I LOVE summer! It is my favorite time of year. I grew up in Indiana, so by the time summer rolled around, the long days, the warm weather, and the fact that we had all just been cooped up inside for months made this the absolute best time of the year. But with summer, there come family vacations, changes of routines, and eating on the road. Here’s three quick and easy tips to help you get through the summer without derailing your health and fitness habits.
Pack your own food for the airport, plane, or car. As you travel, one of the things that people often enjoy most is trying the different food specialties around the world. You wouldn’t dream of going to Italy and not having the pasta. I wouldn’t dream of going to Chicago and not having pizza or Italian beef. As I sit at a table and savor the experience of my trip, I often feel that every calorie is worth it. However, the chips, nuts, cookies, and all the other snacks that are served on a plane now offer very little nutritional value, and most of the food in airports are fast food restaurants that you could probably skip and never miss anything. Everything is about balance. Enjoy what you love, but skip the extra calories that you really aren’t savoring!
Get a little bit of exercise any time you can. We often think that if we can’t get to the gym for an hour plus sweat session that it isn’t worth our time. Most people in Europe don’t really go to gyms or schedule a ton of exercise, but they use public transportation and walk almost everywhere! They are literally “sneaking” in 10-20 minute exercise walks six to eight times a day. Go out and walk around the city you are visiting. Go walk around the airport while you’re waiting for your plane. Take the stairs vs. the elevator. Use a bathroom sink as a barre and plie as you brush your teeth. Every step or activity adds up to calories burned and weight lost.
Hydrate. When we travel, we often get out of our routines! We get busy and don’t do some of the simplest things to improve our health. Often, we are thirsty (and dehydrated) when we think we are hungry. When you get on a plane, you seem to get even more bloated and dehydrated. Rather than sugary drinks, ask your flight attendant for a cup of water 4-5 times throughout your flight. Start a meal at a restaurant with a big glass of water. Bring your own (empty) water bottle to the airport and fill it up after security at one of the water fountains. Just stay hydrated. You’ll feel better, eat less, and keep your body properly flushing out its waste.
As you go into summer, this is a time of fun, family, and adventure. Your routines will be hard to keep, but by doing just a few good (small) things for yourself, you can avoid weight creep and not feel left out or deprived. Summer weight loss is just a few simple steps away!