Do you find it easier or harder to keep you and your family healthy in the summer months? Sometimes it’s harder to avoid all the frozen treats and to get out for a run in the heat, but there are so many other things that make summer a great time to start healthier habits. I’ve partnered with Blue Shield of California to share nine healthy habits we’ve focused on this summer…
1. Use the BBQ to eat more veggies. Instead of carbs at dinner, throw all the veggies on the grill. My neighbors can attest, we are huge users of the BBQ. During summer months, it’s fired up at least 4 times a week. There’s something that’s just so simple about throwing on a chicken breast with whatever veggies we can find in the fridge for a really easy, healthy, and delicious summer meal everyone loves that we can feel good about.
2. Cold fruit for dessert. I’m of the opinion that ice cold summer fruit like watermelon, peaches, and berries trump popsicles any day. At every summer meal I like to serve a bowl of ice cold fruit (with ice cubes!), and the kids love it as well. Sometimes summer fruit is messy, so we like to have picnics in our front yard whenever possible. Edie requests picnic dinners regularly.
3. Grilling fruit. Have you ever tried grilling peaches or pineapples? They’re delicious, especially with a little frozen vanilla yogurt. Another healthier alternative to most other desserts your family might crave.
4. Simple summer salads. With so many great produce at the farmer’s market during summer months, in addition to fruit at every meal I like to have a summer salad as well. This kale one and this strawberry pecan one are two of our favorites.
5. Skip the bath and put the sprinkler on instead. I’m always trying to find something for the kids to do during dinner prep to get their energy out and run those legs a bit before wind down time. A sprinkler on the porch does the trick! We skip the bath that night, and turn on the sprinkler instead! It’s so entertaining and refreshing for the kids and also gives the plants a nice drink as well.
6. Keep everyone outside as much as possible. Like our sprinkler routine, any chance to keep the kids outside gives them plenty of opportunity for some good exercise. Between chasing, hide-and-seek, bikes, scooters, climbing stairs, etc. they’re keeping those bodies healthy and strong.
7. Keep a small tube of sunblock in your purse. My kids have fair skin (especially Edie), so we have to be super careful about sunblock, even when we’re just going to the park. I hate finding myself without SPF so I’ve been trying to keep a small bottle in the car and in my purse at all times. This trick is also great for impromptu trips to meet friends at the beach!
8. Lots of family bike rides. Another favorite after-dinner activity is a family bike ride. Edie’s starting to ride her own bike, Henry’s a pro, and Dot is loving the infant seat these days. It feels so good (and great for us) to get everyone out on bikes in the evening before bed.
9. Keep an early bedtime. Lots of time outdoors means the little ones get exhausted earlier, so even though the structure is more relaxed in the summer, we try to keep an early bedtime which keeps everyone happy (and give Jared and me more time to hang out together in the evening!).
What healthy habits does your family have during summer months?