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Summer is fast approaching. Can you feel it? Sure, this season brings about the joy of hanging with good friends, BBQ’s, and sunshine, but for some it’s partnered with the feeling of dread…for bathing suit season that is!

No need to feel squeamish this bathing suit season. Just use these helpful tips and you’ll be ready to flaunt it right in time for the first beach party!

These tips are divided into three distinct sections 1) Exercise 2) Food and Nutrition 3) Beachy Bonuses.

Read through the whole article to make sure you get the full benefit of all of these great tips.

 

EXERCISE – Work it off. Firm it up.

The best way to look better is to work for it. Here are a few things to keep in mind during your workout to help give you an added boost.

Don’t just do Cardio: You many think that you only have to pump up the cardio in order to lose the extra poundage you put on over the winter, but you need a balance of cardio and strength training to get the best results. Sure, cardio burns calories and gets rid of fat, but strength training will help increase your resting metabolism and firms and tones the body. So, for best results mix both into your training session.

  • For long lean muscles, work with lighter weights and do more reps.
  • Try doing 30-60 seconds of cardio in between your strength training sets (IE. jumping jacks or jump rope) or adding some high intensity intervals (HIIT) to your cardio routine. This will challenge your heart and lungs throughout your workout and will therefore burn more calories.

Work your Core:  A good posture will make you instantly look better in a swimsuit. Pulling your shoulders back and keeping your head up will not only make you look confident but will also pull your stomach in. Having a strong core is essential to having good posture. Core muscles are the abdominals, lower back, obliques and glutes. Strengthening the core will also help you lose fat faster and will keep your waistline looking tight and slim.

For a great core workout check out our article: The Low Down on Core Strength Training

Try All-in-One Routines: Research shows that full body workouts are more beneficial to losing weight because you will burn more calories from working out all of the major muscle groups at the same time. Plus, a full body workout is great for those who have a hard time sticking to a schedule. If you can’t make a workout, you won’t miss working on a certain muscle group like you would if you do split-workouts. A great piece of equipment to help you get your full body workout on is a suspension gym. Because you are suspended from holding onto hanging straps you have the added bonus of trying to keep your balance in every exercise. This will keep your core and legs engaged in every exercise you do.

Check out The Human Trainer suspension gym.

Squat!: Squats are probably the best exercise you can do to gain leg definition in your thighs and help you have a cute perky butt!

Don’t underestimate the power of a sexy defined back: If you haven’t already, make sure to add some bent over rows, lat pull-downs and pull-ups to your workout sessions.

Stretch: Stretching the tight muscles in your body will help elongate your muscles resulting in looking leaner and having better posture. For more information on stretching read: Stretching. Do You Do It?

 

FOOD AND NUTRITION – You Are What You Eat.

Drink Water: Water keeps your skin looking healthy, regulates the body, and flushes out toxins. Not drinking enough water will cause your body to retain water, which will make you look bloated.  Carbonated drinks will also make you bloat. Alcohol will make you retain water, and juices and sodas are full of sugar. Try to stick to water as much as possible. To eliminate the boring factor try added lemon or lime to your H2O.

Cut Down on Sugar & Salt: Eating sugar off balances your blood sugar levels, which causes you to crave even more sugar and increases your appetite. Try your best to avoid sugar at all costs. Foods that have a high sodium level can cause major water retention.Stay away from processed foods and fast food, as they are full of sodium, preservatives and saturated fat.

Watch your Carbs: Consuming a diet high in processed carbohydrates can cause major weight gain. Stay away from products like: breads, donuts, cakes, pizza, pasta, biscuits and muffins. Get your energy from carbs like fruits and vegetables. Just remember that fruit is high in sugar. Have no more than 1 or 2 fruits a day, and stick to the ones with lower sugar content like: apples, pears, strawberries and blueberries.

Smaller Portions. More Often: Eating 5-6 smaller meals throughout the day as oppose to the standard 3 is a good way to keep your body knowing there is always food coming. This way it won’t have reason to store fat and will keep your metabolism revved up.

Go for Healthier Protein Sources: Avoid processed meats like cold cuts, pepperoni and sausages. Fish, eggs, nuts and poultry are great protein sources. Remember that a proper protein portion is no bigger than the size of your fist!

Get your Healthy Fats: Fats from fatty fish like salmon, avocados and almonds have been found to help you gain muscle and lose fat. If you aren’t getting enough from your actual food a great alternative is fish oil supplements with Omega 3.  

 

BEACHY BONUSES 😛

Find a Flattering Suit: You may not be perfectly comfortable revealing all of your lumps and bumps but finding the right suit for your body type can help accentuate your more flattering parts and hide your weak spots, making you look and feel more va-va-voom. Remember that solid colors are always more flattering then crazy patterns, and stay away from horizontal stripes.

For great bathing suit advice for women check out Oprah.com’s article.  For men check out Esquire Magazine’s article

Get a Tan: No one wants to hit the beach looking like a big white piece of mozzarella cheese, and having a tan willmake your muscles look more defined and will give off an overall leaner appearance.  Have a few tanning bed sessions or try a spry tan.

Moisturize: You want your skin looking healthy and glowing when you hit the beach, so eliminate dry, dull skin by exfoliating regularly and moisturizing daily.

Reduce Stress: High stress levels can cause the body to produce more cortisol, which can trigger storage of abdominal fat. Take a yoga class or do daily meditation to keep your stress levels in check.

Hit the gym BEFORE the Beach: Try to lift some weights right before, or at least the day before a swimsuit day. This will cause your muscles to look fuller for your “big reveal.”

Take a Self-Esteem Pill: There is a lot to be said about the power of the human mind. Research has shown that placebo pills are just as effective and sometimes even more effective then actual medication because the mind believes it is getting meds and help healing. If you believe you are hot stuff other people will believe it too. Focus on your positives not your flaws.  

Follow these tips and you will be well on your way to looking glorious in a swimsuit.

Have a Wonderful Summer! Don’t forget to wear sunscreen!

Resources: Asiance Magazine, bodybuilding.com    

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