June is upon us and we are reminded that 2017 is halfway complete. It is amazing how quickly time flies. What is also amazing is how cool the weather has been in New York City. The calendar says June, but our continued use of light jackets and sweaters begs to differ! Rest assured that summer is coming.
In 2017, the summer solstice falls on Wednesday, June 21, at 12:24 am EDT. The summer solstice is the day with the most hours of sunlight during the whole year. While warmer weather tends to lighten our moods, there are certain things we need to remain vigilant about to ensure our continued emotional wellness.
The 3-E’s of the summer solstice are relatively easy to remember and with the extra boost from extended daylight hours, we can confidently begin to claim your success at the following:
Eat Well: Summertime in Brooklyn is like no other place in the world! Free concerts, block parties galore, bottomless brunches, Mr. Softee… eating well can quickly become a challenge. Foods that will take you out of your positive mental space quickly are those with refined carbohydrates, such as sugar. These sugars are found in junk foods, soda, fruit juice, and jams. They can make blood sugar levels fluctuate up and down like a roller-coaster and take your positive moods along for the ride! Do your best to limit your intake of these mood-snatchers and begin adding more proteins, fiber, and a daily multi-vitamin to your diet.
Eat Often: Contrary to popular belief, increasing the number of times you eat in a day does not have increase your waistline. Once you have ascertained which foods can be placed into your personal “eating well” category, you should begin eating these healthier foods in 3-hour intervals until you have reached a total daily intake of five meals. The consumption of smaller, healthier meals will speed up your metabolism and reduce food cravings that often lead to poor food choices.
Exercise: Exercise plays a vital role in improving our self-esteem, self-confidence, and overall moods. For most healthy adults, the Department of Health and Human Services recommends that we get at least 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity or 75 minutes of vigorous aerobic activity a week (or a combination of moderate and vigorous activity). You can determine if your activity is moderate or vigorous by the amount of effort you are exerting during the activity.
A portable heart rate monitor is a great tool to assist you in monitoring your effort and progress. Remember: as your fitness levels increase, what was once a vigorous effort will quickly begin to feel like a more moderate effort. Do not shortchange yourself by forgetting to increase the intensity of your efforts when necessary! Finally, make sure to incorporate strength training into your weekly routine by using weights or your own body for resistance.
If you are ready to seize the second half of 2017 but find it difficult to reach your goals, please visit www.BrooklynMFT.com and allow Brooklyn Marriage & Family Therapy, PLLC’s personal coaching, counseling, and psychotherapy services be your first step in a new direction. Don't wait another minute, contact us today!