How I Stay On Track (and Still Have Fun) During Summer

Hi, guys!

Now that Memorial Day is behind us and warm weather, summer vacation, and everything that goes along with these fun times is on our minds, I wanted to share some of the things I do to keep myself on track during the summer. I’m alllllll about having a good time and enjoying myself – but without going off the rails!

It’s so, so, so easy to get wrapped up in the summertime fun and related festivities, especially when it comes to eating, drinking, and being merry. It definitely happens to me as well as my nutrition clients, so I wanted to share some of the things I do myself and hear what you guys have to say. I’m far from perfect, and I know we can learn from one another, so feel free to leave a comment below about how you stay on track during the summer!

Be picky about when you decide to enjoy alcohol

It’s no secret that I love to enjoy a cocktail or two – and summer is FULL of opportunities to drink, but you don’t need to booze ALL the time. Alcohol is just empty calories. Stick to special events or just the weekends and skip the mid-week cocktails. A random Tuesday night? You probably don’t need that glass of wine. A Sunday Funday at the beach with friends? Sure, enjoy a couple of drinks!

Set a limit

Before you start boozing, set a limit of how many drinks you plan to have and then STICK to that number. No exceptions! If you still want to feel social, drink a “mocktail.” I’m a big fan of enjoying a flavored seltzer in a pretty glass with a slice of lemon or lime. Taking the time to make my usual seltzer “fancy” with a slice of fresh fruit or berries (chunks of watermelon are tasty, too) makes it seem like I’m participating in the “ritual” of enjoying a cocktail, but without the alcohol. Kombucha works the same way! 🙂

Load up on protein and veggies

There are so many opportunities to eat and drink during the summer, so make sure the majority of your meals, especially the ones at home (!!), are protein- and veggie-heavy to “free up” your carb and fat grams to give you a little cushion for your fun choices later in the day (like if you go to a party or barbecue later in the day). Making sure my diet is ON-POINT during the week also helps balances my splurges on the weekend.

Consider the “awesomeness” of your food choices

Chips and salsa or Doritos that you’ve had a zillion times versus birthday cake or your Grandma’s potato salad? Pick only the awesome choices and enjoy them!

Share the fun stuff

I love the Coffee Oreo ice cream from a local farm stand that we frequent during the summer, but the portions are pretty huge. Instead of denying myself a favorite summer treat, I share it with Mal. Typically, a small serving satisfies my craving, so splitting it and eating only half is the perfect solution.

Go grocery shopping on Friday night or early-morning on Saturday or Sunday

Having healthy food IN your house is more than half the battle, so make sure you make grocery shopping a priority at some point! Similarly, use a delivery service for the summer if you know getting to the grocery store will be tough.

KISS meal prep… keep it super simple meal prep!

No wants to spend hours in the kitchen cooking food, especially on the weekend when the weather is gorgeous outside. Fire up the grill, make a nutrient-packed smoothie, use meal starters/short cuts, like frozen veggies (<— lots of ideas for frozen veggies), pre-cooked rice/grains, burger patties, and kabobs, throw everything in a salad and call it a meal… do whatever you can to minimize the time you spend on meal prep!

Focus your meal prep on your most challenging macro

Ask yourself which macro do you have the hardest time hitting? I personally struggle with hitting my protein goals, so my prep day is almost always focused on cooking various forms of meat and fish as well as protein balls to set me up for a healthy week ahead.

Rack up your NEAT (non-exercise activity thermogenesis)

All of those steps really add up, so make it a point to walk and move more in my daily life. Even little things, like taking the stairs and parking in the spot farthest from the store, make a difference. And, hey, it’s summer, it’s time to get outside and play! Mal and I actually just started a “daily showdown” challenge on Fitbit to help us get our steps in each day. You can actually taunt each other through the app, so it’s obviously been ridiculous! 🙂 FYI: I have the Fitbit Versa, and I am lovvvving it. Review coming soon!

Give yourself a break from tracking macros every once in awhile

There are so many opportunities to have fun and eat delicious food in the summer – and you don’t want to miss any of those opportunities being glued to MyFitnessPal. For instance, track your macros during the week and then take a break on the weekends. Enjoy yourself – just be mindful of your choices. Then, get right back on track on Monday!

Question of the Day

What are you favorite tips for staying on track during the summer? 

P.S. If you haven’t heard already, the half-yearly sale at Nordstrom is happening right now. Check it out for the best selection and deals – up to 40% off!

14 Comments

  1. Going grocery shopping on a Friday Night or early morning over weekends is a great idea…
    I love to have cold drinks or juices during summer…But since it is too much unhealthy, I’ve switched to some healthier option like buttermilk..

  2. This is a great post. I typically gain more weight in the summer than I do in the winter because of all the ice cream stand that are open and it’s so beautiful out that we don’t want to be in the house to eat. I like your idea of drinking and only special occasions. I am trying this myself because alcohol is really just empty calories and sugar. Really packs on the wait. Thank you for the tips

  3. Thank you for this! I’m a personal trainer in New Orleans. With all of the fun summer activities in the summer I try to coach balance to my clients. This is so well said I’m going to pass it on.

  4. Love the “consider the awesomeness” idea. Also, not related to this post, but I really enjoy your Instagram videos. I’m not on Instagram, so it’s nice that I can watch them on your blog. They are the perfect length to listen to on my short commute

  5. Great tips! I love the idea of trying to stick to drinking only on weekends/special occasions. I have been trying to do the LaCroix in a fancy glass to help trick my brain into thinking I’m participating. A lot of it is habit for me; I like to have that glass of wine at night, but I probably don’t NEED it most days!

  6. I try my best to make my social activities really active: hikes, backpacking, walking or running with friends. It helps balance out the extra goodies because we earned them! Plus nothing tastes as good as salty chips and an ice cold beer after climbing a mountain 😀

  7. Great blog post! I try and follow alot of these tips – although sometimes I can’t resist an alcoholic beverage during the week after a long day at work – but I’m going to try the mocktails! I couldn’t agree more about keeping your diet on track during the week to balance out the weekend. And if I’m good all week and there are no treats over the weekend, double bonus of eating well and staying on track! (I have to remind myself that just because its the weekend and I ate well all week doesn’t mean I need to go crazy with my drink/food intake)

    I can’t think of a tip to add – you nailed it 🙂

  8. I looooveeee the Ice Cream Drumsticks. I mean, I could eat a box of 12 in 3 days. I do not buy them because of this.
    So one time a year when we go camping, I buy a four pack and have one every day or every other day. That is it. It is my splurge and I enjoy EVERY bite.
    Also, I up my water intake during the summer.

  9. I can totally relate to having a hard time staying on track during the summer. Warm sunny days make me want to sit on the deck and drink cocktails all day long. I also have a hard time working out indoors when it’s so nice out so in the summer I do a lot more outdoor running and walking.

  10. Thank you for these incredible tips. Iam struggling to keep my body in shape this summer and I will definitely try to focus on veggies and proteins when at home.

  11. Portion control is huge for me. I love food and went to eat all the good things, so I constantly need to remind myself that smaller portions help keep things under control. And drinking lots of water, especially between alcoholic beverages.

  12. Being super pregnant this summer is going to be a challenge!!! I hope to add in lots of swimming to help keep me on track! When I’m not pregnant I like to ditch the sugary drinks and use flavored soda water with lots of fresh fruits and herbs!!

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