Let me just state the obvious. SUMMER IS HERE. And now is the time to get in shape. We are all out with the winter woolens and in with the summery style. We are all set to embrace those floral prints and flaunt those beachy shirts.
The only problem?
We have let ourselves go all winter and now it is so difficult to get that perfect toned summer physique. Yes, we all plan to get in shape. Yes, we all plan to workout often. And yes, we all plan to cut down on carbs.
But, do we actually do that?
I know that it is so hot outside that working out is next to impossible. And of course, we cannot resist the ice creams or the cold drinks. Do not look so stressed and guilty. We can figure this out together. We will get in shape for all the pretty little dresses we have kept away for summer. And for some lucky ones of us, we may even get to show off the perfect beach body on the weekend trip to Goa.
But before that, let’s get in action.
The process to get in shape is a two-fold task. One, dropping the extra kilos, and two, intake no more extra calories.
First of all, we will start with the easy part. Let’s limit our calories intake. We do this by tweaking our food habits a little. Follow these 5 tips to be summer fit and keep calories at bay:
Drink lots and lots of water
This is the most basic one but we rarely comply with it. Water not only relinquishes thirst, it also maintains the body temperature. Staying hydrated helps keep up the energy level.
Avoid taking soft drinks
In summers, many people often start having soft drinks or aerated beverages that are full of sugar and contain an insane amount of calories. Instead, try having a lot of fresh fruits like watermelons and oranges to keep up the hydration level and also get some nutrition.
Go meatless for one day
In the summers, it is not a great idea to have animal protein on a regular basis. So to avoid troubling your digestive system with these complex proteins and save yourself some guilt in front of the weighing machine.
Have light, healthy and frequent meals
In the summer, having uncooked or lightly cooked food is the kind of taking care your body needs and deserve. Have light meals at a short interval to avoid calories overload. This is a key point to get in shape as this keeps us mindful of what we are eating.
Include fruits in every meal
It is often said that one should eat the fruit that is grown in that season. So all you mango lovers, you are in luck, the mango season is here and you can already start enjoying this special fruit.
PS: citrus fruits are rich in the detoxification effects properties and the tangy flavor leaves you refreshed.
Now, that your eating habits are sorted, let get moving.
We need to shed that winter fat to get in shape, and we can do that by working out.
However, working out in the sun can cause problems like heat cramps, severe dehydration, heat exhaustion and heat stroke. In order to avoid these problems, you should:
Shorten or split up your workouts.
In the summers, it is very easy to get exhausted by the intense workout. So don’t push yourself, and split your complete workout regime into parts.
Summers are great to join an air-conditioned gym and workout in peace. If going to a gym is not a feasible option for you, not a problem. You can just rent the fitness equipment or simply exercise at home by jumping rope, running up and down the stairs or speed walking in the park.
Some other simple and innovative homemade exercises you can do are.
Dance your heart out
Just stay at home, turn up the volume and get your body moving. Dancing is the most fun and easy way to lose weight. If you dance for an hour a day, you will be drenched in sweat and will lose weight more effectively. Also, you will feel more positive, lively and energized the entire day. Many versions of dance are available online specifically directed to lose weight. Dance styles like Zumba and bhangra are great to burst those extra calories.
Stretch for a lasting effect
Even if you do not wish to work out for long, or are not in the mood, just have 5 minutes of stretching. It won’t help you lose weight but can increase the body flexibility and make you feel energetic.
Take out a yoga mat in your air-conditioned living room and experience the magical effects of yoga. Just work some poses and pauses into your morning grind. Yoga is not only great to attain physical fitness but also helps calm the nerves and attain mental peace.
Gym at home
Full-body circuit training not only burns a load of calories while you sweat, it also torches additional calories in the hours after by keeping your metabolic rate high.
Here is a routine you can try: Hold a heavy dumbbell or large water jug in each hand. Alternate walking lunges and pushups for 30-second intervals for a total of 5 rounds.
Simple exercises that do not require gym equipment can be easily practiced at home.
Even, if you do like working out with the professional gym machines, you can just rent a treadmill or an exercise bike to workout at home.
Wear Shoes That Move You
Mini-exercise blasts done all day long can easily add up to the suggested 30 minutes of physical activity. The trick is to actively seek out ways to get a little extra exercise. You can start with the basics, opt to take the stairs instead of the escalator or stand on the bus and not sit.
Chances are you probably do this anyway, but if you notice that you’re moving less when you wear cute but uncomfortable summer sandals and heels. To solve this problem, switch to more feet-friendly footwear during the day.
If you are determined to shed those kilos fast and aim to take up workout seriously. Here is the link to our previous blog, where you can get 10 simple and easy workouts at home to get in shape and 5 ways for you to stay fit.
Another great way to catch up on your daily workout is to use home furniture as workout equipment.
Get your heart pumping and your arms and abs firing with an improvised version of a mountain climber. Start by facing the couch cushions, and place your hands on the seat of the couch, arms extended. Place both the feet back out to a plank position and tighten your core.
Now, take one knee and place it towards your chest. Continue this alternative ‘running’pattern in a quick, controlled motion. Remember to keep your shoulders steady over your hands the entire time. Do this as fast as you can for one minute and you must feel your core muscles at work.
Couch Squat Cross Chop
Target your legs, butt, and core with this move that also serves as a great warm-up. Stand with your back to your couch cushions, feet hip-width apart, and your arms extended at chest height, hands clasped together. Perform a squat by bending your knees and sitting back into your hips as you chop your arms down and across to the outside of your left thigh. Pushing through your heels, quickly stand out of your squat as you bring your arms back to the start position. Repeat to the other side. Alternate sides for one minute.
Single-Leg Stand Up
Challenge your balance, legs, and glutes with this move: Stand close to but facing away from the couch. Draw your right knee up towards your chest and hold onto it with both hands. Bend your left knee, sit back into your hips, and slowly lower your body, sitting all the way back onto the couch while still holding onto your right knee. Stand back up, holding onto your knee the entire time. Repeat this 10 times on one leg and then repeat it 10 more times on the other leg.
Now that you know what to do, the last tip on how to do it. Choose whichever exercise idea resonates with you, but make sure to not overdo it. Make sure the room you are working out in is cool and you do not over stress yourself.
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