Sum­mer is here and so many of us work hard to lose a few pounds before sum­mer vaca­tion but then get to our vaca­tions and ‘’want to live it up!’’ The prob­lem is that then we end up bloat­ed and unhap­py with those deci­sions.  Vaca­tion is sup­posed to be a time to relax and unwind and shouldn’t make you wor­ri­some or appre­hen­sive about your fit­ness goals.  Here are a few tips to stay on track with your goals while still being able to enjoy yourself:

Make a Plan

What are you look­ing for­ward to the most? Eat­ing at a cer­tain restau­rant? A cer­tain food in gen­er­al? Try to make good choic­es with your food and activ­i­ty all day so that you won’t feel guilty if you indulge in eat­ing your favorite burg­er. Allow your­self a splurge, enjoy it, but then move on and get back on track.

Drink Water

Drink­ing enough water may be the last thing you are think­ing about on vaca­tion but it is essen­tial for your health and to help you stay on track. Drink­ing water not only helps your body func­tion prop­er­ly but also helps you feel full before and dur­ing meals so you eat less.  Even the slight­est bit of dehy­dra­tion can cause you to believe you need food when, in real­i­ty, you just need some water.

In addi­tion, water is a great choice to sub­sti­tute for alco­hol.  Drink­ing water is also a good way to slow down the amount of alco­hol you’re drink­ing and helps you to avoid hang­overs or get­ting the ‘’munchies’’ lat­er that night and the next day.

Sched­ule in Movement

Make a com­mit­ment to sched­ule in dai­ly move­ment.  The goal isn’t to make strength improve­ments or lose weight but rather to stay con­sis­tent to keep momen­tum. If you enjoy walk­ing, jog­ging, or bik­ing, it’s time to take go into the great out­doors to enjoy your new sur­round­ings. You can also engage in new oppor­tu­ni­ties to move your body in ways that aren’t avail­able to you at home, like:  surf­ing, swim­ming, rock climb­ing and pad­dle boarding.

Don’t Skip Meals

Whether you’re rush­ing to tourist sites or head­ing to the beach for the day, it’s easy to lose track of time and skip a meal.  But, skip­ping a meal can eas­i­ly lead to overeat­ing at your next meal.  Keep­ing your hunger in check is key so pack a few nutri­tious, pro­tein packed snacks when­ev­er you head out.

Remem­ber Your Goals

When you are strug­gling to turn down that sec­ond serv­ing of dessert, remem­ber why you want­ed to get healthy in the first place.  Is it to feel con­fi­dent? Get your cho­les­terol num­bers down? To be able to run and play with your kids? Find some­thing that you find moti­vat­ing and remind your­self sev­er­al times a day.

Take a breath and enjoy life!

Go danc­ing, bik­ing, swim­ming or go hik­ing! Vaca­tion is the time to slow down and enjoy the lit­tle moments.  This time away is impor­tant to your well­be­ing and men­tal health.

Stay­ing on track on vaca­tion doesn’t have to mean per­fec­tion – it just means you have to strike a bal­ance. It is pos­si­ble to have a great time with­out sac­ri­fic­ing fun or sab­o­tag­ing all that hard work you put in before your trip.  Even with these tips, your diet progress may stall on vaca­tion (and that’s ok!).  As long as you’re not gain­ing weight, you’re still on track toward meet­ing your goals. Relax, enjoy your­self, and focus on mak­ing healthy choic­es when you can.