It's sunny and gorgeous, gardens and grocery stores are bursting with fresh fruits and veggies, you're spending lots of time outside, but you seem to be putting on weight. What gives? If pounds are piling on this Summer, here are nine reasons why.
- Ugh, it's too hot to run: Heat and humidity are brutal, so if you can't summon the get-up-and-go to exercise outside, that's what air-conditioned gyms and swimming pools are for.
- You could really go for a cold one right about now: Whether it's an ice-cold beer, lemonade, or margarita, all those chilly drinks are full of calories. Keep these drinks to a minimum and drink ice water or seltzer whenever you're parched.
- Another barbecue? Sure: If you're invited to a barbecue every weekend, it's tough to say no to all those yummy grilled foods. To save calories, go easy on the beer, chips and dip, potato salad, and ribs. Instead, load up your plate with fresh or roasted veggies and a vegetarian or turkey burger without the cheese and bun.
- I scream, you scream, we all scream for . . . : If you have fond childhood memories of the ice cream truck, that catchy little jingle makes your mouth water thinking about Chocolate Eclairs, Orange Creamsicles, and Giant King Cones. If you can't resist running after the ice cream truck or hitting the local ice cream parlor after dinner, choose lower-calorie treats like fruit bars or sorbet.
- Outdoor seating at restaurants call to you: Eating outside on an adorable patio with the Summer breeze and twinkling candles is fun and romantic, but if you're eating out more, you're most likely also consuming more calories. To keep tabs on your calorie intake, stick to eating out once a week and cook the rest of your healthy meals at home.
- It's sacrilegious to go to a carnival or ball game and pass on the Summer treats: Cotton candy, candy apples, funnel cake, corn dogs, hot dogs, sausage sandwiches, soft pretzels, curly fries — you just gained a pound thinking about all that. Make a rule to enjoy one treat per outing, or better yet, share it with someone else.
- Busy Summer schedules: Even if you're on the go from the beach to barbecues, with a little bit of planning, you can still fit in a quick workout and enjoy some healthy meals and 150-calorie snacks like these.
- It's 9 p.m. and it's still light out!: Longer days mean staying up, which can often lead to late-night snacking. Instead of grabbing cookies or chips, leave containers of cut-up fruit or nonfat Greek yogurt in the fridge that you can nosh on.
- Hey, you're on vacation: When you're living the good life on some exotic beach, you should definitely live it up a little. Just don't go overboard on the cocktails and all-you-can-eat buffets. Keep things balanced by finding fun ways to stay active such as taking a bike tour of the city, snorkeling, or doing a yoga class at the spa.