For most people, summertime means different schedules for both adults and kids, BBQs with friends and family, outdoor fun, and road trips.
All these fun activities and adventures can unfortunately have a negative side effect on your healthy eating habits and exercise routine. It can be tempting to indulge in second helpings or dessert because you’re having fun – but too much “fun” all summer long will likely leave you feeling not so great about yourself come September.
However, with some planning staying on track is easier than you think. I have compiled a list of 7 ways to stay active and healthy this summer while still enjoying the season to the fullest!
1. Go on walks and hiking adventures in new places
Instead of going to the beach or park and just laying on a blanket or sitting in a lawn chair, plan nature walks or hiking routes you have never explored before. Connecting with the forest and disconnecting from technology inspires new ideas, can be a learning experience for kids (and adults too!) and is a great way to de-stress. You can still hit the beach after for a swim.
2. Break your car co-dependency and head out on a biking trip
Map out your destination, pack some food and off you go! Cycling is a great form of cardiovascular activity and can be enjoyed by the entire family. Be sure to wear your helmet and ride in designated areas for safety.
3. Go homemade on the road
Things like raw veggies and hummus, watermelon, berries, tuna or egg salad sandwiches, homemade granola bars or cookies offer far more nutritional value than greasy concession stands or fast food joints. Being prepared when those hunger pangs hit is key.
4. Get the whole family playing outside
Whether you’re heading out for a week long camping trip or just a day at the beach, bring along bikes, balls, Frisbees, swimming floaties, badminton, and sand toys. Anything that keeps you and your family moving is a good choice – and lots of options might be necessary if your kids are used to entertaining themselves with video games.
5. Take your gym on vacation
Ensuring you bring along the tools you need to keep up on your workouts no matter where you might is ideal. Both exercise bands or the TRX Suspension Trainer are easy to travel with and allow you to do many different exercises in a very small space. Whether you like training outdoors or indoors you can get creative and squeeze in a workout.
6. BBQ Potluck? Bring salad!
If you bring a healthy option you’re likely to eat it! Enjoy the event but practice a little self-control and enjoy the spread of food and drinks in moderation. One way to do this is to have one plate of food and one drink and slowly and thoroughly enjoy it. Limit your nibbling and resist going back for seconds. It’s about enjoyment not deprivation but within a healthy limit.
7. Don’t drink your calories
Although enjoying alcohol in moderation is totally fine there are many down sides to drinking. Aside from the obvious – liver damage, change in mood, altered states of reality and dehydration – there is also a negative metabolic effect that happens. When you drink, your metabolic furnace (the fat burning abilities in your body) is turned off for several hours after alcohol enters your bloodstream. Therefore, if you want to maintain your current weight or achieve an increased fitness level, drinking alcohol should be limited or cut out completely.
Ultimately, I recommend making physical activity a part of your everyday and always prepare nutritious snacks before heading out. The warmer months are a great time for social gatherings, gardening, camping, swimming, biking and hiking. Enjoy your summer while staying active and healthy!
P.S. I could talk about fitness and nutrition all day. If you would like to chat with me, book your free 30 minute consultation call here.