It’s finally here, SUMMER! Days are getting longer and temperatures are rising. Bulky Sweaters, jackets and bagging jeans will have to go to the back of our closets and the thought of stuffing our bodies into sun dresses, shorts and bikinis can come with a little intimidation. However, you don't have to fear summertime, it is never too late to get on the track to healthy living and the best body you have ever had.
This summer can be the summer you make the changes to help you shed the extra weight; have more energy; and jump in and out of the pool and ocean with confidence.
These are my top Summer Body Tips:
Fit is the new skinny. Yes, we want to cut calories and we can lose weight by cutting calories. However, it’s much more effective when we burn some of those extra calories; we can do this by adding 30 minutes of cardio exercise into our schedules. Weight training is extremely effective in building a leaner body, but you won’t be able to see those amazing muscle if a layer of fat is covering them.
Cutting and burning calories can only get you so far; you will surely plateau. As we become lighter, our bodies require fewer calories, which means we will need to add more cardio or eat less food and most of us do not want to do that. I hear it all the time “Beth, I eat less food then I ever have and I weight more” My answer is BUILD A BIGGER ENGINE. Building a body with more muscle will require more fuel (food). Strength training three to four times a week will not only do amazing things for your figure and will help you sleep better, put you in a better mode and give you more energy.
Cut the Sugars
So we need to cut some of the calories and the calories we want to cut is sugar. Try to eliminating foods that are high in sugar. Read your labels (1 gram of sugar = 4 teaspoons). Mountain Dew has 77 grams of sugar in a single serving (77 grams = 19.5 teaspoons of sugar). Sugar in your bloodstream means more insulin is needed to balance things out, which will eventually lead to increased body fat. Simple sugars can be found in both natural and processed foods.
Replace bad fats with healthy fats
Despite what you may have been told, not all fats are the bad guys and replacing some of the bad fats with healthy fats can help with the waistline war. While fats all contain 9 calories per gram, they can have very different effects on your health as well as your weight. “Bad fats," such as trans fats, are guilty of the unhealthy things that in the past all fats have been blamed for, such as weight gain and clogged arteries. But good fats such as fats high in omega-3s can have the opposite effect. In fact, healthy fats play a huge role in helping your moods, fighting fatigue, staying on top of your mental game and even controlling your weight. So eat your avocadoes!
The Secret Weapon
We have all heard about superfoods; these are natural solutions to improve health. Coconut Oil is one that I use every day. Why do I love coconut oil so much? It’s versatility, there are many uses for coconut oil and it’s super easy to get the health benefits. It’s a healthy fat and it’s great for cooking. Switch your cooking oil to coconut oil. When we use a healthy fat to cook in our veggies and meats stay healthy. Coconut oil is also slow to oxidize—even when heated at high temperatures, which means it is less likely to go rancid and become unhealthy. Fatty acids in coconut oil contain antimicrobial, antioxidant and antifungal properties that contribute to overall wellness.
Coconut can also help weight loss by stimulating the burning of fat for energy and it may even help control cravings and overeating. Try to add at least a tablespoon daily to your diet to get the benefits. Make sure you choose an unrefined, virgin coconut oil; refined coconut oil has been heated and processed, this destroys many of the oil’s wonderful properties.
Coconut is also an amazing head-to-toe moisturizer, which is great for that summer glow. Don’t forget your hair!
The summer months can be intimidating when your body isn't beach ready. Go ahead get the shorts and bathing suits out and try them on today. This is your starting point. Today can be the day you start your transformation and in a couple of weeks you will start see results.
YOU GOT THIS!
Beth Douglas is the general manager at Onelife Fitness in Gainesville. You can email Beth any questions about your health and fitness goals at email@example.com.
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