Very often, before the summer holidays we ask ourselves, “What will I look like in my swim shorts?” and so the problem becomes one of getting into good shape, and staying in good shape during and after the vacation. Very often there is not much time left and so there is the temptation to try a last-minute miracle diet, something that could actually be very bad for us. It’s far better to avoid drastic measures but to stay in reasonable shape by means of an appropriate diet and regular exercise. When we are on holiday, the situation changes because we will probably not have the possibility of working out in the gym as usual, and our eating habits will also change, with the frequent aperitifs and evenings out that typically accompany holiday socializing.
Physical exercise is fundamental
Nowadays everyone is aware that to keep in good shape, it is important to maintain a healthy lifestyle, with a varied, balanced diet, accompanied by a moderate exercise regime, at least three times a week. These are the fundamentals, to be followed all year round, not just in the months before the summer holidays.
A few exercises
If you are accustomed to working out in the gym, and this is not possible for you while you are on holiday, you can continue to work out with some basic exercises. Remember to pack a pair of track shoes, and you can use them in the cooler hours of the day for a power-walk lasting about 40 minutes, which will burn off some calories. If you don’t have track shoes with you and you are at the seaside, you could simply swim for 40 minutes, an excellent method of keeping your heart and lungs in good shape in addition to avoiding the accumulation of fat. For good muscular form, squats are perfect for legs and glutes, push-ups are good for chest and arms, pull-ups for your torso. Don’t forget your abs, for which you can perform a series of 15 crunch exercises.
Healthy, balanced diet
Then there is the question of nutrition. First of all, drink lots of water, two litres a day, in small amounts, before you become thirsty. Five portions of fruit and vegetables per day: they contain vitamins and other organic substances that help regulate metabolism. We recommend eating fruit outside your main meals, so as a freshly-squeezed juice, a liquidized purée or an extractor juice at breakfast, more fruit mid-morning and mid-afternoon, and vegetables as sides at lunch or dinner. If you feel guilty about the amounts of bread and pasta that you eat, don’t worry. It’s not necessary to minimize carbohydrates in these forms to stay in shape, and, as stated by nutritionists, 60% of the carbohydrates that the body needs can be taken in as bread or pasta. In any case it is a good idea to alternate durum wheat bread and pasta with other forms made from kamut flour or spelt, which are more easily digested.
And when I am out at a restaurant?
If you have to go out often for lunch and dinner, try to avoid cured meats and fried foods. Choose raw seafood, or fish cooked as simply as possible, with grilled vegetables and lots of mixed salad. Prefer olive oil instead of butter in seasonings and sauces.
I want to keep my muscles in good shape
If your objective is to maintain muscle and keep your body fat as low as possible, you should privilege protein-rich foods, such as lean meats (chicken, turkey), fish, eggs, and lean dairy products such as cottage cheese and yoghurt.
Whether you are at home or on holiday, you can break the rules every so often. As long as it’s every so often, and not often!