It's already the middle of July. The winter always seems interminably long and the summer forever away, and then BANG suddenly it's half over.
I don't know about you, but I don't want to spend a lof time in the gym when the weather is delightful and warm. Maybe you also spend time out of the city, where you don't have a gym. At the same time, you're wearing a swim suit or shorts and a tank, so you want to keep your body looking as good as possible. Here are a few tips that require very little of you, but taken together will make your body look and feel better very quickly.
1) Drink a lot of water. Seriously, it flushes your body and decreases the appearance of bloating. Drink at least one ounce for every two pounds of body weight every day.
2) Cut the Crap - The best general nutrition advice can be found in my Guide to Supportive Nutrition. But since we're already half way through beach season, lets do some carbohydrate manipulation to get your body to selectively burn more fat. Cut out all of the carbohydrates (including, and especially the sugars) on up to three days each week. Your body's preferred fuel source is sugar (and the white and/or processed carbs that your body treats as sugars). Oh, and sorry about it, but alcohol, too. When your body doesn't have sugar for a fuel source, it turns to the only other source can burn for energy - body fat. This trick alone will have a huge impact in how you look in that bathing suit in just a week or two. And always, remember that Protein is your friend and Sugar is your enemy.
3) Supercharge your cardio with interval training. Instead of doing long, steady, boring slogs on the treadmill, do shorter workouts with intervals of intense all out work and very slow (catch your breath) intervals. Intervals can be anywhere from thirty seconds to two minutes. And they can be done anywhere, though doing jog/sprints on the beach is quite enjoyable. twenty to thirty minues will cut it.
4) Make your strength work a fat-burner. Instead of resting between each set of exercises, combine eight exercises, work straight through them all without resting, and then rest. Big, full-body exercises are best for this. For example, do the following without resting, 15 repetitions each:
Split Squats, Push-Ups, Squat Jumps, Bench/Chair Dips, Alternating Lunges, Narrow Push-Ups, Hip Bridges, Bicycle Crunches.
Do three rounds with two minutes of rest between each round.
Implement these four simple strategies, and you will definitely feel and look better as the summer progresses into Labor Day.
If you want help and/or motivation and structure, come take my new 6-week, single goal Focus Groups (just $65/week). One focuses on fat loss and getting more toned/ripped. The other is for adding muscle weight, especially good for "hard gainers" ;-)
Check them out on my program page:
Greg Rothman, MS PT, is a fitness professional, writer and the owner of Empower Fitness in NYC. He received his Masters Degree in Physical Therapy from Columbia University and has twenty years of experience in the fitness and rehabilitation fields. He believes that absolutely anyone can have the body of their dreams once they understand how to eat and exercise in a way that supports their goals. It is his mission to Empower as many people as possible to do just that. His “Recession-Proof” Fitness Programs are an affordable way to find dramatic physical change over the course of 10 weeks. Greg is happy to hear from you if you have questions about any topic related to fitness or nutrition, and can be found at www.GetEmpoweredFitness.com.