Practical tips on how to stay active, eat well, and have fun in the Vermont sun.

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Who doesn’t want to enjoy a good summer? Let’s face it, we’ve worked out hard all week and know that there’s a BBQ coming up this Saturday.

Here are some tips to help you feel good, maintain and improve you health while having fun.

Tip #1
Drink water throughout the day

Water is important for everything from skin health to digestion and energy.

If you are out in the elements or active and losing water through sweat, you may need to get a little more. Add some berries, watermelon, fresh mint from the garden and even cucumbers to help get yourself some anti oxidants. The extra hydration will also help you feel better the next day if you decide to indulge in any adult beverages.

Tip #2
Plan activity into your summer indulgences and loosen up

Your body and mind want you to move and burn calories (and even get some strength work in). Try a class at your local gym or join the gym and learn some activities to help you get healthier, stronger and feeling good.

Games = good

If you decide to have a BBQ or are going to one, play some games like volley ball or water volley ball, swimming, or Frisbee. It’s important to warm up and loosen up the body before any activity or physical games (this time of year the “throwing arm” can get damaged pretty easily).

When stretching, keep it simple

Some simple movements like shoulder circles can loosen up the shoulders well. Begin with small circles and gradually make them bigger, then reverse the direction and repeat.

  • Give yourself a hug trying to reach your hand toward the opposite shoulders.
  • Throw in some high knee marches followed by heel-up marches.

This can all do wonders for injury prevention and  have much less discomfort on the joints and muscles in the days after.

Another great warm-up is a soft toss: Start close to a throwing partner and throw with a soft smooth motion stepping away from your partner every couple of throws will ease your body into the movements.

Tip #3
Eat sensibly, indulge wisely

Keep your food real. Start with your veggies and proteins.

‘Betcha can’t have just one

If you have foods and or drinks that you know you want to indulge in be aware of how much. If chips aren’t something that you care for but find yourself mindlessly eating while it’s in front of you then keep away from it.

If you are going to have a drink or two then have fruit for dessert or be aware of an appropriate portion. Try the burger with greens and without the bun. Breads and chips can often bloat us and make us crave more sugars and unhealthy processed foods.

Make a plan

We can find a great sense of accomplishment and avoid the guilt with a plan and being mindful enjoying certain indulgences that don’t blow our health progress. Good nutrition tastes good too. Find the things that are healthy and that you enjoy to help you feel good and that you can continue on your with your health goals.


These tips can help you maintain good health and have some fun with summer functions.

Bring it up to friends or family. Many people often have interest in making some small steps to being healthier. At the same time, many feel like they will be chastised about being too up tight if they are bringing up healthy tips or changes. Go out on a limb and suggest some fun activities or a healthy nutritional challenge—you may be surprised that you have quite a few takers!

Have a fun and healthy summer!

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Nate Yandow is a certified trainer, nutritionist, and the owner of Duke's Fitness Center.
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