It’s Not Too Late For That Summer Bod
Halfway through summer and starting to lose hope of getting that summer body after you gave up your finals week “diet?”
While weight loss may seem a hopeless task, it’s never too late to get back in shape. Here are a few tried-and-true tips and tricks that’ll help you reach your ideal body by the time you have to pack up and head back to campus.
1. Avoid the all-or-nothing approach. There’s a reason fad diets never work and you can only stick to your work-out-every-day approach for a few days at a time. Slowly change one or two aspects of your lifestyle at a time. Do short, quick exercises whenever you have a few minutes of downtime, or during commercial breaks. Start packing your lunch instead of eating out. Pick two days a week you won’t snack past dinner. Slow and steady wins the race.
2. Make working out fun. Get a workout buddy to both hold you accountable and share in your misery. Make a killer workout playlist. Get new sneakers or workout gear. Peruse Groupon for deals on workout classes in your area — they make you more likely to show up to the gym, keep your workout interesting, and may even help you find a workout buddy.
3. Check the nutrition facts before you eat something. Simply seeing how much fat or sodium is in your favorite snack may make you think twice about how much you’re planning on eating. And, speaking of snacks, don’t buy them when you go on your weekly trip to the grocery store. This will force you to go out of your way to get that bag of chips when the cravings set in — the one way being lazy will help you lose weight.
4. Don’t forget to stay hydrated. Dehydration can be mistaken for hunger, so make sure you’re drinking eight glasses of water a day. Drinking lots of water can also make you feel full, helping you to avoid snacking. You can shake things up by getting your water intake from your coffee or tea, or even adding fruit to your water.
5. Eat foods high in fiber and/or water. Fruits, vegetables, and beans are all great sources for this. Fiber controls the speed at which you digest food, and it makes you feel full.
6. Weigh in every week. This is how you track your progress and hold yourself accountable. Although the scale isn’t necessarily the most important part of getting in shape, it can be a good indicator of what you did right or wrong with your diet and exercise that week. Don’t beat yourself up if you don’t immediately see the results you desire. No one ever said the road to weight loss was an easy or short one.
7. Don’t skip the weights. More muscle equals more fat burn per workout. It also means more powerful workouts, more effective workouts, a more fit and toned physique, and generally becoming a stronger and healthier person.
8. HIIT: High Intensity Interval Training. AKA, several short periods of high-intensity cardio with brief periods of rest in between. This method has proven to be far more effective than a long period of steady-state cardio (read: you can stop jogging on the treadmill for an hour at a time). Among many other benefits, this form of exercise has shown to increase your metabolic rate for more than 24 hours after you finish your workout. Yeah, you read that right. HIIT gives you an extra calorie-burning boost for an entire day after your workout. What more could you ask from your workout? Not sure where to start? Find some ideas here, here, and here.
Now, time to get off your computer and start moving. Happy fitnessing!