Summer is just around the corner, and the lure of beach days and holidays has prompted many of us to think about getting in shape. If you’re on a mission to get fit and boost your health, this guide has all the tips and tricks you need.
Simple ways to boost your health and fitness this summer
When it’s hot outside and the days are long, it’s natural to want to feel confident in your own skin and enjoy the holidays. Many of us make a concerted effort to try and shape up when summer is approaching, but what are the best ways to get stronger and healthier? Here are some simple ways to improve your fitness this summer.
Setting activity targets
One of the most effective ways to increase your activity levels and boost your fitness is to set daily or weekly targets. If you don’t already have an activity tracker or an app on your phone, it’s an excellent idea to start monitoring your activity levels. Experts recommend 150 minutes of moderate exercise per week. This can include everything from dancing, swimming and hiking to walking, playing tennis, dancing, doing team sports or taking up active hobbies, such as gardening or playing golf. Counting steps is a fantastic way to get into exercise and gradually increase your fitness. Use your tracker to see how many steps you do on an average day and then set yourself a target. If you’re starting at 3,000 steps per day, push for 5,000 and then see if you can work your way up to 7,000 and then 10,000.
Incorporating exercise into your daily routine
Many people automatically conjure up images of treadmills or weights when they hear the word exercise. The truth is that exercise comes in multiple forms, and there are myriad ways to get your body moving and build fitness and strength. Incorporating exercise into your daily routine is a brilliant way to increase your activity levels and supercharge your physical and mental health. From an early morning yoga session or a jog to a lunchtime stroll or an evening bike ride, making time for exercise will help you get in shape and benefit your body and mind.
If you find it challenging to find the time to work out or get out for a run, a hike, a bike ride or a training session, try to manage your schedule so that you have more time available. You could get up 30 minutes earlier, use your commute to exercise by jogging, cycling or walking to work or exercise after work. Home gym equipment is an excellent investment for people who are short on time, as working out at home gives you more flexibility. You can also follow online workouts or join virtual classes from your living room or home gym. It’s also an excellent idea to look for activities that provide an intense workout, for example, HIIT. You can burn calories fast, and you only need around 20-30 minutes to enjoy a rigorous, full-body workout.
Trying new activities
It’s common to lose motivation or get bored when you’re trying to get fit. Most of us are familiar with the scenario of setting resolutions at the start of the year and giving up a few weeks later. To maintain high levels of motivation and make a positive difference to your health, try new activities. Doing the same thing day in, day out can make working out dull, and you may lose enthusiasm. There are endless ways to get fit, and you can be creative when planning workouts. Go swimming, learn to dive or dance, hit the beach, go surfing or water skiing, play golf, soccer or rugby, or get out into the great outdoors and go hiking, kayaking, or mountain biking as long as your body is moving and your heart rate increases significantly, you should find that you reap the rewards of a more active lifestyle.
Exploring new environments and settings
Summer is the perfect time of year to train outdoors and enjoy a range of different settings and environments. When the evenings are warm and light, and the sun shines most days, there are glorious opportunities to try out adventure sports and outdoor activities and get out of the house or the gym and enjoy the open air.
Getting friends and family involved
Exercise is excellent for your mind and body. Still, it’s also a brilliant way to socialise, spend quality time with friends and family and meet new people. If you’re on a mission to get healthy this summer, encourage your friends, relatives and colleagues to get on board. You can spend your weekends or evenings going for walks or bike rides, join group classes or sessions together, or sign up for a charity challenge, such as a 5K run or an obstacle course. You could join all kinds of classes, including Pilates, aqua aerobics, spinning, HIIT, circuit training, trampolining, street dance, and Zumba. If you all work out together, you can motivate each other and have loads of fun.
Working towards goals is an effective way to encourage progression and boost motivation. Try to establish goals, whether you’re new to exercise, or it’s been a while since you used your home gym or went to an exercise class. Your targets should be ambitious but realistic. Try to push yourself but understand that you might not see results overnight. If you’re not a runner, for example, it’s unrealistic to expect to be able to complete a marathon after a couple of months of training. Start small and build your fitness gradually.
Many of us look forward to summer, and it’s the perfect time of year to get in shape and make the most of the long, sun-drenched days. If you’d like to boost your health and fitness, or you want to feel more confident on the beach, take these simple tips on board. Increase your activity levels, set aside time for daily exercise, get out and about and enjoy the fresh air, try new activities and have fun with friends and family.