When you think about summer, it’s a safe bet the first thing that comes into your head isn’t ‘health’. But there are so many ways we can enjoy our summer while feeling healthy and fit.
Here are some simple ways to feel like a well-oiled machine this summer:
Fire up the barbecue
Fill up the gas bottle and get out your favourite apron and tongs! Barbecues are an easy way to socialise, show off your barbecuing finesse, feed the masses, and it can also be really healthy. Obviously barbecue meat can be fairly high in saturated fat, but if you balance it out with lots of nice salads, then you can have a well-balanced meal and still get in your greens. Plus, nothing beats the smell of a barbie on a warm summer’s evening.
Have fewer bevvies
This doesn’t mean you have to be a teetotaller all summer, it just means reining in your drinking so it’s not the focal point of your summer. For example, take a 6-pack instead of a 12-pack to a social gathering. When you are drinking, have a glass of water between each of your alcoholic drinks. That way you’re staying hydrated and reducing the overall amount that you’re drinking. You can also choose cleaner options, either zero sugar and/or zero carbs – there are plenty out there now!
Stack some z’s
The holidays are a great time to catch up on sleep! During the year, we often get busy and sleep-deprived. With most of us having time off, it’s a great chance to get more sleep. If you don’t enjoy early nights or sleep-ins, it can be a matter of just taking it slow and having more rest. Even if you’re an active relaxer, you could go for a gentle walk, read a book, or relax in the sun.
Seeing friends and family is a great way to ‘fill your cup’ and boost your happiness levels. Your mental health is just as important as your physical health. Reach out to people you may have been too busy to see throughout the year and make an effort to touch base. It’s as simple as meeting for coffee or a meal.
Slow down on the Christmas calories
As we all know, Christmas Day is a time for family and food, and some more food. Enjoy yourself – eat that Christmas pudding! But it is important to remember that Christmas is in fact one day and not three months. It is easy to let heavy eating spiral on for months and months until well after the Christmas period is over. On Christmas Day, I often choose my one big meal and then eat my other two meals as normal. Let’s face it, everybody loves food. Food, glorious food. But try to eat as many ‘normal’ meals as you can and not have too many triflefor- breakfast scenarios.
Reflect on your year
I know this might sound a bit airy-fairy, but it is important that when we get a chance to slow down and smell the roses, that we take the time to reflect on the year. Looking at what you have achieved over the year can really boost your sense of satisfaction and accomplishment. Reflecting on good memories can boost your mood and help you to look forward to the year ahead. It’s also important to look at the aspects of your life that may not have gone so well or not 100% to plan. Acknowledging what you would like to improve on and focus on in the coming year is a great way to recentre and set goals for your future self. Keep it positive; it’s not about being critical of yourself. For example, I had originally planned to do an Ironman event this year. Thanks to old mate Covid-19, this was not possible, so I am already brainstorming new events that I would like to tackle in 2021. Be positive and motivating.