Editor’s note (7/13/20): With the COVID-19 pandemic, we recognize that our normal summer plans and routines look different now. However, we hope you can still find some nuggets of healthy inspiration in this post. Be smart and stay safe!

Heading into summer is exciting! These months are jam-packed with vacations, graduations and outdoor fun with friends and family. During this time, we all seem to “bend” on our normal routines because why not? It’s summer. The one area in your life that may be the hardest to keep in check is your health and wellness plan.

Changes in schedules, hot weather, child care and vacations are all barriers that keep us from sticking to our health and wellness plan. Try these five tips to make sure you’re setting aside time for your health this summer.

A group of people doing yoga in the parkMake a health and wellness plan for summer

When setting out to achieve any goal, you most likely make a plan first. You write it down. Instead of “winging it” this summer, sit down and make a health plan for yourself. You’re more likely to follow through with your exercise routine and wellness goals if you write it down. Make a calendar that offers a variety of workouts throughout the week to keep it fun and motivating.

Keep your workouts quick but effective

We’re more likely to stick to our goals if we feel a sense of accomplishment. Plan for focused workouts that last 25 to 30 minutes. Even on days when you don’t want to, remind yourself that working out shouldn’t be a punishment but rather a celebration that you’re able. Whether it’s walking around the neighborhood or playing in the backyard with your dog or kids — get up and move your body!

Rise and shine

We all dread the sound of the alarm clock, especially in the summer months when we’re supposed to be relaxing and recharging. However, if you get up and get moving, you’ll most likely be more active during the rest of your day. Along with that, you’ll consume fewer unnecessary calories because you won’t want to reverse the effort you already made that morning.

Include others

The summer months allow us to change up our workouts and spend more time outside enjoying the weather. Instead of hitting the gym, go for a family run. Hit the hiking trails. You could also include your colleagues at the office by setting up a monthly workout challenge group. Joining one another at the gym or yoga studio during lunch hour is a great way to stay accountable.

COVID-19 tip: If you’re meeting someone for a walk or a hike, remember to keep a safe distance (at least six feet) and wear a mask or face covering. When in doubt, work out together virtually by taking advantage of online classes through your local gym or YMCA.

Get your ZZZs

While the summer months are fun, we still need rest. Routines may vary greatly during this season but be sure to get seven to nine hours of sleep each night to feel well rested the next day. Another reason to get adequate sleep each night is for the mood boost. Your brain processes emotions during rest time. Less sleep can cause more negative emotions than positive.

Staying mindful of the importance of health and wellness is key. How do you encourage your employees and patients to stay healthy, especially during the summer months? Tell us more in the comments below.

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