Are you always dreaming of reaching your summer body? You’ve probably thought about it at some point, especially since a lot of people you see on social media are always going on about it too. Talk of summer bodies is everywhere, so it can be hard not to get sucked in and feel under pressure when the nights start to get lighter and the days begin to get warmer.
However, aiming for a summer body can actually be super detrimental to your health. Why? Well, first off, it encourages habits that are not sustainable. People often take to routines that they won’t keep up in the long run, simply to look good for one event or vacation. They might eat much less than they should be, exercise more than their bodies can keep up with, and take a number of drastic measures to reach their goals. It also implies that taking care of your body should end once summer is over. There are many negative connotations with this term!
Here, we’re going to help you figure out what to do instead of aiming for that ‘summer body’. You’ll likely feel much better!
Aim To Take Care Of Your Body Year Round
First of all, aiming to take care of your body year round rather than just in the run up to summer is a good idea. You should care for yourself enough that you see how important this is. Caring for your body means staying active, eating nutrient dense food, and doing so in a way that you enjoy. Doing it the unhealthy way and hating it is a waste of your precious time and will not get you long term results. What’s the point at all if you’re only going to be miserable because you’re so hungry during the summer period?
Aiming to take care of your body year round will take the pressure off you and you’ll feel confident whatever the weather, literally.
Make Small, Sustainable Changes When You Feel Ready To
If you do feel like you want to make a few small changes in the run up to summer, there are ways you can do this healthily. Make a few snack swaps, so instead of having a bag of regular crisps, for example, you eat pea snacks instead. Maybe consider adding in 15 minutes on the stairmaster 3 times a week, or adding in one more weightlifting session. You should not be burning yourself out mentally and physically in order to reach your goals. Small, sustainable changes are the way forward and will not mess with your mental health.
Don’t Compare Yourself To Somebody Else
The worst thing you can do is compare yourself to somebody else. Remember, you only see a picture online, not the full story. If you’re following Instagrammers who work out, remember that a lot of it is angles, photoshop, and sneaky uploads from the year before even. You never know the full story, and comparing yourself isn’t a good idea even if you did. You are uniquely you, so embrace that!
Go For Balance Over Everything Else
Above all else, you should be aiming for a balanced lifestyle. It can be tough to fit everything into your life that is important to you, but it’s important. Fitness shouldn’t take over your entire life unless you’re planning on being an Olympic athlete. Make sure you still do things you enjoy, such as eating out with friends and family, and skipping the gym to catch up on reading if you want to. Many people on Instagram will tell you that you have to go to the gym even when you don’t feel like it or when things get hard, but it’s important to do what will make you most happy, too.
Look At Yourself As A Whole – Stop Focusing on Your Perceived Flaws
When people look at us, they often see us as a whole. When we look at ourselves, we tend to zone in on the things we don’t like about ourselves, being hypercritical. We are our own worst critics. Do your best to look at yourself as a whole rather than focusing on your flaws. By simply standing up straight, smiling, and wearing clothes you love, you’ll instantly look more confident and feel it too.
Focus On Self Love Regularly
Self love isn’t just eating nutrient dense food and working out. It’s taking a hot bath, applying your favourite moisturiser, putting on a face mask, making sure you’re getting 8 hours of sleep a night, and taking care of yourself in general. You know what’s in your best interests, so don’t neglect them.
Remember – You Won’t Be ‘Happy’ Once You Reach Your Goals
Lots of people want to wait until they have their summer body to start living their lives. They think as soon as they have their summer body they’ll wear the clothes they love, go the places they’ve been dying to visit, and just begin living in general. No! Life is happening right now before your eyes. You won’t automatically be ‘happy’ once you reach your goals. Many problems will remain – you might feel a little more confident, you might feel healthier, which is great, but your life won’t be transformed. Bear this in mind when you start feeling like reaching this goal is the be all and end all.
Don’t wait until a future date or event to do anything you want to do. Buy the Mizuno shoes now, wear that outfit you love now, go to a foreign country now. You’ll regret it if you don’t!
Hopefully, this post has opened your eyes a little as to why aiming for a summer body is unhealthy and what you can do instead. Don’t fall into the same trap as a lot of people or feel pressured. Take care of yourself out of self love, do it year round in a way that is balanced and sustainable for you, and enjoy it. You’ll feel so much better!