Summer is a time of opposites. Getting a tan by a cold pool. Sweating on the sidewalk with ice cream. Motivation to look incredible in a swimsuit and invitations to BBQ’s, drinks on patios and food-filled vacations.
To help with this juxtaposition, here are 5 tips to help you stay sane, somewhat health-conscious and feeling great in tank tops this summer:
- Don’t waste calories when they aren’t worth it. Weekends are where summer really shines, so don’t blow calories during the weekdays when it’s not really worth it. Save those calories up for the weekends or times when you have a party or event where you’ll want to indulge a little more. One way to practice if you are tracking macro/calories is to calorie cycle. Say you’re trying to eat 1800 calories per day. You could eat 1800 calories every day OR you could eat 1600 calories Sunday-Thursday and eat 2300 calories Friday & Saturday. Same weekly average, but you get to enjoy more food on the weekend and might not even notice the fewer calories during the week when you are busy!
- Choose alcohol or fatty food. As much as I wish I could tell you that you can have it all, it’s very difficult to have fatty food, alcohol and weight loss at the same time. However, you usually can have two of the three. So if you’re going to be hitting some breweries, try to limit the nachos and pizza. If you’re going on a food tour, limit the alcohol that day. Your body doesn’t metabolize (break down) fat while it’s metabolizing alcohol so pick one over the other when possible.
- Increase your activity. It’s sunny, warm and beautiful outside; soak up that vitamin D and get outside! Add an after dinner walk to boost your steps. Walk/bike to happy hour or dinner instead of walking. All those steps will add up and even consider getting a step tracker to motivate you (or use the free iPhone app like I do)!
- Only eat when you are hungry. It’s tempting with maybe some extra time on our hands while on vacation or a long weekend to snack when we are bored or to fill the time with a happy hour and appetizer, even though we’re not really hungry. Take a second to evaluate if you’re really hungry and need that appetizer or snack. More often than not you might be happy with just a drink or even a lighter snack than your brain first wanted.
- Avoid the f*** it mentality. I call this the don’t throw your phone on the ground and then stomp on it strategy. Just because you had a gigantic brunch or a few extra drinks doesn’t mean your day/weekend/ or month should go out the window. You can “get back on track” at any time during the day or even halfway through the meal. There’s not rule that you need to finish your plate or that since you made one “unhealthy” decision the whole day is ruined. Learn to press the reset button any time and pick that spider-screen phone off the ground and carry on.
What are your best summer health tips? Share in the comments!