a licensed clinical social worker and founder of The MBA Program, Mind. Body. Awareness. In the past, Elgort was a clinical social worker at the Holliswood Hospital in Queens and was the program director for Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at Brunswick Hospital on Long Island. She presently has a private practice in Manhattan and Long Island where she works with individuals, teens, couples and families. Elgort also substitute teaches for spin classes in NYC. She can be reached for private consultation and guest speaking engagements at [email protected]. Learn more at www.thembaprogram.com.