Examples of ways FWAS can CONNECT with parents

Ensure that your site has a clear vision for parent engagement that includes engaging parents in Fitness & NEWtrition activities.

  • Does your site mission/vision reflect the importance of parent engagement and establish a foundation for parent engagement in afterschool activities?
  • Does your site have a well-planned program for marketing Fitness & NEWtrition activities?
  • Are policies and procedures in place to maximize parent engagement in your sites activities, services, and programs?
  • Does your have a friendly, welcoming environment for parents?
  • Does your site consistently reach out (weekly, monthly, quarterly) to parents to participate in and contribute to afterschool activities, services, and programs?
  • Is there a district-level parent involvement and engagement plan that can guide the development of a site plan for involving parents in afterschool health activities?

Ensure that program specialists and partial providers have the ability to connect with parents and support parent engagement in Fitness & NEWtrition activities.

  • Does your site have a dedicated committee of teachers, administrators, and parents, parent engagement and family communication specialists that help plan, implement, evaluate, and continually improve its outreach to parents and the quality of parent engagement activities?
  • Are there school health activities that address the interests of parents, such as healthy eating seminars?
  • Are program specialists provided with opportunities to learn how to increase parent engagement in all FWAS activities, including Fitness & NEWtrition activities?

Ask parents about their needs and interests regarding the health of their children and how they would like to be involved in Fitness & NEWtrition activities, services, and programs. For example, the following questions might be integrated into an existing site assessment:

  • What health topics are important to your family and your child?
  • What information would you like to receive related to Fitness & NEWtrition?
  • What simple changes or modifications would make FWAS’s physical environment more pleasant, accessible, and safe for parents and community members?
  • For parents with a child with an identified health risk, such as asthma, diabetes, or food allergies: how would you like to work with the school to most effectively manage your child’s health condition?



1.Your message board would create an open forum for discussion about Fitness & NEWtrition opportunities at your site—what is available currently and what families and community members would like to have available. This would open communication between the site supervisor, teachers, parents, campus administration and members of the community, by helping to gain insight and meet existing needs.

2.The calendar could announce Fitness & NEWtrition events occurring at your site, the school and in the community. In an effort to increase communication with the community, the site supervisor could invite community members to submit their events for posting.

3.Quick facts about healthy living are a great way to give community members digestible information. All information could be uploaded as a PDF document to the physical activity section of the web page. Updating the “quick facts” regularly will maintain community-wide interest.

4.In addition to the school web site, the site supervisor could use social media (e.g., Facebook, Twitter) to spread the word about upcoming events or healthy living facts to families and community members. If these social media do not yet exist at a site, FWAS could easily create a Facebook page or Twitter account and encourage parents, teachers, campus administration, and members of the school community to become raving fans the share the information with others.

5.FWAS should communicate with the members of the school’s parent-teacher association (PTA) about all of the activities that he or she coordinates. In addition to providing volunteer support for various activities (e.g., a field day), PTA members are a potential funding resource.


This section describes six common challenges to getting and keeping parents engaged in Fitness & NEWtrition meetings and activities and suggestions for reducing or eliminating these challenges. The suggestions are based on expert opinion and field experience and are not intended to be in priority order or exhaustive. Each site situation is unique, so some of the suggestions might work better at certain sites than others.


Solutions for six common challenges to sustaining parent engagement

  1. Parents are unable to attend Fitness & NEWtrition activities because of schedule conflicts (e.g., work, family, religious, and community activities).29,63,64

Suggestions to address the challenge:

Schedule meetings and activities to match varying parent schedules.

  • Survey parents to see which times/days are best for them.
  • Schedule more than one meeting and activity opportunity.
  • Schedule meetings and activities on a Saturday (offering teachers incentives for attendance).
  • Host meetings and activities during the day for parents who work or are unable to attend at night.
  • Host meetings and activities after rush hours.
  • Host FWAS meetings off campus, such as in community centers or places of worship.
  • Avoid scheduling meetings and activities that conflict with other school activities, major community events, and religious holidays.
  • Offer a variety of opportunities and flexible times for parents to volunteer.

Provide incentives to encourage parents to attend at-school meetings and events.

  • Provide child care.
  • Provide food or refreshments.
  • Award door prizes provided from community sponsors. For example, schools can ask healthy food companies to provide gift cards to be used as raffle prizes.
  • Make meetings fun with engaging activities and games.

Provide alternative ways for parents to access information and communicate with FWAS staff, aside from attending meetings and activities at your site.

