After a rainy May, many of us are ready for the sunshine and warmth that summertime promises. At the same time, it's important to maintain focus on our health and wellness during the long days ahead.
Make sure you don't let the heat be
an excuse to isolate yourself.
While we do need to be careful of staying out of the strong sun and high temperatures, it's important not to let the hot weather keep you indoors.
Plan activities for early morning or the evening.
These are perfect times to take advantage of cooler temperatures; take a stroll through your neighborhood or to head to a park and eat your dinner outdoors. Being outside is one of the quickest ways we can give our mental health a much needed boost and improve our mood.
While you may need to stay inside during the heat of the day, use those hours to
phone a friend.
Even a few minutes of chatting with your Compeer friend can help decrease your sense of isolation and loneliness.
Long days can make it difficult to
get enough sleep.
The sun is up early and stays bright long past eight o'clock in the evening. Try to make your bedroom dimmer by hanging heavy curtains (Walmart has blackout panels starting under $10). Use a fan to stay cool and to drown out street noises. Stick to the same bedtime and routine that you have for cooler months. Avoid the temptation to sleep the day away: too much sleep can contribute to depression in the same way that too little sleep does.
Stay active - and cool - during the summer by walking a few loops at the Lebanon Valley Mall. Or see if you can get a reduced-price membership to the Y and make use of their indoor pool. Exercise is not just great for our muscles; the endorphins it produces have a great impact on lifting our mood!
Finally, take advantage of all the
fresh and local fruit and veggies
that are in the markets! Eating well helps our heart and body stay healthy-plus, it tastes delicious! Visit a roadside farm stand for inexpensive fruits and vegetables grown right here in Lebanon County, or pick your own berries (see the list, right). Wash all that good eating down with
plenty of water
; staying well hydrated will help you beat the summer heat and enjoy these longer days!
Pick Your Own!
Here are a few local farms where you can pick fruit; call ahead for hours and pricing.
(1819 Thompson Ave., Lebanon) Strawberries, raspberries, cherries. 867-4611
Sycamore Springs Orchard
(1901 Thompson Ave., Lebanon) Black raspberries, apples. 867-4389
(40 Lengel Road, Myerstown) Delicious berries! 866-5807