Summing up your summer fitness regime
One of the biggest mistakes that fitness greenhorns make is to have a cookie cutter approach to their fitness plan, overlooking seasonal changes. As the temperature shoots up in summer, our body reacts very differently to the changing weather. We need to tweak our fitness plan to ensure that it is in sync with the season. Experts tell us how to tweak our diet and workout changes to achieve our fitness goals. While staying hydrated throughout the day is the key, following a proper routine and opting for lighter meal options will help you go a long way.
Start your day with two glasses of water this would help to flush out the toxins and water retention from the body. It will also keep you hydrated through the day. Having Nimbu Paani, aam panna, Coconut water, fresh iced tea, fruits infused water is a great way to stay hydrated. You can soak mint leaves in water overnight and have it in the morning. “In summers, the body is heated up, so we need fruits to cool the body. Fruits are usually low in calories than the food we eat and high on vitamins and minerals. Swap one meal a day - twice a week- with fruits, preferably swap with dinner as this will give deficit to the body in terms of calories while removing water retention. When you have fruits and avoid salts. Raw fruits have maximum nutrients. Muskmelon, watermelon, mango and sarda should be treated as one such meal. Never have fruits after a meal because the body will not use the nutrients from the food but will use the fruit nutrients and store the rest,” explains nutritionist Tripti Tandon.
Another important part of summer diet is reducing Caffeine. One should avoid coffee or any caffeinated drinks in the night time as it retains water in the body. “You should definitely reduce the amount of caffeine during summers because it is dehydrating in nature and your body is already dealing with excess sweating during summer-time. However, having caffeine in moderation, say a cup, won’t do any harm,” says nutritionist Nmami Agarwal.
Instead of heavy meals, try filling half of your plate with vegetables, “1/4th of it with complex carbohydrates like jowar, ragi, unpolished rice, or whole wheat, and the remaining 1/4th should be some high-quality protein, say in form of dal. Make buttermilk an accompaniment of your lunch-time meals to avoid fullness and bloating,” adds Agarwal.
During working out in Summer, one must balance the electrolyte in the body as well. “If you’re exercising outdoors, make sure you are well hydrated since you will be losing a lot of water via sweat. Drink through the workout to make sure you don’t cramp. If your level of intensity is a bit on the higher side and your workouts generally go over the hour mark, you may want to also supplement with an intra workout electrolyte or carb source to make sure your ph level and glucose levels don’t reach extreme levels. Have a gatorade if you are doing a high intensity workout, Glucon, EAA, are few supplements that can be taken to balance the body electrolyte levels. They should be consumed during the workout because they are fast digesting, so you won’t get into a fatigue state,” recommends fitness expert Avinash Mansukhani.
Consider changing your routine, rather than outdoor exercises opt for indoor ones if its too hot outside. You can go for a swim in the morning or evening. “Switch to weight training activities such as pilates, body weight yoga, TRX suspension training or cattle bell, all these will help tone your body. Try splitting your workout - go for cardio in the morning and weight training in the evening or vice versa - this will not dehydrate you can suck the moisture from the muscles,” explains fitness expert Kitty Kalra.
Having Nimbu Paani, aam panna, Coconut water, fresh iced tea, fruits infused water is a great way to stay hydrated. You can make detox water by adding cucumber, lemon and mint to a bottle. You can also make one with oranges and kafir lime leaves. Detox water with berries is also a good option.
Raw fruits are said to have more nutrients and less calories hence having them as a whole meal can be a healthy habit to adapt. Go for muskmelon, watermelon, mangoes and other seasonal fruits - try having them raw rather than in form on juices.
In the morning, your muscles are fresh and hydrated hence it is a good time to start working out. Many-a-times, as the day unfolds muscles become lethargic and the body is not hydrated well so experts recommend summer morning workouts. Interval training brings your heart rate up and then let it cool down, this is a great workout method for the summer season.
Foods to avoid
Avoid salt and caffeine drinks after dinner as they retain water in the body. Instead have herbal tea or milk before bedtime.
Expert recommends a cold shower post workout. They say it rejuvenates the muscles and is a part of cooling down.