  • Establish an e-mail or listserv for teachers, parents, community members and partial providers.
  • Create a phone number with 24-hour voicemail service for parents to voice concerns outside of regular FWAS hours.
  • Host a FWAS blog or online bulletin board.
  • Use forms of social media such as creating a secured Facebook page for your site, sharing updates via Twitter, and/or getting already involved parents to blog about FWAS events.
  1. Parents cannot attend Fitness & NEWtrition activities due to lack of transportation.

Suggestions to address the challenge:

Provide transportation.

  • Use school buses.
  • Use a shuttle bus for different neighborhoods.
  • For meetings that involve students and their families, extend school bus hours to pick up parents, too.
  • Create a shared FWAS community “ride board.”
  • Provide bus tokens or other public transportation fares.
  • Arrange parent carpools.

Hold events off site or online.

  • Go places where families will already be such as community centers, community organizations, neighborhood centers or housing projects, libraries, and churches.
  • Host online meetings with live feed (e.g., webinars, conference calls).
  • Create a podcast of a meeting and archive it online.
  1. Parents are uncomfortable at FWAS Fitness & NEWtrition events. This discomfort might be the result of negative experiences when they were in school, unfamiliarity with the site culture, or other factors.

Suggestions to address the challenge:

Provide opportunities for parents to get to know about your site, program specialists and partial providers in nonthreatening ways.

  • Host events that provide information to parents on how your program works and how you all can work together to promote the health and education of their children.
  • Host informal get-togethers.
  • Provide continuing education opportunities for parents.
  • Host parent-only social events at your site.
  • Allow FWAS students to serve as greeters, performers and volunteers at school sponsored parent meetings and activities.
  • Have a designated greeter to ensure that every family is welcomed.
  • Encourage program specialists to schedule a first interaction with parents specifically with a positive, pro-student purpose.
  • Invite parents to participate in a FWAS meeting or activity before there is a problem related to their children.
  • Promote the training and use of Fitness & NEWtrition parent peer leaders and mentors.
  1. Parents do not fully comprehend health information and communications provided at FWAS activities and meetings. This might be due to language barriers (non-English-speaking family members) or unfamiliarity with buzzwords used in the Fitness & NEWtrition industry .

Suggestions to address the challenge:

Provide translation services for non-English-speaking parents.

  • Provide translators at FWAS meetings and activities (volunteer or paid).
  • Ask parents or students (if appropriate) to volunteer as translators at Fitness & NEWtrition events and activities.
  • Provide FWAS publications and Web site resources in multiple languages.
  • Provide language-specific FWAS telephone call lines for families.
  • Host English as a Second Language (ESL) classes.

Reduce barriers to understanding information.

  • Avoid using professional jargon with families.
  • Prepare materials and provide information at the 8th-grade reading level or lower.
  1. FWAS site supervisors, program specialists and partial providers are not experienced or trained to work with parents and have trouble sustaining relationships and parent engagement efforts.

Suggestions to address the challenge:

Provide professional development opportunities for program specialists and partial providers that focus on strengthening parent engagement.

  • Offer a variety of topics (not all staff need the same professional development).
  • Provide a flexible schedule for professional development to accommodate program specialists’ and partial providers’ schedules.

Develop strategies for working through program specialist and partial providers resistance to change, turf issues, and power struggles that might hinder parent interactions.

  • Provide sample/model assignments that include parents.
  • Talk about their concerns related to parent engagement.
  • Provide coaching to on how to interact positively with parents.
  1. There is difficulty sustaining school administrative or financial support for parent engagement.

Suggestions to address the challenge:

Share data with the principal that demonstrates parent interest and the positive impact parent engagement has on educational and health outcomes.

  • Share data on assessments of parent needs and interests.
  • Present research that supports the positive impact of parent engagement.
  • Present health data such as from the Youth Risk Behavior Survey ( to show the health issues in the city.

Empower parents to speak up to school administrators about the positive impact of engaging parents in the Fitness & NEWtrition of students and the school.

  • Ask the PTA to communicate with the school administration about the benefits of parent engagement in FWAS Fitness & NEWtrition activities and possible actions that can be taken.
  • Invite school administrators, local media, celebrities, and school or health officials to attend Fitness & NEWtrition events to witness parent engagement in action.

Seek opportunities for financial support.

  • Engage local college/graduate students to write grant proposals.
  • Initiate strategies that require little or no financial support.
  • Solicit funds from community partners.
  • If your site is a Title 1 school, pursue funds from the 1% set-aside for parent engagement. Find more information at
  • Partner with a local PTA to apply for a Healthy Lifestyles Grant. Find more information at http://www.pta. org/pta_healthy_lifestyles_grant.asp.
  • Ask parents to share the cost of offering Fitness & NEWtrition activities and events at your site.

