In January, as we embrace the "new year, new me” attitude, you may find yourself among the new crowd at the local gym. There is a significant rise in gym memberships, health supplement sales and wellness company clients. There is a lull in February and March but in April, oh sweet April, as soon as that scent of spring arises, panic ensues. People get serious about getting their summer bodies right. Fad dieting, cleansing, calorie cutting; people will do whatever it takes to speed the toning up and slimming down process along.
Despite the thought that “summer bodies are made in the Winter” the truth is, summer bodies are made and maintained all year long. We are living in the ultimate era of health and wellness. More people are adapting a healthier lifestyle, women are learning to appreciate their bodies, men are taking yoga and the mindfulness effect is catching on. There are limitless resources available to us, supporting us in all areas of healthy living. It is truly a beautiful time to be alive.
So why are we making it so difficult? Perhaps we are simply overloaded with conflicting ideas. There is so much information spewed at us everywhere we go and through everyone we encounter. Friends, the media, our doctors, bloggers and organizations are chock full of suggestions and new studies. If you are an average person without much experience in fitness and nutrition, all the advice and data can be quite overwhelming. This can lead to yo-yo dieting, supplement trying, eating too many calories from fat or trying other theories that just do not work, leaving you frustrated and reaching for the cookie jar.
To this, I say, relax. Summer bodies are easier to make, mold and maintain than you think. I have trained many body shapes and sizes, and while everyone has unique needs, there are some staples that everyone can follow to work on a summer body through the seasons.
First, make sure you are hydrated all year long. Winter, spring summer and fall, getting your water in will help you all. There are countless times hunger is mistaken for thirst, adding unnecessary calories to your daily intake. Ensure you are properly hydrated for optimal digestion, organ function, and even better skin.
Exercise can be sexy, but realistically is messy and sweaty. It is awesomely convenient to have so many fit videos, demonstrations and routines at our fingertips via social media but let’s be honest; watching a long and lean fitness model or shredded body builder work out on a beach somewhere in Bali is just plain aggravating. Focus on your own beautiful self by just taking action. Jog outside in the fall, take spin in the winter, cross fit in the spring, swim in the summer and above all else, weight train all year long! I cannot emphasize the benefits of weight training enough.
Stop overindulging through the holidays. And on birthdays. And during wedding season. And on Football Sundays. And through all the BBQs of summer. Stick to lean proteins and veggies often. Avoid the breadbasket often. Stick with non-sugary quenchers and choose your over-indulgences sporadically and wisely.
If you can stay consistent with these lifestyle changes, as well as make other choices that are specific to your needs, you are sure to see that summer body all year long!