Is the word “bikini” making you cringe? Are the thoughts of sunny days at the beach making you nervous? Summer essentially means fun, it’s a joyful season filled with so much glee so why is the thought of upcoming hot days making you frown? Truth be told, many of us find even a one-piece bathing suit with a skirt scary. Still, it’s time to shake those negative thought off and welcome summer with sunscreen, a sun hat and a huge smile. We rounded up some of the best tips for you to get your summer body ready in time for beach season.
1. Lots of water: Do your best to drink mainly water. If you’re going for a sports or energy drink, fruit smoothie, or light beer, keep in mind that each serving holds about 100 calories. Yet these beverages don’t satisfy you the way 100 calories of food does, so they’re just a waste. Also, other liquids may be high in sodium and carbohydrates, which trick your body into retaining water, puffing you out. If you’re thirsty, just reach for water, always keep a water bottle with you and keep yourself hydrated.
2. Strength training: Strength train two times a week. As you probably already know, muscle burns more calories than fat. By adding three pounds of muscle to your frame you’ll speed your metabolism by as much as 7 percent. In the beginning, focus on doing the weightlifting exercises properly. Once that is taken care of, you can take the intensity up a notch so you aim for failure. Basically, you need to work your muscles until you can’t do another rep.
3. Cinnamon: Sprinkle cinnamon in your cereal and coffee. It’s a great metabolism booster! Without going into scientifically explaining why and how it works, adding 1/4 to 1 teaspoon of this spice to something you eat every day helps blood sugar get into cells to be used for energy, thus less gets stored as fat.
4. Minimizing your meals: Eat frequent, small - 400 to 500 calories - meals. If you exceed that number of calories, even if it’s in the form of non-fat food, your body will probably store it as fat. For an active woman her diet should consist of 1,500 to 2,500 calories a day, depending on current weight and weigh loss goal. Ideally, every meal should have a little protein, a little fat and a little fibrous bulk to ensure you feel full and satisfied.
5. Lower your carbs intake: A no-carb diet is not recommended because that will make you crave all sorts of unhealthy foods, so it’s a binge waiting to happen. While you do need carbs for energy, it’s a good idea to lighten up on carbohydrates intake. Go for half your normal portion of rice, potatoes or pasta. Fill up instead on all the vegetables you want. Also, a great tip is to use 4 tablespoons of hummus instead of 2 tablespoons of regular mayonnaise on your sandwich. Or go with mustard, which is almost calorie-free (only 3 per little packet!).