Monday, December 18, 2017

Summer Goal Checklist

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by Michelle Sutton-Kerchner

With summer’s midpoint approaching, where are you with your seasonal aspirations …

  • Have You Changed Your Fitness Program?

The timing of seasonal shifts is the perfect reminder to change up your workout.  Schedule your free fitness re-evaluation with a trainer and assessment with the Center nurse. Note your progress and any areas in need of improvement. Then, use that information to create a new workout. Customize it according to evolving fitness goals.

Perhaps your current focus is on endurance as you prep for a fall racing event. Or, maybe you are still trying to sculpt your beach body. A fresh workout sparks momentum and helps assure consistent progress. Muscles and mind remain engaged and your fitness program stays effective.

  • Are You Active Every Day?

Aside from your formal fitness program, be sure you get enough daily physical activity. Without the blanket-and-couch weather of winter, summer’s brighter, longer days often help you get moving. It is easier to putter around in the world this time of year. Take advantage! Go for a walk or bike ride. Extend your spring cleaning. Cultivate a garden. Stretch daily. Get moving!

Get out and be active.
Get out and be active.

We all know workouts are excellent for mental and physical health. Fill your time beyond them with movement as well. Do not diminish the benefits of your Center time by being sedentary the rest of your day.

  • Do You Drink Enough Water?

Summer days can leave you sweating even as you recline in the shade. Replenish to avoid dehydration. By the time the body signals thirst, you already have started to dehydrate. Thirst also may be mistaken for hunger. Keep track of how much water you drink to avoid heat illnesses. You’ll also feel better when properly hydrated, with more energy, less cramps, and decreased headaches.

  • Did You Discover a New Fruit or Vegetable?

If you have yet to try something new at the farm stand (or even visit the farm stand), it’s time. Fresh produce picked locally at its peak is often its most delicious form. Think of the taste difference between a local tomato and its hothouse version. While at its best, now is the time to experiment with in-season produce unfamiliar to you.

Experience new flavors of summer.
Experience new flavors of summer.

If you are a produce connoisseur and already enjoy the extensive summer bounty, try a new recipe. It may add a little time to dinner prep, but the sun still shines long into the evening.

  • Are You Spending Time Outside?

Without bitter temps and blankets of snow and ice, there is nothing to keep you inside. (Okay, maybe a 95-degree, humid day.) Otherwise, get outside. Breathe in the air and soak in some sun. Time spent among nature revives the body and soul. You don’t need to go on a hiking adventure or travel to the beach. Take in your neighborhood. Find a gazebo, a nearby park, or community garden. Experience the outdoors with all of your senses.

Be sure to take precautions. Always apply sunscreen and wear sunglasses. Also, prepare to sweat. Dress accordingly, with a water bottle as your must-have accessory. If you acknowledge you’ll be hot, it can be easier to bear. No one minds sweating as much when a cool shower or swim is in their near future.

  • Have You Made Time for Summer Favorites?
Make time for what maters most to you.
Make time for what matters most to you.

Make time for a fishing expedition or night around the backyard campfire. It’s the stuff of your summer dreams. The memories will warm your heart as you shovel away heaps of snow next winter. With half the summer left, what has stopped you so far? Prioritize now. Fit in what matters. Get that canoe in the water.

Image Credits

Swing with child:

Unique produce:

Sunset couple:

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