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  1. #1
    Euphoric !
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    What is a reasonable expectation?

    I'm home with my daughter now who just turned 4 last week. We have the opportunity to do some fun things during this time before the baby comes but she is finding it hard to walk so much to get to places. We live in Toronto and my husband has the car during the day so we are riding transit. We went to go swimming today but the 20 min walk to the bus stop was definitely hard for her. She isn't used to the distance as I didn't venture far with the daycare kids because a lot of them struggled to walk a great distance. Is it just a matter of her getting used to it? I don't want to bring a stroller or a wagon on the bus because its crowded and a hassle, plus she's 4! My older daughter walked everywhere by 2.5/3 but she was also used to this as I was on mat leave with baby #2 and we were out and about everywhere. I guess I just think it's sad when I see 4/5 and 6 yr olds being pushed around in strollers by their parents. I understand in some circumstances but it's much better for them to get exercise. Am I being unrealistic?

  2. #2
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    I don't think your expectation is unreasonable! It just might take a bit to get her used to the exercise!!

    Try leaving really early to catch the bus. Then you can wander slowly...maybe play I Spy or something silly along the way to distract her.

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  4. #3
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    I agree, I don't think it's unreasonable! She may just need to get used to it though. Our walks are anywhere from 30-60 minutes (mind you this is sauntering along, stopping to play etc) but 20 minutes for a 4 year old is totally doable

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  6. #4
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    As the others have said, not unreasonable but it will take time to get used to. Keep the pace slow and distract her by chatting. Does't help that it is winter and she is in extra layers.

    Have fun!

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  8. #5
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    You are 8+ months pregnant - I think if you can do it, she can too.

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  10. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by kindertime View Post
    You are 8+ months pregnant - I think if you can do it, she can too.
    Heh heh, good point!

  11. #7
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    Thanks for the feedback. I didn't bother asking parents that I know because I do find a lot of parents here do rely on strollers in Toronto. I think a lot of this is just "big city living" and a lot of people don't have or use cars often but a stroller is a fast mode of transportation. I've always encouraged walking. As a kid I lived in the suburbs so we walked everywhere close (school, park etc) but did use the car a lot to travel anywhere else because everything is so spread out. Thanks for the perspectives.

  12. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by torontokids View Post
    Thanks for the feedback. I didn't bother asking parents that I know because I do find a lot of parents here do rely on strollers in Toronto. I think a lot of this is just "big city living" and a lot of people don't have or use cars often but a stroller is a fast mode of transportation. I've always encouraged walking. As a kid I lived in the suburbs so we walked everywhere close (school, park etc) but did use the car a lot to travel anywhere else because everything is so spread out. Thanks for the perspectives.
    I can see why a stroller may be needed in busy traffic areas, when you have a time crunch. But if you have time, then kids are capable of big things. If you think about it, children elsewhere in the world have to walk long distances and have no strollers or cars. They are just used to it. It is their norm.

    The key is slowly training them and having realistic expectations. They will not walk as fast as us so we need to slow down the pace. They will forget the end goal (getting to a fun location) so need distractions along the way and most of all, they will get distracted by the sights around them so we need to turn the walk itself into a part of the experience. Build in time to stop and 'smell the roses' so to speak.

    My daughter has despised the stroller since birth. It is a very expensive high tech off road stroller. Or, as we call it...the most expensive diaper bag carrier around. But my daughter will happily walk for long periods (she's done 2-3hrs walks at ages 1.5 and 2.5 to see the pumpkin-inferno exhibit for example). The catch is...something that takes us adults 30minutes now takes 3hrs :-) because we not only move slowly, but we stop to look at everything. And we backtrack to relook at things. Plus snack breaks.

    My point being, children can happily adapt to our expectations as long as they are realistic and worthwhile. Which was the point of your post, are you being realistic. Yes, your daughter can get used to the walks you have been doing...will she do it in time for baby's arrival - not so sure! But, once baby is here, you have recovered and start venturing out again she will build that endurance and she, like your older daughter, will be capable of happily taking those walks.

    I recognize that many families just don't have the time and means to get their children used to the same walks. Our lives nowadays are pretty fast paced. Leisurely strolls are hard to come by with dial income families, full time daycare, evening activities and population dense neighborhoods.

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