The arrival of Summer can mean days at the pool, family picnics, baseball and other outdoor activities. It is the perfect time to go outside and have fun. It's one of my favorite times of year because there are so many outdoor activities to choose from. Everything is more fun outside, whether you're swimming, running or cycling. Summer really is the best time ever! It seems like when the temperatures rise so do the number of our social engagements. Whether it’s frequent weekend trips, more happy hours with friends, dating, weddings, or just spending the majority of the time outside – our good intentions for staying healthy can be tested by all the events we are attending.
Mental health and physical health are largely connected, so by taking care of your body, you’re also taking care of your mind. Here are my best tips on how to have fun, treat yourself but also continue to look and feel your best this summer.
1. Stay Active
Summer can be a great time for people to engage in more physical activity and improve their fitness. Most of us know that physical activity can promote and improve our mental health, prevent or fight obesity, enhance fitness, and improve our sleep quality. I understand that added heat (even if it’s dry heat!) can make exercise uncomfortable in the summer months.
*Pro tip: Scheduling time to workout in the summer can be tricky. But the longer you leave it in the day, the less likely it is to happen. So set your alarm a bit earlier and get your workout done first thing in the morning. It will rev up your metabolism for the rest of the day, get those happy endorphins flowing and set the tone for an awesome day ahead.
If you’re the kind who doesn’t eat much after working out, consider making an exception for summer. Instead of focusing on what power foods to eat and how to stick to a diet, it might be more helpful to focus on how you’re snacking instead. I personally prefer Apples, Pears, Bananas and Peaches because they are quick and easy to consume. Berries are not only highly nutritious but also a low-carb fruit choice. Replenish your electrolyte reserves by drinking sports drinks (like Hydra-Guard) throughout your workout. Eat a high-fiber snack after your exercise to replenish your sugar and salt levels.
Barbecue season does not have to mean burgers, ribs and hot dogs. Grilling veggies gives them so much flavor and can help you fill up your plate with goodness. You can throw vegetables directly onto the grill or into a grilling basket. My grilled veggies of choice are red pepper, zucchini, tomato, red onion and portobello mushroom! Grill em' up, toss them in a bit of olive oil and balsamic vinegar, season with sea salt and black pepper and prepare for some serious deliciousness.
4. Hydrate Properly!
Our body also needs fluids and electrolytes to function at its best. Training in the heat means that you’ll sweat more and lose more water which means that you’ll need to drink more fluids to replace the liquid and electrolytes lost. Experts agree on one thing when it comes to how much water adults should drink: that Americans don’t drink enough. Here is one basic rule of thumb: Drink half your weight in ounces daily (ex: a 150lb person would drink 75oz).
For intense workouts or long-distance runs, drink fluids with added electrolytes. Bring a bottle with you to the gym, and make sure you drink before, during, and after your workout! Walking around with a water bottle or sports drink bottle has become part of who I am. Staying hydrated not only helps me to stay on top of my physical performance, but also I make sure I am always at my best mentally. Products like Hydra-Guard Sports Drink also help me to make sure I have my proper amount of Vitamins and essential electrolytes. One bottle has 20% the equivalent Daily Value of Calcium we need alongside with only 5g of REAL Sugar and no artificial anything.
5. Be Happy
Try to enjoy all the beauty summer has to offer and don't stress. Health is a journey and it is all about finding a balance that is right for you. No one is asking you to be perfect and what fun is perfect anyway? Just do what you can, with what you've got, wherever you are and be happy doing it. If you are feeling down or overwhelmed, shift your mindset. So many times we look at eating healthy as a chore and this can be so harmful to our mental health. Celebrate your healthy habits instead of looking at them as an obligation. Take it one day at a time and take time to remind yourself that you are making decisions that will move you closer to where you want to be. Summer is short and life is good. Soak it up!
We should always remember that vitamin and minerals — particularly A, C and E, as well as zinc — play an important role in keeping the immune system strong and staying healthy during summertime. Filling each plate with produce, lean meats, dairy and healthy fats, will help us to get what we need to help keep our immune system strong.
One of my favorite parts of the whole process is to search and get to know more about products that fit into my fit lifestyle and are on the same page as me in terms of longevity in what I do. I might be a professional swimmer now and somehow be ‘forced’ into watching my diet and what goes into my body, but I know for a fact that one day when I don’t swim anymore I will still be very worried and concerned about my health.
Luckily the availability for low-sugar natural products has been on the rise and I have been able to refuel and replenish my body with the right amount of calories, vitamins and electrolytes while staying on track of my lifestyle goals. Products such as Hydra Guard Sports Drink are available on the market and online and they help me on a daily basis with my training routine.
Paul Millsap, 4x NBA All-Star and Hydra-Guard Partner has always made his nutrition and health a priority, which reflects his elite performance and extremely successful career in the NBA. Paul’s ability to maintain playing at the highest level has been nothing short of amazing. It's a professional career that every athlete strives for.
The key for longevity in any athlete’s career is to take care of their bodies first and that's something that Paul has obviously done very well. Hydra-Guard Sports Drink caught Paul’s attention in early 2019, when he officially partnered with them in efforts to bring the brands healthy benefits more readily available to more households across the country."Being a professional athlete naturally encourages me and my family to live a healthy lifestyle. Hydra-Guard Sports Drink raises the bar to unprecedented heights with its beverage innovation. It’s packed with electrolytes, and being an all natural sports drink with low sugars is a game changer, this product is changing the industry," says Paul.