Guest Blogger — Ashley Robinson
I have been cranking my AC since mid-May, shorts are the current staple of my wardrobe, and my freckles have multiplied to an ungodly population. Summer made an early trip to New England—and although the weather is known to get moody on us, it looks like it’s here to stay. The annual switch to summer styles and beachwear can remind us to eat well and exercise—but more important, a healthy lifestyle looks good and feels good in every season. Thus, I have explored a year-round solution to stay motivated, healthy and happy.
That’s right, ladies. Find a partner, and get ready to sweat! No worries if you’re single; this date doesn’t have to be romantic. But it should have the qualities of an ideal date: a supportive relationship; a fun, refreshing atmosphere; and the feeling afterward that you had a great time and can’t wait for what’s next. So grab a friend, a family member or a significant other. Just be sure—as when embarking on any long-term relationship—that the two of you get along well and will stay committed.
Once you’ve found your partner, consult your schedules. Figure out a time two or three days a week that you are both free, and stick to that schedule! If you are consistent about it, you will feel the long-term effects—in the quality of both your relationship and your health. When you exercise regularly with another person, the plans are on your calendar—typically making it easier to stay committed than if you were on your own. During the workout you can encourage each other to keep going and, afterward, you can share a sense of accomplishment and growth.
Whether your workout date is romantic or platonic, there are positive effects beyond building a relationship and building up your strength. It can also cut down on expenditures. When I want to see a friend, I sometimes spend more money than I should going out to eat, taking in a movie and enjoying other recreational activities. But going for walks or runs, bike riding or using a workout DVD at homeonly require one-time purchases that keep on giving. Spending more on a class or a gym membership can be cool, too—but there are easy and fun options even if you’re on a tight budget.
One last tip for your workouts: Date around! Follow an exercise DVD with your significant other or family member at home, and try kick-boxing or Zumba with a friend on your off days. Different people you know have different strengths, interests and schedules, so you can benefit from exercising with a mix of people. At the end of the day, all parties involved will be happier and healthier—through summer and every season.
Ashley Robinson studies English at Stonehill College. Her work in writing, dancing and designing reflects a passion for academics and creativity.