You may thank that figuring out how to stay healthy in the summer would be pretty easy, and for some people it probably is. If you’re like me, you’ve probably seen those fitness fanatics jogging by your window when it’s 95F outside and wondered how they do it. I’m one of those people who loses any energy I may have as soon as the temperatures rise above 85F. Add to that the fact that I’ll be fifty in a few months, and you can probably understand my struggle.
Realistically, we all know how to stay healthy. We hear it from our doctors, see it on television and probably have friends that make well-intentioned comments. We need to eat less, drink more water, move more and eliminate our vices. Accomplishing those four things is another thing entirely. I’m far from perfect, but these tips help me stay on track most of the time:
Keep the junk out of the house. You can’t eat it if you don’t buy it. Chips, brownies, ice cream, frozen pizza, etc. Whatever your weakness is, don’t bring it home. It won’t hurt the kids not to have it, and if your husband wants it, he can buy his own. Instead, stock the house with healthy treats you’ll eat.
Make it easy. I’m busy. Most of us are. When faced with a whole melon that needs to be seeded and cut up, I’m much more likely to grab a cookie. Buy the melon (or whatever else) already cut up. Most grocery stores sell big bowls of chopped up fruits and vegetables for a relatively reasonable price. Yes, you’ll pay more, but you’ll find you eat it more often.
Set reminders on your phone. I forget everything unless I write it down or set a reminder. Reminders work for remembering to take your supplements, meeting a friend for an afternoon walk, or drinking eight glasses of water in each day. If you like apps, you can find them for checking your heart rate, recording what you eat, tracking your monthly cycle, counting carbs and any number of other health goals.
Don’t let the heat stop you. I look forward to my daily walk each day, but when the day is sweltering and humid, it’s much harder for me to make myself move. To help, I walk twice a day – once in the early morning and once after dinner – when the temperature is cooler. I cut the distance in half and do half each time, so I’m not pushing myself. If the temperatures are oppressive all day, get your exercise inside. Many shopping malls open an hour early for indoor walkers. Or, head to the beach or the local swimming pool and go for a swim instead of a walk. If you enjoy it, head to a fitness center and do your exercise while enjoying the air conditioner.
Spend time outside in the sun (with sunscreen). Spending time outside can help your moods and increase your level of Vitamin D. Make yourself go outside for at least 30 minutes a day to enjoy the sun. Make sure you cover up with an SPF of at least 30 and wear your sunglasses to protect your eyes. Take up gardening, go for a walk, toss the ball to the kids, walk the dog. It doesn’t matter what you do, as long as you do it outside.
Don’t let the heat or your age stop you from being healthy this summer. Take baby steps and work on incorporating a few of these new habits into your summer fun and you’ll find yourself feeling better in no time.
Ellen LaFleche-Christian is a busy mom of an 18-year-old son and 23-year-old daughter. She owns 5 blogs and is addicted to social media. She believes that it doesn’t have to be difficult to lead a healthy life. She shares simple healthy living tips to show busy women how to lead fulfilling lives. Go visit her site at Confessions of an Overworked Mom