I’m not here to compete. I’m here to do everything to the best of my ability and complete the workout”

Peacock Taylor, Fitness & NEWtrition Strategist

Get Fit, Eat Smart

Hosted by Peacock Taylor, Fitness & NEWtrition Strategist

Hosted by Peacock Taylor, Fitness & NEWtrition Strategist


Every Power Hour Series FitCamp from Get Fit, Eat Smart consists of total body exercises that develop and advance the four key components of physical fitness:

  • Aerobic fitness
  • Muscular Strength
  • Balance/flexibility
  • and Improved Body Composition (lean muscle to fat ratio)


Every 30 days you can expect to see REAL results like these: 1-3% reduction in body fat 5-10 pounds of weight loss 1″-3″ decrease from waist Improved endurance Increased strength Improved posture Enhanced relaxation 100% gain in self confidence.


Get Fit, Eat Smart FitCamp’s can be performed anywhere, require no equipment, and are designed to accommodate groups of 10+ participants.

All sessions are adaptable to beginner, intermediate or advanced fitness levels.


Read More…

Am I healthy enough for The Power Hour?

Benefits of The Power Hour Series

What I need to know before attending the Power Hour?



Bring Get Fit, Eat Smart to your site/location!



Its often hard to know the difference between goals and objectives – in fact, we often use the two terms interchangeably. But knowing the difference can help us to use both in a constructive way, to get us from where we are to where we want to go.


Both are a Way of Moving Forward

The major similarity between goals and objectives is that the both involve forward motion, but accomplish it in very different ways. We can think of goals as being the Big Picture — where we hope that our efforts will ultimately bring us. Objectives are about a specific plan of attack — usually a series of them — each being relatively short-term in nature.

Goals: Changing Mindset and Direction

Goals tend to be long on direction, and short on specific tactics. For example, you can set a goal of losing 30 pounds without having a specific plan as to how to do it. You’ve defined the destination you want to arrive at, and tactics can be developed as you move forward.


We can think of a goal as doing the following:

  • Defines the destination
  • Changes the directon to move toward the destination
  • Changes the mindset to adjust to and support the new direction
  • Creates the necessity to develop specific tactics

Goals tend to change your mindset by changing your focus. And as your focus changes, it takes your thinking with it. This is why goals are often accompanied by affirmations, which involve projecting yourself into the desired (but as yet unattained) destination.

People set goals all the time, without ever being very specific.


Objectives: Establishing a Series of Concrete Steps

If goals are about the big picture, then objectives are all about tactics. Tactics are action plans to get from where you are to where you want to be. A goal defines the direction and destination, but the road to get there is accomplished by a series of objectives.

A good example of this is a person who wants to lose 100 pounds. Losing 100 pounds is the goal. But it is achieved by exercising 3 times per week with a Get Fit, Eat Smart Fitness Strategist and following a customized NEWtrition Prescription. The objective is to learn how to Get Fit & Eat Smart— through a series of smaller targets (3 fitness sessions and 1 NEWtrition session per week) that need to be hit in order to achieve the big picture goal of losing 100 pounds.

How Objectives Can Help You Reach Your Goals

In nearly any goal you want to reach you can use the lose 100 pounds example to help you get there. First, you define the goal — what ever it may be. Unless the goal is a small one and easily obtained, it’s usually best to break big goals down to a series of specific action steps — it’s a way of using the divide-and-conquer strategy to accomplish a goal that’s far too large to accomplish now.

The action steps have specific targets, as well as methods to reach them. Each target is an objective. Lose one pound and then the next until your goal and is completed.

Though goals generally control objectives, objectives can also control goals as they unfold. For example, since a goal is general in nature, it may be refined and altered as objectives are completed. The completion of an objective or a series of them, could cause you to either raise or lower the ultimate goal.

In this way goals and objectives can compliment each other.



Definition Something which you try to achieve A specific result that a person or system aims to achieve within a time frame and with available resources.
Time Frame Usually long-term. A series of smaller steps, often along the way to achieving a long-term goal.
Magnitude Typically involves life changing outcomes, like losing 100 pounds and building a stronger healthier body in 1 year. Usually a near-term target of a larger expected outcome, such as completing 3 strength training sessions and 3 cardio sessions this week.
Outcome of immediate action Actions tend to advance progress in a very general sense; there is often awareness that there are several ways to reach a goal, so specific outcomes aren’t necessary. Very specific and measurable, a target is established and victory is declared only when the target is hit.
Purpose of action A goal if often characterized as a change of direction that will ultimately lead to a desired outcome. Objectives tend to be actions aimed at accomplishing a certain task.
Example “I want to lose 100 pounds in 2015” “In order to reach my goal of losing 100 pounds in 2015, I need to complete 3 strength training sessions and 3 cardio sessions every week for 1 year.”
Hierarchy Goals tend to control objectives; a change in a goal could eliminate one or more objectives, or add new ones. An objective can modify a goal, but will seldom change it in a fundamental way, even if the objective isn’t reached.



