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Prepare Yourself for a Healthy Southern Summer With These Tips

It’s almost summer, and the heat is already on here in the South. With days close to 95 degrees in some areas already, you’re in for a real treat when July and August hit. While most people still want to know how to get their beach body looking perfect, there is so much more to summer than looking chiseled in a bikini or board shorts. Having a healthy summer is more important than just fitness. There are plenty of ways to focus on your health and wellbeing, and here are some tips to help you do it.

Plan an Adventure

Buffalo River photo courtesy of Discover Arkansas

Getting out and seeing new things is the best part about having a little extra time off from work. Most people plan their vacation time for the summer so they can maximize their activities. Whether you’re looking to explore some trails and caves, you want to hike to a waterfall or you’d prefer to explore a big city and find a pool to swim in, there are plenty of vacation ideas out there. Find something new to do in Key West, experience the great outdoors in Arkansas or explore Savannah, Georgia.

Get Enough Sun, But Not Too Much

The great thing about summer is that it’s hot, and the sun shines a lot. You need some of that sun, but in this case, there is too much of a good thing. Get outside for 15-20 minutes a day without sunscreen to get in your vitamin D production. Then you’ll need to spend some time inside and put on some good sunscreen with SPF 30 to keep your skin safe from the harsher sun rays. When you need to go outside during the high sun hours from around 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., make sure you cover up, wear a hat and keep your skin safe.

Do Some Routine Health Maintenance

Summer is a good time to go in for those health checks. Do your annual physical, get your hormone levels checked and take a testosterone test, especially if you’ve been feeling more tired than usual. Low testosterone is associated with mood swings, low energy and even brain fog and memory loss. These routine health maintenance checks can go a long way toward helping you feel your best all summer long. If you have any abnormalities, you can easily get on supplements and medications to improve your health so you can enjoy your summer and fall without a care in the world.

Take Daily Morning Walks

It gets hot in the South, and the humidity is a whole other issue on top of that. Taking daily morning walks is the perfect way to get out and move without ending up with heatstroke. Enjoy the cooler morning air, the sounds of the birds waking up and even the sunrise if you’re up that early. You’ll be glad you got in a brisk walk before the intense heat takes over. Walking daily improves your circulation, gives you more energy and even helps strengthen your bones. All of these things are important if you want to have a healthy summer.

Find Days to Sleep In

Sleep is healing. Sleep is regenerative. Remember how well you sleep after a long day at the beach? Those are the kinds of days where you want to plan to sleep in. Sleep can help your body reset and get the rest it needs to feel energized and fabulous all summer long. Get some blackout curtains, wear an eye mask and give yourself the best sleep of your life. Your health will thrive when you get all the rest you need.

Play in the Water

Playing has amazing benefits for your mental and physical health. Being in the fresh air, sunshine and enjoying a cool dip in a safe water source is amazing. Watch out for those gators, though; you want to make sure you don’t accidentally go play in infested waters. Playing in the water improves your stamina, helps you learn to have fun and can give you boosts of happy hormones. Playing in the water can look like jumping off diving boards, going down water slides playing a game of volleyball and so much more.

Eat Fresh Summer Fruits and Vegetables

Farmer’s markets are at their best during the summer. Go in the early morning to avoid the heat of the day and to get the best selection. You’ll find tomatoes, berries, peppers, onions, herbs and much more. Watermelons, cantaloupes and other melons come later in the year and are best cut fresh and eaten as soon as possible. The delightful flavors of summer from local farms help you focus on healthy eating in a way that’s fun, engaging and social. Finding good produce from local co-ops can also help you work on improving your health this summer.

Slow Down and Focus on Your Mental Health

Summer can feel like a whirlwind if you’re running from activity to activity. Slow down for a minute and focus on doing things that will improve your mental health. Whether you need a little counseling from a professional therapist or you simply need to simplify your life, summer is a good time to focus on these things.

Find rest in doing things you enjoy. It might be perfecting your flower garden, finding a great book to read on a hot summer day or even taking time to enjoy your personal hobbies. Your mental health matters, so take this summer to focus on improving it in whatever ways you need.

Summer is a great time for a break. Find time to focus on your health by getting medical checks, improving your sleep and enjoying delicious fresh produce straight from the farm.

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