This summer, you may find yourself living in a new city or in your own apartment. Whether you’re traveling the world, completing a service project or interning for a company, living on your own comes with its perks as well as its challenges. Cooking for yourself can be daunting, and finding time to get in an hour of exercise each day can be overwhelming when you wake up at 7am, spend eight hours in the office, and are having trouble keeping your eyes open by the time 11pm rolls around. Slacking on your diet and fitness routine will only add to your stress. Here are five easy ways to minimize the stress in your already busy life to ensure that your health does not suffer during the summer months!
- Stock up on fruits and veggies
Start your grocery store shopping sprees in the produce section. Load your basket with salad ingredients, brightly colored fruits, and some fun snack ideas (veggie platters, fruit kabobs, etc.) I always keep a bunch of grapes in my fridge for those moments when I want something cold and sweet. Plums and peaches are fun summer fruits that are great for mid-morning snacks. Challenge yourself to try a new kind of vegetable every week. Throw some spears of asparagus on the grill, toss some Brussels sprouts with olive oil and roast them in the oven, or steam some sugar snap peas. You might be surprised by how much you like something you never would have otherwise tried!
- Water is your best friend
Buy a water filter to purify tap water. Fill it often, and stick it in the fridge. That way, when you walk to your fridge out of boredom, a super cold pitcher of water will always be waiting for you! Crystal Light packets can easily be added to your pitcher and come in a variety of flavors. You can also add some cucumber, lemon, lime, or orange slices to your pitcher for a hint of flavor.
- Find a gym
Ask your neighbors or coworkers where they like to workout before or after work or during lunch hour. Explore your neighborhood to see if there is a gym within walking distance. Your apartment complex may even have a gym in the building. If monthly memberships are too expensive or the gym in your building doesn’t have the equipment you need, head to Target and buy some hand weights, a yoga mat and a sweatband. Jog around your block before dark, Google some weight lifting and ab exercises, and always stretch before and after your workouts.
- Walk everywhere
Go with a friend before it gets dark. Explore your neighborhood to see if there is a grocery store, a farmers’ market, or a bank that is within walking distance of your building. The more you walk, the stronger your legs become, the more calories you burn, and the more you will learn about your surrounding area. Walking is one of the best ways to explore a new city or neighborhood while staying fit.
- Fill your days off with friends
Laughter is the best medicine for homesickness, and staying busy helps pass those long Sundays in a new city. Find a friend who wants to try boxing lessons or a Pilates studio. Find deals on Groupon, rally a group of friends, and enjoy being active while having fun in your new city this summer!