As summer approaches we start to see all of these videos, blogs, and ads about getting in shape quickly and getting a bikini body. First, why is this special to summer? Shouldn’t we want to be fit and healthy all year round? Second, what in the actual heck is so special about a bikini body? I want a functional body, and I sure as hell can’t move the way I want to in a bikini. And seriously, if the shoe fits… freaking wear it! In my book, summer is about having freedom to do what you want (and wear what you want, but really that’s not the point of this blog), without the restriction of school or weather. BUT, to be able to do what you want during the summer, your body must be able to work properly and allow you to stay out all day and night, going hiking, road tripping to the beach with friends, and not spending the whole season stuck on the couch without the energy to walk to the farmer’s market. It honestly doesn’t take much to give your body the extra energy, and your mind the extra confidence it needs to do everything on your summer bucket list. Now, I am by no means an expert, but I know first hand what it’s like to feel like crap, and these are some ways I help my body feel better. So here’s to feeling good and making the most of the sunniest season of the year!
1.) Eat! Get your macros.
First things first: calories are your friend! When you’re sweating in the hot summer sun, your body is working much harder and using much more energy. Therefore, you must be providing extra energy for your body to use so you don’t crash halfway through the day. When you are active and moving, you do not need to be cutting calories! Just by being more active, you will already be at a calorie deficit, so make sure you are getting the calories you need to reach your goals and maintain your energy. Also, do not cut too much carbs or fat. These are essential nutrients to good health. These are our primary source of energy, and without them, you will not make the progress you want. Smoothies are a great way to cool off and get your nutrients when it's nice and warm out!
2.) Drink more water!
Again. Sweat. Really the one thing I dislike about summer. Guys, I have been admitted to the hospital on multiple occasions for extreme dehydration, and let me tell you, it’s not fun. Drink lots of water! Not only will it keep you hydrated, but it will also help your skin stay clear and help you digest those good calories.
3.) Forget the scale, Listen to your body
The only thing a scale will do for you is give you a number that will only discourage you. Rather than basing your health entirely on your weight or gains, try listening to your body. Pay attention to the way you feel when you eat certain foods. Pay attention to how it feels to pump your legs and swing your arms. The best thing about being in shape is the fact that you can do almost anything you want with your body! If a certain food or exercise makes you feel crumby and sore, don’t eat it! If a certain food or going for a relaxing walk makes you feel energized and happy, then do more of it! When you begin to focus on how you feel rather than how you look in a bikini, you’ll start to enjoy living a healthier lifestyle.
4.) Make your workouts fun
You do not need to go to the gym. I repeat, YOU DO NOT NEED TO GO TO THE GYM. Grab some friends and go for a walk. Head to the beach or the local pool and go for a swim. Don’t want to spend time outside? Invest in a nice yoga mat (or ya know, a nice, soft rug) and work out while enjoying your favorite movie or tv show. You know what tools you need to get healthy? Your body.
5.) Find alternative treats
My husband and I bought a bag of Swedish Fish last week (I’m talking a giant gallon size bag) and devoured every last one within a couple of days. It happens. Don’t beat yourself up. But rather than making that a habit, swap out candy for your favorite fruits! You can still indulge your sweet tooth without eating a bunch of artificial crap that will only give you a belly ache. There are few things I love more than packing up a couple apples and heading to the park on a nice summer day. Instead of grabbing a soda after spending a day in the sun, try juicing. Mix a couple fruits and veggies together for a nice refreshing drink!
6.) Treat Yo Self
There are days where you’ll get so discouraged. You’ll feel like you’re not making the progress you want, you feel bloated, and you just cannot even think about eating another vegetable. This is when I do a little shopping and treat myself to something that will motivate me. Some days it’s a new sports bra (yup, this happened on Wednesday, shortly after finishing that bag of Swedish Fish), and other days it’s Halo Top ice cream (although, honestly, not a fan of the taste of artificial sweetener. Sorry erythritol). Do what you need to do to stay on track and motivate yourself to eat better and train harder.
Stay cool. Stay active. Enjoy your summer.