How do you work out during the summer?
As motivated as I can be to exercise, the realist in me says, “it’s bloody hot and impossibly humid in south Florida for the next 4 months!” However, this challenge is not insurmountable- let me tell you some of my top tips for summer fitness in Florida:
Make it Happen
Don’t talk yourself out of it before you even get started: put your planned workout session on your calendar! The first thing I recommend when undergoing the effort to get fit is choosing an activity you enjoy.
Diversity in movement works for me but ultimately setting some sort of routine or discipline will set you up for success. Carve out a specific time to fire up your engine. After all, when you expend energy you gain energy. I’m a morning person, so I like to do my exercise early on in the day. On the other hand, I know people who do yoga after work to calm their minds and relax for the evening.
If you want to be outside, be aware of the temperature and sun exposure. 11am to 4pm is brutal for me unless I’m swimming. If you choose a park activity, look for shade or a pavilion to shield you from the elements. For more flexibility on timing, I find taking indoor fitness classes is a good option. If you want to go on an early morning jaunt, ask a friend to take a stroll on the sand to see a beach sunrise. This way, you are accountable and will be less likely to hit the snooze button or blow it off. The sense of accomplishment and camaraderie feels amazing.
Overcommitting Leads to Inaction
If you don’t love the idea of strenuous exercise, stretching is a pleasant activity with a myriad of health benefits. I used to watch my grandfather stretch every morning in his tiny New York apartment. He even drank green juice before it came in bottles. Fitness isn’t a must to survive, but it’s necessary in order to thrive. Progress takes place outside your comfort zone, but remember to not push yourself too hard. If you take on more than you can handle, it won’t be sustainable in the long run.
You don’t have to be a fitness guru, but it helps to find an outlet for your energy you will eventually enjoy. I didn’t think I’d like weight lifting but the feeling of strength doesn’t come from just the physical body, it also comes from your mind and your willpower.
Prefer a solo mission? Then download a workout app or attend an online class if you know you aren’t a fan of the gym. Music is a strong motivator, so get a great playlist and listen while you find your flow. Buy a yoga mat to have at home so you can move and stretch your muscles. Even if you aren’t going to work out hard, you’ll find that your body will thank you during the day.
Warm It Up
Don’t skip the crucial step of warming up before you get moving. Biking, weight training, dancing, pickleball, paddle boarding, and cardio activities require you to be primed pre-game. Focus on your breathing, because oxygen gives us abundant energy. Above all, listen to your body and take breaks if you need- pulling a muscle or pinching a nerve is no fun! You can start with easy activities like tai chi or mat pilates. These things get you moving and ready to start more strenuous activities if you haven’t exercised in a long time.
Dress for Success
Lightweight and light-colored clothing is best to keep you cool and let your body breathe when exercising outdoors. At Anthony’s, we offer clothes with moisture-wicking, UPF50+ fabrics to give optimal sun protection with cooling properties
Remember: as little as 20 minutes a day of movement can truly help your body, your health, and your mind. Let me know what your summer fitness plans are in the comments below. I hope you have a great summer!