This odd weather in March may have thrown us for a loop, but spring and summer are just around the corner.  While we enthusiastically welcome the warmth, our summer bodies may not be quite ready for a close-up. Don’t throw a pity party just yet; we’ve compiled a list of 10 things to do to get summer ready.

Mentally Prepare

Getting started is half the battle, right? Jump start your summer bod goals by establishing a game plan. What do you want to accomplish? Maybe it is running a springtime race? Perhaps a vacation deadline? Or perhaps it’s that bathing suit you just fell in love with while mindlessly online shopping. Whatever it is, use that as an anchor to pull you towards your goal. There are downloadable apps that will help organize your intentions into action, and many find a smartwatch or fitness tracker help to fuel their healthy lifestyle fire.

Swap Coffee for Green Tea

Scientists believe that the antioxidants in green tea encourage your body to burn fat, improve muscle endurance, and reduce the risk of heart attack. Research also supports that drinking tea can help with UV protection; you know those little harmful rays that cause all kinds of problems, get in the habit of drinking tea now to up your protection game. Dehydration can leave you feeling high and dry and your skin looking as parched as you feel.  Tea has dual benefits: it hydrates AND caffeinates thus making it the perfect drinking to get you summer ready.

Photo by Cassie Boca on Unsplash

Make Small Changes to Your Diet

No one likes anything excessive and overbearing- a diet included. Make small gradual changes to your diet that you can live with.  Another benefit of starting now is that you can make a different small change each week and piggyback until you reach your goal. For example, week one cut out snacking after 7 pm.  Week two decrease the amount of processed food in your diet. Week three meal plan and pack your lunches. Everything comes back to setting that solid plan and sticking with it.

Treat Unsightly and Possibly Unhealthy Varicose & Spider Veins

When asked to name one thing about your body you wish you could change, what would it be? If you would say your varicose or spider veins, you are not alone. What you may not know is that these veins can be both unsightly and can also be indicators of underlying health issues.  Over 75 million Americans suffer from vein disease, but many write off their symptoms as a just cosmetic issue, or mistake their tired, heavy-feeling or painful legs for a sign of something else. 

What to do? There are two minimally invasive procedures, Endovenous Laser Treatment (EVLT) and Sclerotherapy offered by Charlotte Radiology Vein Centers. They are often done together and have a 95% success rate.  The treatment only lasts about an hour and brings little to no pain. Smaller spider veins take about 3-6 weeks to become lighter or disappear, while larger veins may take as long as 3 to 4 months when treated appropriately. There is no time like the present to treat these veins and get your summer bod off to a great start.

Do Something Active Every Day

Eventually, the seemingly endless winter will leave, the bright sun will start to shine, and we can get outside and seize the day.  Just feeling the sunshine on our skin has profound effects of on our mood. Add in simple activities to get your day off to the right start and take advantage of all the plusses the warm weather brings. Plan to get up 15 minutes earlier and take your dog for a walk. Or set aside 30 minutes before dinner to add in an evening jog.  Need to entertain your kids? Take them to a park and make up a workout while they play.  Get out and about with pop up yoga events, brewery runs, or join your favorite exercise studio.  Make sure one of your goals is to do something every day that gets your heart rate up and blood pumping.

Change Up Your Cocktail

Photo by Kelsey Chance on Unsplash

Alcohol can pack a lot of empty calories because drinks don’t provide any real nutritional value. Don’t blow your calorie intake on sugary/high carb drinks. Most drinks contain anywhere from 150-400 up calories- and that is just ONE. (And yes ladies, your coveted wine even has an average of 125 calories). Try something lighter like vodka and soda with a splash of lime weighing in at about 96 calories.

Tone the Parts That Have Been Hiding All Winter

Raise your hand if you strength train already? Ok, raise your hand now, if you are saying- “Lift weights? Me? I’m not trying to look like Arnold.”  Hold your protein shake ladies- weight lifting will not get you ripped, BUT it will leave you with some awesome benefits.  Strength training builds muscle; muscle mass burns more energy than fat thus speeding up your metabolism.  Therefore, you’ll burn more calories even when you are just hanging out watching Netflix. Strength training also has substantial benefits for our bones.  Osteoporosis is the weakening of your bones; strength training helps to combat this process by making our bones denser. By adding in weight training into our workouts, you will begin to see results more rapidly because of the lean muscle mass you gain.

Prep Your Locks

Your hair needs some loving too, after winter’s dry conditions. Schedule some much-needed touch-ups before the hot temps take over. Don’t let your hair weigh you down- get a good haircut, trim off the dead ends for a clean, fresh look.  Maybe you went dark over winter- now is the time to get that highlighting appointment in the books. Low commitment color and style work best in the summer. To achieve that effortless, beautiful style, invest in products geared to protecting against sun damage and keeping your hair healthy all summer long.

Exfoliate, Moisturize, and Protect

As your skin develops it naturally replaces old cells with new ones; when these old skin cells start to pile up, they leave the skin looking dull, rough and dry. Exfoliation lifts this outer layer and sloughs off the skin gently. You can DIY your own sugar scrub using a few simple, household ingredients: sugar, coconut oil, and essential oils.  Make the mixture about 75% sugar and 25% coconut oil, add a few drops of essential oil and, voila, your own sugar scrub.  Use about once a week to prevent irritating the skin. Gently massage all over your skin until and then rinse off in the shower with soap and water. Next, apply your favorite moisturizer to optimize your healthy glow. Your feet and heels need some TLC too, now is the perfect time to schedule a pedicure.

Get Scheduled to Remove Unwanted Hair

Hair removal can be tricky.  Shaving is the quickest method of hair removal.  However, it only removes surface hair, so it has to be updated often.  There is also the risk of irritation and ingrown hairs. Exfoliation after shaving can help to curb some of these effects. Waxing is the deep removal of hairs and can help stunt the growth of new hair. Another benefit is that your hair becomes lighter and thinner with each waxing. Plan early because you want to give your skin time to heal after you’ve had a wax. Experts recommend waiting at least 48 hours before harsh sun exposure.

Build Up Your Confidence

Photo by Julia Caesar on Unsplash

Being summer ready isn’t about being perfect, but instead loving yourself and making small changes that help boost your confidence. Your goals are your own, tailor them so that they fit into your unique plan.

Challenge yourself to find something you love about body each day. Limit your social media use to ward off constantly comparing yourself to others. Evaluate what makes you happy and rid yourself of things that don’t bring your joy. Love yourself.

Promise yourself these goals will go beyond bathing suit season, these are the changes that will make your life better. 



These summer beauty tips brought to you by Charlotte Radiology Vein Centers which offer the latest in minimally-invasive procedures for the treatment of varicose and spider veins, venous reflux and other medical conditions.

For more information or to schedule an appointment, call 704-367-7877.
Or, schedule a consultation online.

Curious to learn more about Endovenous Laser Treatment and Sclerotherapy vein treatments? Then check out this interview with local lifestyle advisor and stylist Catherine Horgan as she explains her story to finding a solution to unsightly and painful veins.

Local lifestyle advisor and stylist Catherine Horgan

 

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