7 Ways to Get in Shape for Summer

It’s almost season for sandcastles, bathing suits and waves. If the thought of bathing suits makes you wish you were back in baggy sweater season, you’re not alone. If you are ready for summer in every way besides being psychically and mentally ready, here are seven ways to get in shape, for the sunniest season of the year.

1. 30 minutes IS enough
Recent studies have shown that just 30 minutes of exercise a day is just as effective as working out for an hour. In a study, men who exercised for 30 minutes a day lost 8 pounds in a three month period while those who exercised 60 minutes lost 6 pounds. Now that’s something to celebrate.

2. Skip the frozen cocktails
It’s hard to pass up strawberry daiquiri or a pina colada, but saying no to an extra 500 calories makes it a little easier. Skip the high-cal, high-sugar summer drinks by making your own with lighter juices and mixers. Extreme Berries or Acai Natural Energy Boost make excellent, fruity additions to any beverage. Add in some frozen fruit for a healthier summer treat.

3. Stock up on sunscreen
Keeping your skin in summer shape is just as important. According to the Skin Cancer Foundation, more than 3.5 million skin cancers diagnoses in over two million people are made each year. Make sure to use a sunscreen with an SPF of at least 30 with UVA/UVB broad spectrum protections. Studies have shown that any SPF about 30 only proves about 1 or 2 percent more protection, so a higher SPF doesn’t necessarily mean more protection.

4. Sub a salad
Salads can make a refreshing, yet filling meal. Grilling chicken? Add grilled chicken to a salad and skip the starchy sides. Or try something new. Edamame and watermelon are in season this summer, so why not try an edamame salad or the popular watermelon and feta on arugula?

5. Protect your peepers
With all that sunshine, it’s no wonder May is Vision Awareness Month. According to the American Optometric Association, the sun’s UV radiation can cause cataracts, benign growths on the eye’s surface, cancer of the eyelid and skin around the eyes. Protect your eyes this summer by always wearing sunglasses outdoors. You’ll also prevent wrinkles since you won’t be squinting to see.

6. Drink and splash in it
We mean water. Drinking lots of water won’t just keep you hydrated in the warm summer months, but drinking lots of water helps keep skin looking fresh and glowing. Water also has zero calories or sugar which makes it the perfect refreshment.

7. Don’t worry what others think
Everyone has flaws, but no one notices them except you! Be confident with your body and you will feel great. It takes practice, but it works! You’ll also feel better about yourself when you eat right and exercise.

1.Warner, Jennifer. (August 24th, 2012). 30 Minutes of Daily Exercise Enough to Shed Pounds. WebMd.com. Retrieved April 19th, 2013 from http://www.webmd.com/fitness-exercise/news/20120824/30-minutes-daily-exercise-shed-pounds
2. Fayed, Lisa. (November 8,2010). How to Choose the Best Sunscreen. About.com. Retrieved April 22nd, 2013 from http://cancer.about.com/od/skincancerprevention/a/choosesunscreen.htm

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by Madison