Get Fit, Eat Smart provides Fitness & NEWtrition strategies to motivated, high-achievers who just happen to struggle with their weight.

Our services help you upgrade your ATTITUDE, discover your ABILITIES and develop the SKILLS you need to Eat More… Exercise Less and finally reach and maintain your FEEL GREAT WEIGHT!


Get Started TODAY

The Talk Test

Posted: January 19, 2015 in Uncategorized


To measure exercise intensity during your cardio session use a simple and effective technique called the “Talk Test.”

Using this method, the goal is to work at a level where you can answer a question, but not comfortably carry on a conversation. In simple terms, you’re working out too hard if you have to take a breath between every word you say. Conversely, you would be exercising too easily if you could sing the chorus of a song without breathing hard.

Work at an intensity that allows you to breathe comfortably and rhythmically throughout all phases of your workout. This will ensure a safe and comfortable level of exercise. If you are breathless, or can’t talk, you’re working too hard! Lower the resistance level and slow down. If you experience dizziness or lightheadedness, you may be overexerting yourself and should stop.

The talk test is subjective and quite useful in determining your aerobic intensity.

The talk test is subjective and quite useful in determining your aerobic intensity.

The Talk Test has been confirmed as a simple and accurate method of gauging intensity that doesn’t require any equipment or special training. Try your own Talk Test during your next workout. You may be able to replace your heart rate monitoring with this simple test during all of your workouts, or at least when counting your pulse is inconvenient.


Moderate Intensity vs. Vigorous Intensity

You may have seen recent talk in the media about the new guidelines for physical activity. The U.S. Government publishes these guidelines which discuss “moderate” and “vigorous” intensity. So what does that mean? Moderate intensity workouts provide health benefits such as reduced risk of high blood pressure, certain cancers, stroke and diabetes. Vigorous intensity workouts provide those benefits, plus aid in weight loss and increased muscle mass. Here is how to distinguish between the two:

Moderate activity ranges from 40-60% of someone’s max heart rate. For most people, that would be walking a mile in 14 to 23 minutes. Moderate-intensity activity causes a slightly increased rate of breathing, and it feels “light” to “somewhat hard”. Individuals doing this type of activity can easily carry on a conversation.

Vigorous activity elevates heart rate above 60% of your max heart rate. Walking a mile in less than 14 minutes, jogging, cycling, and playing endurance sports are all considered vigorous activity. These activities result in increased rates of breathing and sweating and feel “somewhat hard” to “very hard.”


Return to Exercise Less



Get Fit, Eat Smart provides Fitness & NEWtrition strategies to motivated, high-achievers who just happen to struggle with their weight.

Our services help you upgrade your ATTITUDE, discover your ABILITIES and develop the SKILLS you need to Eat More… Exercise Less and finally reach and maintain your FEEL GREAT WEIGHT!


Everyone knows that athletes must plan and time their meals and snacks very carefully to reach their performance goals.

But what about the rest of us?

If you’re like me, you try to squeeze in 30-60 minutes of exercise most days of the week. Do you have to be careful about what you eat before and after your workouts, too? Usually not.

If you’re eating a healthy diet and getting enough calories to support your activity level, you can probably rely on your own appetite, energy levels, and experience to tell you whether you need to eat anything before or after exercise and what it should be.

The basic rule here is: Find out what works best for you, and do that.

There are some advantages to knowing how your body  works and what it needs to perform at its best. The bottom line for healthy weight loss and fitness sounds simple: You have to eat fewer calories than you use up—but not fewer than your body needs to function at its best.

The size, timing, and content of your pre- and post-exercise meals and snacks can play an important role in your energy levels during your workout, how well your body recovers and rebuilds after your workout, and whether the calories you eat will be used as fuel or stored as fat. Here’s what you need to eat and drink to get the results you want!



As a moderate exerciser, you have a lot of flexibility when it comes to timing your meals and choosing your foods. The most important things are getting to know your body and how it responds to exercise, so that you can give it what it needs to perform at its best. Eating the right foods at the right times before you work out is essential to keeping your energy up, your workout performance high, and your body in fat-burning mode.


Fitness & NEWtrition Options