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Two USAF FitFamily’s suggestions on fitness on a budget

If cost has kept you and your family from starting a fitness program, here’s good news. You don’t have to break the bank to take physical activity seriously. You don’t even need special equipment to have a successful workout. With a little foresight, you and your family can take advantage of everyday opportunities that will become part of your fitness routine. Consider these tips from two USAF FitFamily members - the O’Linn and the Fairlie families.

FitFamily members make workout fun - meet the O’Linn’s!
Staying active with every family member is the name of the game with the O’Linn’s and daughter Riley (12). CMSgt Timothy, at AFMC 72 SFS/S4 and wife Kay don’t just “watch” their daughter Riley play – they join in the fun! A favorite activity is horseback riding. Along with Riley, Mom and Nana (Pamela Wyatt) participate in trail rides and even competitive rides to stay fit. Entries or state park fees can range from as low as $5 and up to $50. Choosing to participate in a “benefit” ride can mean a tax deduction and support of a good cause. Timothy gets physically involved during Riley’s basketball and softball practices as assistant coach.
Time Investment – Daily
Activity Level – Moderate to High
Cost - $5-$50 per event

This USAF FitFamily loves to stay active – meet the Fairlie’s!
TSgt Jeffrey from AMC 621 CRW/ATSEV and Carol (retired TSgt) Fairlie will try nearly any sport - at least once! With son Joshua (8), they’ve grown to love running. While in Illinois visiting family, they all participated in the 5k “Turkey Trot” and much to the surprise of Jeffrey and Carol, Joshua finished ahead of them! While most children watch cartoons in the morning before school, Joshua turns to Sports Center for an update on the previous days’ sporting events! “Joshua is very sports minded so keeping him physically active is easy,” said Carol.
Time Investment – Daily
Activity Level – Moderate to High
Cost - $20 per person “Turkey Trot” entry fee

The FitFamily site serves as a motivator to consider new things!
Chief O’Linn recently participated in the Oklahoma City Marathon on a relay team.  Incentivized by things to do on the USAF FitFamily site, Timothy organized the five-member team who had fun despite a downpour of rain. “We were challenged with the terrain and of course the weather, but encouraged by one another and plan to do it again. We’ve even considered the USAF Marathon (if teams are allowed),” said Timothy.
Time Investment – Daily training for several months
Activity Level – Moderate to High
Cost - $300 team entry fee

Consider the benefit to the cost
Fitness bargains can be found in inexpensive products like hand-held weights, resistance tubing, jump-ropes, fitness balls, free streaming exercise videos online or even workout videos from your local library. The Fairlie's have served as host to kids during Challenger Sports, a week-long summer camp. In addition to the incredible experience of sharing with and supporting kids from other countries, they saved a considerable portion of the camp fee for Joshua. Carol encourages parents to visit  to learn about discounts and a wonderful summer experience for children.
Time Investment: Daily x 7
Activity Level: Moderate to High
Cost: $120 for single child (discounts for more than one child); $80 reimbursement for hosting

Log on FitFamily Goal Tracker for ideas on how to step it up with everyday activities!
So many activities can be more beneficial just by planning ahead. For example, take the stairs instead of the elevator, park farther away from your destination and get in some extra steps. Make it a family workout of household chores by mowing, weeding, raking, vacuuming and scrubbing to increase your heart rate – and it’s a great way have  together-time. Chief O’Linn participates in the 10,000 steps-a-day pedometer challenge and logs his result daily. The O’Linn’s find with a little effort and research, there is plenty of physical fitness activities for little or no cost.
Time Investment – Daily
Activity Level – Mild to Moderate
Cost – Price of a pedometer $6-$30

Get up! Get out! Get Moving!
The Fairlie’s involvement in physical activity has been inspiring to family and friends. Carol attributes getting her mom “off the couch” to simply posting pictures of herself engaged in her daily running regime on Facebook. Carol’s advice: “Get moving but start slow…you can’t enjoy the sport if you’re in pain. Keep it up and don’t give up!” The O’Linn’s suggest you pound the pavement by heading to a local park or museum. Advocating family time is an important message they want to convey. “You’ll never get that time back once it has passed,” states Chief O’Linn. “Anytime with your family is good!”
Time Investment – Daily
Activity Level – Mild to Heavy
Cost - Priceless

Invite family and friends to use USAF and
FitFamily offers service members and their families a wealth of resources and information on proper nutrition, sports and fitness, games, educational projects and a host of other tips and ideas to keep a family fit. Plus the newest section in USAF FitFamily called USAF LivingFit was designed to help US Air Force members and their families achieve their weight loss goals. With a busy military lifestyle in mind, it’s easy to use and supports members every step of the way – check it out at


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