If swimsuit shopping has you stressed out, you are not alone. The thought of putting on a swimsuit makes many women want to hide in the nearest closest until the next season hits. Now, it should go without saying that embracing your body, where it is, and enjoying time with family and friends, regardless of how you look in a swimsuit, is priceless. Don’t miss out on those memories just because you don’t like how you look in a swimsuit. However, I am also a woman and know that feeling good about ourselves is also very important as is making health and fitness a priority.
Living a healthy lifestyle should be an all-year pursuit, but the pressure for a bikini-ready body is especially high during the warmer months. Whether it is a bikini, or just tank tops and shorts, summer does tend to expose our bodies more.
Even more, it certainly does not help our healthy lifestyle and fitness routines when we are on the go so much in the summer. Vacations, road trips and weekend getaways can take a toll on our health. Here are some fitness tips to help you stay on track this summer, whether you are at home, on the beach or camping.
Use Your Body Weight
Packing dumbbells into your suitcase is not always possible, but the good news is that you do not need dumbbells or gym machines to get a good workout. Using our body weight as resistance can be a simple, effective workout that can be done anywhere. Contrary to what you may think, you can do far more than just the traditional push-up which, by the way, is a terrific strength-building exercise. While this is certainly not an exhaustive list, some others include the mountain climber, burpees, plank, wall sit, lunge and squat. You can easily get a full body workout using your own body weight.
Squeeze in Some Cardio
Fit in some cardio wherever you are, even if only 5 to 10 minutes at a time. Take the steps instead of the elevator, do some jumping jacks throughout the day, or just walk at a faster pace. Find your way to squeeze in some mini cardio sessions. If you are at a hotel with a small gym, use it. Jumpstart your day with a quick 20 minute session on the elliptical before the day starts.
Drink More Water
Did you really thinking drinking water would not make it to the list? Of course not. Keeping our bodies hydrated is very important, especially during the summer when you are at risk for heat exhaustion. One tip during the busy summer months is to carry a refillable water bottle with you wherever you go. Often, our bodies mistake the need for water as being hungry, leading to weight gain and overeating. Dehydration can also lead to headaches and fatigue, neither of which will help your healthy summer routine.
Especially while traveling, grabbing a snack at the nearest gas station or picking up a burger at the nearest fast food restaurant is all that much more tempting. To overcome the “grab and go” mentality, prepare some healthy snacks and foods in advance and save yourself added calories. If you are flying, pack some healthy snacks like energy bars, bananas or nuts in your carry-on bag. If you are taking a road trip or enjoying the beach, for instance, you can also pack some low-fat cheese sticks or deli roll-ups in a cooler for some added protein.
Log Your Food Intake
It can be easy to underestimate how much we eat day-to-day, and even easier during the busy summer season. Tracking what you eat is a great way to stay focused and stay on track. While some find a handwritten food log more effective, many are now enjoying the benefits of food diary apps which make it easier to track their daily food intake anywhere and anytime. MyFitnessPal is one of my favorite apps to use, but there are many other options available. Find what works for you and stick with it.
Pack a Workout Video
Even with the many fitness apps available, I still enjoy my collection of workout videos. You can easily pack your favorite workout video for a quick, efficient workout wherever you are. Many workout videos are designed to give you an intense workout in a short time, which are perfect for the busy summer traveler.
Download a Fitness App
If a workout video is not your thing, there are many fitness apps available to be downloaded on your phone or tablet that offer an equally effective workout. It is like hiring a personal trainer to come with you anywhere. Sworkit and Skimble’s Workout Trainer are two of my favorite, but there are many more to choose from.
When the kids ask you to jump in the pool or swim in the ocean with them, do it. Swimming is a terrific cardio workout that works the entire body. Swim laps in the pool. Or, challenge yourself to see how long you can tread water without your feet touch the ground.
Walk at the Airport
There is no rule requiring you to sit at the boarding gate during layovers or airport delays. Many airports today resemble a local shopping mall. Instead of sitting and people watching, take a few laps around the airport. Listen to your favorite music on your phone, or browse the stores in the terminal. Do not use your luggage as an excuse. If you do not have anyone with you to keep an eye on it, you can actually use it to your advantage as tugging it along with you can burn some extra calories.
Pack Elastic Bands in your suitcase
Packing dumbbells in your suitcase may not be feasible, but you can pack some elastic bands (or tubing) which are lighter and take up only a small amount of space. Elastic bands provide many options for resistance training and toning, whether on-the-go or not.