Working Out is a Challenge. Summer Makes it Worse.

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It’s officially summer. That means the bikinis are on and your rolls are out. The BBQs are fired up and the meat temperatures are being bickered over. And the sun won’t let you forget that you didn’t want to work out in the first place (you can barely drag yourself off the couch to walk when its a balmy 70 degrees and overcast, let alone lace up your running shoes to venture out into satan’s armpit of 98 degree hell fire).

Summer is arguably the toughest time to maintain your healthy lifestyle (aside from the fruit cake capturing days of December). When you break a sweat walking to the bathroom, it can be difficult to maintain the positive fitness vibes that you cultivated during the spring. So what do you do? Try these 5 tips to stay motivated during the summer months:

Start early. Even with the fan blowing you’re probably too warm to get a good night’s sleep anyways. Beat the heat and wake up early to get in an outdoor workout before the sun dominates the landscape. You’ll feel better throughout the day and be glad to avoid the harmful rays.

Hydrate often. Drink plenty of cool water throughout the day. This will curb hunger, keep you hydrated as the sun depletes your nutrient supply, and reduce headaches associated with the heat. And don’t forget to hydrate any pets that you might drag along with you on your exercise excursions.

Class Pass. When meteorologists are frying eggs on the pavement to make a point, going outside is out of the question. Summer may be the perfect time to try indoor fitness classes and see what all the fuss is about. Look for temporary options like summer passes or month-to-month packages. And air conditioning? Oh yes.

Eat seasonally. We know that fresh is best, so eating seasonally is the best way to jazz up your summer dinners while keeping your waistline trim. Chances are you aren’t interested in a heavy meal anyways, so check out a seasonal food guide to see what’s freshest in your area.

Play. Remember when you were a kid and felt amazing after a day of swimming or running amok and eating popsicles outside with juice running down your arms? Tap into your childish sensibility and play at the beach, swim in a pool or start an outdoor game. You’ll burn more calories than you think and have a ball while you do it.

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