Disclosure: This post is sponsored by American Dairy Association Indiana and the NFL’s Fuel Up To Play 60 Program. Through a series of posts, I’ll be sharing information about Fuel Up To Play 60 and how you and your kids can get involved.
Just as we’re headed into the season where getting our kids to stay active gets tricky, local schools are working hard to inspire kids to get moving. You might remember last spring I wrote about Fuel Up To Play 60 (FUTP60), a partnership between the NFL and the National Dairy Council to encourage kids energize their bodies and minds by eating healthy, and to pledge to play 60 minutes per day. My local FUTP60 representative, Andrea McMurtry, answered all my questions and more about how to get involved with FUTP60.
I learned even more a few weeks ago when I attended FUTP60 Training Camp at the Indianapolis Colts practice facility. I know how hard it can be to get my own kids moving sometimes, especially when the weather turns foul and the siren call of technology is strong. I’d never really given much thought past my own struggles, but as I sat in a room filled with Physical Education, Wellness and Home Economics/FACS teachers, I realized the enormity of the task they face getting an entire school moving and eating well.
While there were stories of what makes their job difficult, there were even more inspiring examples of how they partnered with other teachers, students and parents to make a difference in the health and wellness of their communities. Kids are coming up with fantastic ideas on how to positively influence their peers’ eating and exercise habits. In the process they’re learning valuable life skills, such as presenting their ideas to school boards, budgeting, working with adults and peers, and leading by example.
The best part about it all? The kids are having fun. Last summer, Andrea and one of her Fitness Council students were selected to represent Indiana at the FUTP60 Student Ambassador Summit in Chicago. Not only is it a big honor, it gave Andrea and her student a chance to learn, play, and come back with a treasure trove of ideas to impact the health and wellness of local kids. While there, Andrea and her team won the Smoothie Contest. Beyond bragging rights, the winner also got to bring back a big fancy blender for their school. (FYI, the Food Services staff at Fishers Junior High LOVES Andrea McMurtry!)
I had to know more about this award-winning smoothie, so I begged Andrea to share her recipe with me. One taste and you’ll understand why they walked away with the win. Beyond making your belly happy, it will fuel you up for the day. So are you ready to “Ooh watch me, watch me” whip together the award winning Choco-Nae-Nae Whip Smoothie?!
Choco-Nae-Nae Whip Smoothie
4 cups vanilla yogurt
1 cup chocolate milk
4 frozen bananas
¼ cup sweet potato puree
½ cup rolled oats
Combine all ingredients in a blender and blend until smooth and no chunks remain. Pour into individual glasses and top with a swirl of chocolate syrup or granola if desired.
This makes 4 servings, so if you can’t finish it all try this handy trick: freeze it! I love freezing smoothies in these Ball plastic freezer jars. They’re perfect for stashing extras, and especially nice for those of us who aren’t always ready to operate the machinery required to make smoothies first thing in the morning!
Last spring Eli’s school wasn’t participating in FUTP60, but this school year they are, and the kids are pumped. Eli came home with a Game Planner (sporting a picture of one of our very favorite Indianapolis Colts, Coby Fleener) a couple of weeks ago. This activity book, provided by the NFL Play 60 Challenge and the American Heart Association, encourages kids to get 60 minutes of exercise every day. He’s been diligent about recording his active minutes in and out of school. As a bonus, he’s motivated to move more if he finds he hasn’t gotten his 60 minutes of play in for the day! No active FUTP60 program in your school? No problem! Any student can join. Just visit FuelUpToPlay60.com and click “Join.” Looking for another dairy-filled treat to fuel you up after a day of play? Check out my fun and easy no-churn cake batter ice cream!