How to Look and Feel Your Best This Summer

Four Scripps doctors weigh in

Woman walking on pier

Summer is around the corner, and if you’re like most San Diegans, you want to look and feel your best so you enjoy our Southern California surf and sun. Our doctors at Scripps Coastal Medical Center in Encinitas are sharing all their personal best practices for getting — and staying — in top physical and mental shape, during the summer and all year long.

Diane Vu, DO

Family medicine physician Diane Vu, DO, sticks to comprehensive lifestyle changes she made three years ago when she realized she had to make her health a priority. She adheres to a balanced diet, exercises consistently and strives to maintain a positive mental outlook.

“I stay away from sugar and processed goods, and try to eat plenty of vegetables and fruit. I find that this diet contributes to a high energy level, sound sleep and an overall sense of well-being. I also firmly believe that finding a physical activity that is fun for you is important. There are a lot of good exercise programs for all age groups that you can do at your convenience. I love to go for walks or run; I get my headset on and go.

Lastly, I try to practice an attitude of gratitude, finding something to be grateful for every day, which in turn makes me able to deal with stress and problems a little easier.”

Gay Walker, MD

Internal medicine physician Gay Walker, MD, focuses on physical fitness.

“Exercise is critical for me and helps me control my weight and manage my stress. As we head into spring and summer, competition season starts in earnest in my equestrian discipline, dressage. To stay in shape, I like to mix it up in the gym, from a good Pilates workout to lifting weights and performing balance challenges. Between my gym workouts and horseback riding, I usually exercise seven days a week. With all that activity, I also make sure to drink plenty of water and eat enough protein.”

David Ko, MD

Internal medicine physician David Ko, MD, makes sure he stays fit and flexible in the midst of a busy lifestyle.

“I try to incorporate some physical activity at work because it is difficult to get to the gym with my busy schedule. In between patients, I do light stretching of the upper arms, shoulders, hands and wrists, along with stretching exercises for the lower back and legs. Doing this with co-workers is a great way to take a break, increase blood flow and improve the mood in the office. Outside of the office, I find that hiking Torrey Pines is both invigorating and relaxing.”

Gerard Lumkong, MD

Family medicine physician Gerard Lumkong, MD, cycles both indoors and outside for mental and physical well-being.

“My favorite workouts are spin classes, which I do two to three days a week to help me stay in cycling shape for my long bike rides in North County. I began spin classes when I ‘bonked’ on my first road bike trip with some fellow Scripps physicians 13 years ago. I’ve been spinning since. Road cycling, although it has its inherent dangers, along the 101 is outright therapeutic — looking at the bluffs, the ocean, the many surfers riding waves at all the iconic breaks. It’s a great opportunity to bond with fellow cyclists on group rides or chat with a stranger you might run into on a solo ride. I also enjoy yoga and tennis.”