Summer is almost here – eeek! The rising temperatures mean more skin is showing and many people find themselves scrutinising their bodies and focusing on problem areas much more than they normally would. Never fear – hear are my 6 tips to help you kick start your summer fitness and achieve your best bikini body yet!
1. Alternate workouts
Do you always go to the gym and head straight for the treadmill or cross trainer? Or maybe you sign up for the same classes every week. Once your body is used to a certain exercise, the muscles are stronger and the workout stops being as effective. Switch up your workout and find something that targets different sets of muscles to your regular one to get your metabolism kicking and help you achieve your fitness goals.
Supercharge it: Try a combination of classes and self-paced exercises. Your workouts don’t all have to be in the gym and you may find that you enjoy going for a run by the beach much more than staring at the same wall while running on a treadmill. Save the repetition for your classes and get outdoors more to help stave off workout boredom and keep your motivation running high.
2. Make the switch
A healthy lifestyle starts with a healthy diet but healthy diets don’t happen in a day. Make it a gradual process by starting with healthier swaps for things you’re already eating. I often switch my spaghetti for julienned and lightly steamed zucchini because it keeps me satisfied without the heavy feeling I sometimes get after eating pasta. Eating foods that are high in nutrients help your body to function at its best and provide you with sustained energy throughout the day. You may even notice a reduction in digestive issues.
Supercharge it: Try adding a scoop of protein powder to your meals to provide you with sustained energy and help stave off the snack cravings between meals. I love the IsoWhey Wholefoods Organic Bio-fermented Pea + Brown Rice Protein Powder because it’s 100% organic and tastes great in a smoothie or sprinkled on top of your favourite breakfast bowl.
3. Invest in some funky active wear
Getting dressed is half the battle and it’s hard to be motivated when your workout gear is a ratty old t-shirt and some sweatpants. Get some workout gear that you feel great in and you can’t wait to put on. Once you’ve got some great outfits, you’ll find yourself making any excuse to wear them. Remember, it’s much better to invest in a slightly more expensive pair of runners that really supports your feet than to buy the cheap pair that just don’t quite fit you properly.
Supercharge it: If you’re more more interested in technology than the latest sports bra you’re not alone. Invest in a fitness tracker that alerts you when you’ve met your goals and syncs to your phone to allow you to keep track of and celebrate your improvements though a graph that’s climbing every day!
4. Every goal matters, even the small ones
I go by the motto, “Olympic athletes weren’t’t built in a day.” Don’t be too hard on yourself and don’t lose all motivation just because you made a decision that you don’t think is in line with your fitness goals. Too many people get caught up on the overall end goal and how far away achieving it seems, and don’t notice the small wins along the way such as their skin clearing up, their concentration wandering less or their jeans buttoning a little more easily. Set smaller goals for your fitness journey to keep yourself motivated throughout the process as you achieve them and always remember that one cheat meal or skipped exercise doesn’t have to define the rest of the day or throw you off for the week.
Supercharge it: Celebrate the small wins just as much as you would the large ones. Every step towards your overall fitness is one you should be proud of and progress should be celebrated – even if it’s just by a humblebrag text to a friend or post workout selfie. There’s no harm in sharing the wins and your progress may even end up being someone else’s #motivation!
5. Rope in your friends
Instead of talking yourself out of meal prep or a workout because you’re too busy, try opening up your diary by buddying up. Find a friend who is also committed to their fitness and do meal prep together because as the saying goes, twice the hands means half the work! You’ll have much more fun and it can be a great way to catch up.
Supercharge it: Get a group of friends together and instead of going for the usual fortnightly dinner or brunch, agree to all go for a long bushwalk together. The conversation and great vibes will lead to a much easier workout and everyone in it together means that you’re likely to push on for longer than you normally would.
6. Don’t focus on your weight
People’s weight fluctuates every day and when you add in the fact that muscle weighs more than fat, you start to understand why many people can be appearing to loose weight without actually shedding any kilos. Shift your focus instead to loosing fat and your best measurement is how well your clothes are fitting and how your body is looking. Take a photo of yourself each week and after about 6 weeks of focusing on your fitness you should be able to see a pretty big difference, allowing you to shift your focus from the number on the scales.
Supercharge it: Throw out your scales!