Losing weight in the summertime and into fall is best. It’s the warmest time of the year without usually being too hot for exercise. For most of us, it beats trying to start an exercise routine in the winter months when it’s cold and there might even be ice on the ground. We’ll have far too many excuses not to begin an exercise routine and put it off for another year when leaving it to the winter months. Don’t wait that long! Dive in this summer and build some momentum through the rest of the year instead.

Here are five ways to lose weight by starting out right and pushing through.

Set Achievable Fitness Goals

When you don’t have a plan, things rarely work out. That’s the reality of life, unfortunately.

When wanting to lose weight, you’ll need a plan to get there. It won’t happen overnight; it will require persistence over a few months, at least.

Decide what your fitness goals should be. Make them specific. If you don’t know your current weight and waist measurement, check them. If you aren’t sure about what your weight should be at your height, you can verify this here.

Typical weight loss is around 1-2 pounds a week. Much more than that and your body will have a difficult time adjusting to your changing shape. Set goals based on two pounds a week, plan how to burn off 7,000 calories a week, and schedule it.

Support Your Exercise Goals with Effective Hydration

To stick to your fitness goals, you must provide what your body needs. One of the things it must have is sufficient water.

Drinking water isn’t just something you do at home or right before a workout. It begins in the morning when you get up, relieve yourself, and then need to drink a glass of water to replenish. If you sleep in a climate that’s hot even at night, like Texas, then drink more to compensate.

At work, there might be an office sparkling water machine to get the water that’s needed. Alternatively, a commercial water cooler or refrigerator might have been installed to let staff store their bottled drinks until they need them.

Make a recommendation to get a flavored water dispenser. Companies like Bevi make them and they provide healthy water drinks on demand. It can be part of a health initiative by the company.

Get Involved in Group Activities

When you find it difficult to exercise alone and prefer to do it in groups, find group activities that you’ll look forward to going to.

The type of activity doesn’t matter all that much as long as it’s one where you’re physically active for 30 minutes or longer per session.

Some ideas include mixed martial arts lessons, walking as a group, Tai Chi, or swimming with friends at the local pool. A workout buddy at the gym makes it less intimidating if you dislike walking into a gym alone too. You could also try walking tour groups in your city to become more active among other people and be entertained at the same time.

Use Podcasts or Audiobooks During Exercise

The process of jogging for 30-60 minutes or performing another physical activity purely for the exercise can get boring if you’re doing it alone. It’s much better to get into the zone, so you don’t have to think about the physical activity itself. This is especially true if you’re not the most enthusiastic of exercisers. You can intentionally distract yourself by getting your mind to focus on other things. This is best done through podcasts or audiobooks.

Find some podcasts that you’ll enjoy or will inspire you. There’s so many to choose from now whether created by professional broadcasters or amateurs with something interesting to say. You can download them using an app like Stitcher and save them for when you exercise next. This gives you a little more motivation to focus on your fitness because you then have some enjoyment to come along with you. The same goes for audiobooks if you have a book that you’d love to listen to.

Making It a Lifestyle Change

Exercising and losing weight requires a change in lifestyle for many people. Move away from unhealthy eating and maybe drinking habits too (beer has a good number of calories). Switch to better meals, more water instead of bad soda, and even adding in a multi-vitamin for good supplementation too.

Similarly, with how we manage our time, it’s about making exercise a lifestyle choice with adaptations to include exercise time rather than just fitting it in. It must become part of your new life – not something you put up with for a few months until you’ve shifted the pounds. Otherwise, the changes won’t stick.

Hopefully, we’ve given you some incentive to make positive changes this summer. Don’t leave it too late to start though.