Today I’m sharing 5 tips for how to stay on track over the summer. It’s so easy to enjoy vacations and summer treats, but that doesn’t mean that your healthy lifestyle has to suffer.
I know it can sometimes be tough to keep a routine going throughout the summer when schedules change and kids are out of school if you have school aged kids. Create a summer routine if your kids are out of school.
Whether it’s staying the same of changing, knowing what to expect throughout the week can really help when it comes to making healthy decisions when it comes to food and physical activity.
Knowing that you’ll head to the gym first thing in the morning (even if “first thing in the morning” is later during the summer months than it is during the rest of the year) gives you a good start to the day.
One last point about trying to maintain as much routine as possible is that you already have your healthy habits in place. Even if you’re on vacation you can still start off your day at the hotel gym. Just because it’s summertime doesn’t mean that all of your healthy habits have to go out the window.
Keep your goals in mind
Knowing that I have goals tend to give me something to work towards, as well as focus and motivation. If I’m wanting to lose 10 pounds, I’ll order the fries as a side once or twice instead of every single time and instead opt for a salad.
I find that I make healthier decisions when I remember that I’m working for something. Making the decision to workout when I’m on vacation can be tough if I look at it from the point of view of one workout, but when I remember that I’m training for a 10K or want to improve me cardiovascular endurance, that decision to workout becomes a lot easier to make. It’s definitely a mindset thing, but it makes all the difference in my decision making.
Interested in learning more about goals? I wrote about how to set fitness goals and why setting fitness goals are so important. Both are worth a read if you want to set yourself up for success when it comes to goal setting.
Follow the 80/20 rule
If you don’t allow yourself to enjoy the summer with all the vacations, cook outs, and fun stuff that goes with it, life won’t be very much fun. Don’t deny yourself all the summer time treats and memories – just be mindful of them.
Enjoy that ice cream cone at the beach, but don’t eat one daily. Partake in the hot dog at the barbecue, just not 3 or 4 times per week. Balance your treats with vegetables, your skipped gym sessions with hikes with the family while on vacation.
You want to make sure that you enjoy the summer, but not let it be an excuse for making unhealthy decisions. I find that when I’m making a majority of healthy options most of the time, then I’m able to enjoy the treats more.
Summer is the perfect time to take advantage of the warm weather and pretty scenery and take your workout outdoors. Walking, biking, swimming, and hiking can all be great workouts. They can even be done with friends and family too so you can spend that time together. In addition, all those things can generally also be done when you’re on vacation too. Plan those activities into your days when you’re travelling and it won’t be a chore to get a workout in.
Calgary get so few months of nice weather where you can be outside without a ton of clothes, so I always try to take advantage of the summer months as much as possible.
Having the ingredients for meals in the pantry and fridge that I know I can make keeps me from going out to eat or ordering delivery on those summer nights when I don’t know what to make for dinner.
Instead of meal planning for 6 dinners for the week, you might only need to do 4 to account for barbecues and fun nights out. Even if you’re eating away from home more often during the summer, that doesn’t mean that you have to throw out meal planning all together. When you’re at home you’ll want to continue with the healthy meals.
I know that meals tend to be a bit more laid back during the summer in our family, so do what works for you. Taking a bit of time on Sunday (or really whatever day works for your) to take a look at your schedule and plan meals and ingredients always pays off. I feel more organized and I’m not trying to figure out at the last minute what to make for dinner when I’m already hungry.
For more on meal planning, I wrote about the benefits of meal planning and how I simplify meal planning. I share tips and tricks in both and are a good primer if you’re just starting out with planning your meals.
What’s a tip of yours for staying in track over the summer? Share it in the comments below.