How to Stay Healthy and Happy This Summer

Caring For Yourself

By Amanda Murdock

As a certified yoga instructor and trainer at PURE Yoga, my clients often ask me for quick and easy tips to look better and balance their career, family, friends and fitness, especially during the summer. I too can appreciate a busy lifestyle filled with work commitments, parties, celebrations and summer vacations. Since staying focused and healthy in the mind, body and soul is essential, I highly recommend sticking to the basics – listed below since, at times, we all need a reminder.

1. Consistency is key. A regular wake up and bed time, scheduled workouts, planned meals out (with girlfriends or a date night), a meal plan (loosely planned so you are not grabbing the first thing you see when you get home from a long day), and at least a short period of meditation. And a meditation can be anything that allows your mind to quiet for a while – cleaning or reading can be just as effective as sitting quietly.

2. Eat breakfast. And no, coffee is not breakfast! Breakfast will help kick start your metabolism and curb the desire to overindulge at lunchtime. Adding protein into your breakfast, like Greek yogurt, low fat cottage cheese or cereals like Kashi can help you feel full longer. And of course, lots of water – if you’re not a water drinker, try adding a packet of Crystal Light for flavor.

3. Find time to do activities you enjoy. Like to dance, cook or volunteer? Then setting aside time to do those activities [for at least an hour a few times a week], alone or with friends, will help you keep a healthy outlook and perspective on life.

4. Stop “Stinkin’ Thinkin’.” Negative self-talk is very destructive to the mind, ego and self-esteem. Give yourself a break and, whenever you want to say something negative about yourself ask, “Would I say that to my best friend or my mother?” You would likely not say harmful things to them, so why say them to yourself?

5. Drop energy-zappers. Everyone has people or activities in their lives that deplete rather than fulfill them. Target that coworker who spills her entire life story to you everyday or that small favor that has turned into a chore, then consider limiting the time you spend or dropping it all together.

Amanda Murdock is a certified yoga instructor and trainer at PURE Yoga in New York and a member of the Yoga Program Committee for the Libby Ross Breast Cancer Foundation.

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