Now that the summer is officially here, you owe it to yourself to enjoy a little seasonal excitement. Whether you are fit, balanced, happily pudgy or pushing yourself to achieve a major health goal, these next two months should include a few key elements of the summer before time quickly fades into Labor Day memories.
Water Water Water
This time of year is so perfect for water based activities, and even we urbanites have plenty of aqua options. Hit the beach or the pool and get all the way into the water. Water soothes, salt water helps rid the body of toxins, and moving around in water is exercise without feeling like exercise.
Hydration matters. It really does, and it doesn't have to be fancy. Your body is 60-70% water but that level can vacillate between 50% and 75% and many physiological effects happen at that dehydration end of the spectrum: low energy, hormonal imbalances, poor decision making, etc. A big glass of water in the am, coupled with a diet rich in fresh fruits and vegetables is almost completely sufficient in terms of hydration. Athletics notwithstanding.
Try New Activities
Mix it up! Your body and your brain learn from new and different activities! By trying new physical activities, your brain is stimulated and creates new physiological connections, which can positively impact the entire body. Tennis, soccer, badminton, even ping pong are fun ways to spend time with friends or family AND mitigate the effects of sedentary life.
Protect Your Skin but Get Some Sun
Don't spend the summer indoors! A couple of times a day, you should get outside, though most experts agree that between the hours of 11:00 am and 2:00 pm, the sun is particularly harsh. Invest in sunscreen and make outdoor time a daily ritual - our suggestion is a little in the am and a little after dinner. A NYTimes blog post from last year is a great resource for sunscreens, as they are definitely not all alike.
New York City is more than 3/4 of the way to planting a million trees as part of its environmental campaign from a few years ago. If you live in the city hopefully you've taken part in this program in some way, and hopefully this has encouraged you to grow something alive in your living environment. Regardless of where you are, however, these are excellent months to get something growing. And there's an added benefit: gardening is exercise! Taking care of your yard or even a little fire escape garden requires physical activity - it all makes a difference.