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My summer always seems to start out with big plans and dreams.

I imagine all the time i’ll have on my hands and how I might embrace a new hobby, or upping my exercise and trying something new. My summers then typically get away from me, or my entertaining, work, kids (the list goes on!) get in the way and I am back to square one.

For you it might be about (finally) losing some weight and getting into shape.

And, here we are, middle of the summer. How are those plans going?

I have vowed this year to have a summer free of regrets. To really capture the season, my increased energy from the sun and truly enjoy myself while still juggling the career, family and home trifecta.

I know for so many, myself included, there can be a bit of a nonchalant attitude about health, weight, and really even caring about it all right now. After all, summer is about vacation and leisure. Summer is about another excuse to get ice cream with your kids.

You can worry about it all in the fall when the weather gets cooler, right? Except for the fact that holidays are coming and…well, you know how that goes.

I know from many years of experience, that if you want to make shifts in our health, the time is now. Why wait?  Here are five ways I am planning to have a regret-free summer and feel great at the end of it all.

Make Cooking Simple and Easy

It is summer after all. I adore simple, “it’s too hot to do much” meals that embrace all the beautiful seasonal vegetables that are available to us right now (If you live in the US). What a great time to go vegetable heavy on dinners and eat lighter. How about a quick bowl using tomatoes, corn, black beans and cilantro? Or how about a summer stir fry? Better yet, grab some inspiration and recipes from my Bowl Method Guide. Ask me about it HERE.

Try A New Exercise

I decided to embrace water aerobics this summer. Yep, you heard that right. I have a pool at my house, which had been taken over by my kids and my swimming dog Buck for the last several years. It was high time I took back the power. If you think that pool exercise is only for the older set, think again. It is a great workout and you stay nice and cool, a win-win for me. So, what will you try this summer that is out of the box? Maybe a spin class? Or how about goat yoga, like I did this spring? The point is that it’s a great time to try something new and fun.

Limit Your Alcohol

Or better yet, why not embrace something like #dryjuly? I know, you might wonder how on earth you can get through summer without it, but the nutritionist in me wants to remind you of the wasted calories, headaches and health consequences of too much alcohol. Mix up a fun mocktail and embrace friends, family and relaxing in a new way.

Cut Out Sugar

Making s’mores over a campfire, popsicles, walks to the ice cream store trips, a cool lemonade on a hot day – sugar and summer fit like a hand in a well-worn glove. Lose the wasted, extra calories and make sugar a treat, not a daily habit. Embrace the bounty of summer fruits that have real sugar – peaches, plums watermelon, cherries, blueberries. Go berry picking, catch fireflies. After all, summer really isn’t about the sugar, it’s about the memories.

Speaking of Health…

Living with regret itself can hinder our health. We all have things we might be regretful for, but if living a healthy, authentic life is a goal of yours, take the reigns and jump into today. Let go of past mistakes, embrace the now. The chance to begin again is a gift. Making the same mistakes and feeling regret over and over can lead to a great deal of stress, which, in turn, can affect our hormones, heart, blood pressure and a whole host of issues totally within our control.

What about you? Do you have anything you feel regret over that you need to put in the past? Do you want to finish this summer as healthy as you can be, living it regret-free? Share in the comments below.

Need some healthy inspiration? I have two great ideas: sign up for my upcoming cooking class, or a healthy VIP day with me. Both can help you with your own regret free summer!