The first day of Spring has come and gone. We are officially in the second season of the year. Now is the time to start getting your body “summer-ready”. What does that mean exactly? It means you are comfortable slipping on your swimsuit, confident showing off your arms, legs, or any other part of your body you would like to, and it means feeling healthy and fit! If you need help getting started on your summer body transformation, keep reading for additional information.
The first and probably most important part of achieving your summer body is setting a goal. We suggest setting a variety of goals – an ultimate weight goal, a workout frequency goal, and a food/calorie goal. Food is a huge part of your fitness journey! If you are interested in slimming down, you will have to watch what you are eating. The first food rule is that you should consume most of your calories before 3pm. There’s also a school of thought that says you shouldn’t eat anything after 7pm. If you tend to eat out all the time, it can be hard to lose weight. Portion control and calorie counting is easier when you control the food.
To start off you will also need to set, what we call, a baseline. This is where you currently are with your physical activity, and will help you track how far you’ve come as you move through your fitness journey. Also, don’t let your weekend get you out of your fitness flow. Commit to starting and ending every week with some sort of workout; even if it’s just a brisk walk, it helps! When you do cardio, intervals help you lose the most weight. High intensity interval training is an interval based workout that is extremely popular now-a-days. When you are weight training, it’s important to focus on specific muscles. “Moves like squats and lunges work the biggest muscles in your body, which means you get the biggest calorie burn during and after exercise.” says Craig Ballantyne, C.S.C.S., author of Turbulence Training.
An important element of your workouts is stretching, both before and after your workout. “The power of stretching is vastly underrated and oftentimes forgotten,” says Joey Hays, a certified GX cycle instructor in Portland, OR. “As we age, the elasticity of our muscles decreases and is accelerated by sports that can overuse and overwork muscles through repetitive motion.”
Feeding your muscles after a workout is also important. Make sure to eat protein within a half an hour of your workout. And drinking water, lots of water, also helps your body replenish as well as flush out toxins you don’t need.
Zip Fitness and all of our personal trainers are available to help you achieve your goals. Swing by any of our Chicago, IL locations. Check out all our weight and cardio equipment as well as other amenities, like tanning beds. We hope to see you soon!