So, now that summer is officially here and the weather is heating up, how do you keep yourself on track when frozen drinks and ice cream sound a lot more enticing, and much easier, than oatmeal or eggs? While you could just lay on the beach all day underneath an umbrella, you could also follow my easy tips to enjoy a healthy lifestyle this summer.
- Exercise in the early morning or later in the evening: I always find it nearly impossible to exercise when its 80+ degrees outside and the house is almost as hot. My trick for keeping on track – exercising in the morning when the house is still cool, or after the sun sets behind the trees. If you don’t have a lot of parasitic bugs in your area, you can also hit the outdoors during these time frames to enjoy reasonable weather and fresh air.
- Shop your local farm stand: While this may not be an option for some, in the summertime is when local fresh fruits and veges are bountiful. This is the closest thing you will get to organic fruits and veges, sans the overpriced tag. It’s also a great way to try new things – there are so many different kinds of tomatoes, berries, and melons, it’s unbelievable! I try to buy something I’ve never tried at least once a week if there’s an option. I will always remember the first time I saw pattpan squash – something I’d never seen before stopping at the local farmstand – and definitely really glad I tried it!
- Salads Rule: When the weather is 90°F and the relative humidity is at 82, what better way to keep cool than with salad? This plays off of shopping local where you can buy a wonderful head of lettuce for $1.00 and top with all the veges you want. Whether you feel like grilling or baking your own chicken or turkey breast, or deciding for the pre-cooked options at your local grocery store, a salad is always the perfect option for summer with natural salad dressing – that’s right, natural, not low-fat or non-fat…unless it’s naturally fat-free. You can even try a fresh fruit salad with a protein shake – it’s easy and healthy!
- Cool Off: One important thing to do in the summer is to keep yourself cool and make sure you’re getting in at least 64 ounces of water. I like to eat lots of watermelon and fresh fruits when it’s hot outside, but I also like other healthy frozen treats that don’t pack on the calories like ice cream can. I make my own frozen yogurt (think frozen blueberries mixed in non-fat plain yogurt), popsicles, or frozen fruit cubes to put in my water. Here’s an article on 5 ways to enhance your water. You can also opt for frozen yogurt, sherbert, or sorbet when you’re out for ice cream with family or friends.
- Summery Cocktails: You don’t have to remain alcohol-free or drink boring light beer because you’re trying to lose weight – especially in the summertime when you’re outside by the pool enjoying yourself with company. It’s way too easy to blow your diet on cocktails, which is why it is important to know your drinks. Opt for lower calorie options like a margarita on the rocks without salt (250 calories), a mojito (225 calories), or a white wine sangria(240 calories). Stay clear of such summery calorie crashers like piña coladas (875 calories) or strawberry daiquiris (675 calories) – these will have you over your calorie budget after two cocktails!
- Grill Your Favorite Foods: Yes, during the summer, the idea of baking meats or steaming veges inside the house is less-than-appealing. When the house heats up, ordering out sounds a lot better than cooking, which is why grilling is the perfect option. It doesn’t heat up the house, and you can enjoy being outside. It also offers a wide variety of menu options and is an easy way to eat lean. Whether you opt for barbecued chicken or grilled pork loin with a side of grilled vegetables (yes, you can easily steam veges on the grill inside a pocket of aluminum foil with chopped garlic, shallots, and a hint of olive oil.) There are so many tasty treats to enjoy fresh off the grill!
Have a great, tasty, grilled recipe, please share below!