Take Care of Yourself This Summer: Avoiding the Summer Slide

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Another San Antonio summer is upon us.  School is out, mosquitos are out and increasingly scorching temperatures tell us the sun is definitely out.  You know what shouldn’t be out?  Your commitment to your own self care.  School teachers often warn of ‘Summer Slide’ in children, the regression in learning and skills that happens when students are away from school for the summer months.  A similar slide often happens to adults in the summer, although instead of reading and mathematics skills fading, it’s the commitment to self care and betterment that suffers as the temperatures rise.

Here are 5 ways to be your best self this summer:

  1. Commit to be active. Shifting schedules, kids at home, vacation, out-of-town visitors and extreme heat can all derail our best laid fitness plans. Adopt an attitude of ‘I’ll do the best I can’ and approach each week with flexibility and creativity. If having your kid(s) at home during the summer limits your ability to go to yoga classes, try practicing on your own or with the help of YouTube yogis. If you can only carve out 15 minutes for some exercise, make those 15 minutes count with tabata workouts.   Take out-of-town visitors on a walking tour, giving you both exercise and social time.  Seek out local gyms and yoga studios in new towns when on vacation.  Some exercise, some yoga, some strength training are all better than none.  Challenge yourself to stay committed.  You are worth it.
  2. Stay hydrated. Water is essential to life year round. Drink a lot of it!  Keep an insulated cup with you at all times so that you are never far from a cool drink of water.
  3. Eat Like You Matter. Cooking motivation is often inversely proportional to the outdoor temperature.  The hotter it gets, the less appetizing a hot stove or oven becomes.  Still, you deserve well balanced and healthy meals.  Fight the urge to make meals out of easy-to-grab snack foods.  Find no-cook or low cook meals that are nourishing and replenishing.  Batch cooking is an efficient way to limit cooking times: grill 2-3 meals worth of vegetables, fish or meat at one time and enjoy a few days of no cooking!
  4. Seek Out What Makes You Smile. What is it that brings a true, effortless smile to your face?  Time with friends?  Working with your hands? A good book and a cup of tea?  Whatever it is that replenishes you and brings you joy, do more of that!
  5. Slow Down. Our brain, our body, our soul all need moments of quiet and stillness.  It is counter to our culture but so necessary.  Try meditation, yoga, quiet time in nature or simply starting each day by sitting quietly. 

 

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