10 Steps to Help You Get Ready for Spring Break

spring break tipsSome how it happens every year- one minute you are wearing layer upon layer, feasting on comfort food and sipping hot cocoa near a warm fire on the couch, and the next the sun has reappeared and it is time to slip back into that itty-bitty bikini. No matter how hard we try, it seems that those itty-bitty bikinis become even more itty-bitty after a holiday season’s worth of lounging and indulging. While it is important to enjoy and indulge during the holidays, moderation is key in order to avoid falling into “panic mode” weeks before Spring Break.

Here in Santa Barbara we are blessed with the unique ability to spend time outdoors almost 365 days a year. Without the ability to use unsuitable weather conditions as an excuse to avoid activity, we are never forced to completely surrender to the wintertime laziness that plagues a great deal of the rest of the country during the frigid winter months. Even with our lack of “true winter” on the gorgeous California coast, there is no denying that it is easy to let our healthy eating and active fitness regiments fall to the way side during these chillier months. Whether you kept up your active routine or completely fell off the wagon, it’s never too late to get in shape and there’s no better time to start than today! From tips for getting back on the fitness track, to important spring break safety precautions, here are ten important things to keep in mind as spring break approaches!

1. Sun Safety: While achieving that perfect bronze complexion may be at the top of your spring break to do list, sunscreen is still essential. Avoid skin damage and painful sun burns by applying sunscreen frequently and generously. Even with sunscreen, you will still develop a healthy sun kissed glow.

2. Hydrate: Drinking plenty of water leading up to spring break as well as during will help ensure that you stay hydrated throughout long days in the sun. Additionally, drinking plenty of water will help your skin stay hydrated and looking flawless.

3. Don’t wait until the last minute: There is no time like the present; try on your swimsuit and beach wear now. Trying it on now will motivate you to stay on track with your goals and will prevent any last minute wardrobe malfunctions or meltdowns.

4. Switch it up: When you get comfortable with one certain workout routine it can be easy to just kind of coast on autopilot when you’re working out. When you constantly give your body the same exercises, you reach a point of plateau. If you feel like you aren’t getting the results you want then switch things up! Try a fun new zumba class, spice up your treadmill workout with fat blasting speed intervals or alternate between running and incline walking to tone and target a variety of muscles. If you usually do only cardio, add some light weight training to your routine. Keep your body guessing and surprise yourself with the awesome changes you will see.

5. Reach for fruits and veggies: In the weeks leading up to spring break the best snack to reach for is fresh fruits and veggies. Fruits and veggies are high in a variety of vitamins, antioxidants, and fiber and they will also help you avoid snacking on processed foods that are packed with bloat-causing sodium.

6. Befriend Fiber: If you are traveling across the country, or maybe even the world for spring break, be sure to fill up on fiber rich foods to keep your system on track. Travel can mess up your digestive system causing unwanted bloat and painful stomachaches!

7. Know before you go: Especially if traveling abroad, be sure to do some research on your destination before hand. Knowing which areas are safe to explore and establishing a buddy system is key.

8. Start Saving: Vacation is a time to treat yourself and the experience is that much more rewarding when you have really worked for it. Simple steps like ordering a few less lattes at Starbucks each week, or eating out less goes a long way. Use the saved up cash to splurge on a nice dinner, a piƱa colada on the beach, or an adventurous excursion.

9. Stay Active: It can be tempting to just lounge around and relax all break but try to incorporate some fun activity into your break. Take a hike, go for a beach walk, or make up a fun beach workout. Encourage your friends to get up and go, they will follow your lead!

10. Limit alcohol intake: Limiting your alcohol intake on spring break is an important precaution to take in order to ensure that you stay healthy and safe. In preparation for spring break it may also be beneficial to cut back on the booze in order to save calories and feel as fit as possible when it’s time to put on that swim suit!

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