At the top of the list: humidity. Ok, so maybe we can't complain. We're not bombarded constantly from all sides by hurricanes, tornadoes, or swarms of killer bees ... but a trip up the block for a smoothie turns into the equivalent of a three-hour jog on an uphill treadmill for the majority of the summer here. Once you get there, you end up ordering the largest smoothie possible, with the most add-ins, and the most calories, creating a vicious, vicious cycle. Second on the list would be tourists. Virginia Beach is becoming a sort of hub for family types who want to waste no time in making little baby skin cancers all over their bodies for the sake of a tan ... which means, ahhh, more traffic! Being late due to traffic is a valid excuse 99.9% of the time here, and it's only worse during the summer.
Last on my list (for now) would have to be the gigantic mutant jellyfish that invade the rivers and coastal areas every summer. I've only been stung by a jellyfish once, and it was enough to make me fear them above most things that could possibly tear the flesh off my bones in the ocean ... and make no mistake, those things are vicious! Yet, they're oddly captivating and I'd spend all day floating above them in a kayak if I could just to watch them float by. Oh, Virginia ? I love you.
Of course, as a nation, once the summer begins to warm up, we turn our thoughts away from winter fashion, spreadsheets, homework, family dinners and covering every inch of our bodies possible. Instead, the collective hive-mind (two bee references in one blog? Crazy!) turns to the nationwide constant we never get used to: beach fear. As we're stuck gazing into our computer monitors, behind our cash registers, our inner-child is quivering with both excitement and trepidation at the thought of bearing it all for the sake of a tan line. It's very distracting!
But never fear! Having been an almost rabid collector of work out routines over the years, I'm offering you a few ways to keep your stamina going throughout your work day, which your boss will like, and ensure that you look forward to those weekly Saturday morning trips to the ocean front.
To make sure you can both spike that volleyball for the game-point, and lift heavy boxes of merchandise to make your millions, take 15 minutes out of your work day every so often to do some wrist and arm exercises. Begin by pressing your hands together in front of your chest, with your elbows bent and parallel to the floor. Bend your wrists to the left and right as though your hands were locked in Gladiator-style mortal combat. Now go forth and conquer the volleyball net, Spartacus! To keep your legs in swimming shape, try a few leg extensions every now and then. While sitting in your chair, or any chair, extend your left leg until it is level with your hip. Hold this position for a few seconds and then repeat with the other leg. It's always a terrific idea to stay hydrated during the summer with water, and this exercise is something you can do with that water bottle you bought from the snack machine. (Of course, this works best if you use a full water bottle. Don't be lazy ? this is your job and beach vacation we're talking about!) Hold the water bottle tightly in one hand, with your back straight, and curl the bottle towards your shoulder in slow but steady movements. Once you feel you're adequately Hulked-out, repeat with the other arm.
Not only will these simple exercises keep you in fighting shape to ward off the jellyfish on your fabulous vacation to Virginia Beach, but they will also keep your blood flowing and your stamina high-powered enough to keep you going all day long at work. There, Spartacus. Now all you need to do is boot up that computer, grab a bottle of water and hit the beach! When all else fails, just smile, nod and repeat, 'veni, vidi, vici!'