It’s summertime and for many, the living is easy. It’s also the perfect time to take advantage of balmy weather and bountiful harvests by making a few tweaks to your wellness regime.
Watermelon, Yes, Please!
Nothing says summer like a juicy watermelon. Its surging popularity goes beyond the fruit’s delicious taste, too. Scientists are touting the health and wellness benefits of this WebMD “fruit of the month,” especially its wealth of lycopene, an antioxidant that may help curb your risk for cancer and diabetes.
A watermelon frappe of watermelon chunks garnished with fresh mint can be whipped up in a blender in seconds. Or, splurge at one of the many summer SunMountain Center wellness retreats in Manitou Springs, Colorado. Each residential retreat includes a gourmet, organic breakfast that spotlights fresh seasonal fruits and vegetables, including watermelon.
Walking briskly for one mile, about 3.5 miles per hour, burns almost as many calories as running, according to fitness experts. And there is no time like summer to spice up your walking routine. Try adding stops at a favorite park bench or tree and spend three minutes doing jumping jacks or stepping on and off of a curb or low rock to rev up your glutes.
Research shows that afternoon between 3-7 p.m. is the best time to walk for building muscles and performance. Lung function is also best from 4-5 p.m. However, if you are slammed during the afternoon, any time is the best time!
Take Care of Your Tootsies
Taking the traditional walk a step farther, you might want to create a “Reflexology Foot Path,” designed to massage and stimulate acupressure points on the soles of the feet, which are connected to various energy meridians of the body.
You can create your own reflexology foot path by gathering soft and smooth river rocks (or cobblestones) and placing them in a path pattern to walk on and stimulate neurological reflex zones on the foot to create health and well-being. YouTube offers a number of tutorials on creating your own path, or you can enjoy the reflexology path in a gentle meandering stream at SunWaterSpa in Manitou Springs.
Shake Your Booty…and Belly
There is no better time than summer to get off of the couch and dance! In addition to the weight loss and exercise benefits of dancing, studies have shown that rhythmic movement is good for the memory, reduces stress and helps you make friends. From ballroom dancing, to hip hop and salsa, classes can be found at multiple places, from your local YMCA to dance studios.
Not just for the adventurous, Middle Eastern inspired belly dancing is a fun way to burn 250 or so calories in an hour. Just pump up the music, grab a few bells and be swept up by the beauty of the rhythm. To truly embrace your inner goddess, on July 27 SunWaterSpa is offering Tribal Bellydance with Adriana Rincon: Tribal Bellydance: Embrace the Goddess.
With so many options to enhance your wellness regime in 2019, you just might wish for an endless summer.