It happens every year—you make a resolution in January to hit the gym and get back in shape after the holidays, and the next thing you know it’s May and that summer wardrobe is still feeling a bit too snug. The good news is that achieving your body goals before it’s time to hit the beach is still within your reach. Here’s the ultimate guide to getting fit, lean, and gorgeous not just for the summer, but all year long.
Following a healthy, balanced diet is the best way to maintain a healthy weight. Getting the right nutrition, including proper amounts of fiber, carbohydrates, and protein, helps you achieve a fit, slim appearance by reducing fat and making it easier to build lean muscle mass. You can do this by incorporating whole foods, lean protein, and healthy fats into your diet, and especially lots of fruits and vegetables.
With summer coming, it’s a great time to take advantage of the produce showing up in the markets. Incorporating more fruits and vegetables into your diet is optimal for several reasons. First, they have a high level of the vitamins and minerals that your body needs to function properly, and part of that healthy functioning includes maintaining desired body weight. Second, thanks to all-important fiber, they keep you feeling full and satisfied with far fewer calories than you find in processed food. Finally, they reduce your cravings for processed food, which tend to be unhealthy, higher in calories, and lower in nutritional content. Committing to healthy eating year-round also pays countless dividends beyond a slimmer waistline, like reducing acne.
When it comes to losing weight, there’s no escaping the math: you have to expend more calories than you’re taking in. Since most people find dieting almost impossible to stick to, try adding exercise to your routine, instead. Not everyone is a gym person. Not everyone is a yoga person. But we promise that there is some form of physical activity that even the most devoted couch potato will enjoy. Maybe it’s going for long walks on a country trail, or biking to the beach, or joining a recreational soccer league. Whatever it is, try to sweat every day, for at least thirty minutes of physical exercise. The best way to stay motivated is to choose something that matches your level of conditioning, but which you still find challenging.
Feel like there’s just never enough time? There are some terrific resources out there for people who want to fit exercise into their busy lifestyles. Workout videos have come a long way since the days of Jane Fonda, covering a range of exercise styles, intensity, and price. With a little browsing, you’re sure to find something that you find enjoyable and affordable—many of the best ones are available for free on YouTube.
Poor sleep has been found in numerous studies to lead to weight gain, a higher body mass index, and increased difficulty in losing unwanted pounds. People who get fewer than seven hours of sleep a night are most at risk for the weight-related struggles that correlate to not getting a good night’s sleep. The scientific reasons behind this are found in two important hormones: ghrelin and leptin. When you don’t get enough sleep, your body produces more ghrelin, which tells your brain that you’re hungry, and less leptin, which tells your brain that you’re full. As a result, people who don’t get enough sleep are more likely to overeat. Eight hours of sleep or more is also critical in reducing your levels of the stress hormone, cortisol. Too much cortisol is what makes your body hold onto stubborn thigh and stomach fat.
Healthy sleep habits, on the other hand, promote physical healing, boost your resting metabolism, and maintains the proper balance of weight-related hormones in your body. Most people can improve their sleep quality by making a few simple changes to their nightly routine. Try sticking to a sleep schedule, which means going to bed and waking up at the same time every day. Nightly meditation practice and other sleep rituals that incorporate mindfulness are excellent tools for anyone who has trouble falling asleep due to stress. Refraining from midnight snacking can also have a beneficial effect on your ability to fall and stay asleep. And lastly, avoid those things that can keep you from having a good night’s rest, like caffeine, alcohol, and too much screen time after dark.
Real talk; with the summer just a few weeks away, it may be too ambitious to get your whole body exactly where you want it by the time the temperature soars. However, if you focus all your energy on one area, you can make a significant difference in a short amount of time. Bodybuilders do this as a regular part of their training because it’s an effective way of seeing results where you want them most, which less effort than it takes to do a full-body workout. Want to show off toned shoulders and lean arms in short sleeves? Focus on upper body workouts. Is stubborn thigh fat preventing you from wearing shorts with confidence? Target those areas with a rigorous squat and lunge workout. There’s a solution for every problem area—even if you want to do an ab workout while sitting at your desk.
Thanks to advancements in medical aesthetics technology, it’s now possible to comfortably reduce fat, diminish cellulite, and tighten skin. Venus Bliss™ fat treatments, for example, uses targeted energy to gently dissolve hard-to-budge fat cells that tend to accumulate on abdomen. This fat reduction solution is non-invasive and suitable for all skin types, with no downtime. Best of all, many people see visible results after just one session, which generally lasts around 30 minutes. The device also offers complementary skin tightening and cellulite reduction treatments use a proprietary combination of energies to boost collagen and elastin fibers—essential components for strengthening the connective tissue that keeps lax skin and cellulite at bay.
A qualified treatment provider will be able to offer you a treatment plan that addresses your most pressing concerns, such as targeted fat treatments , cellulite reduction, or skin tightening. These specialized, non-surgical treatments give you an overall slimmer appearance in about the time it takes to cook dinner, making them the perfect option for people with busy lifestyles who want to achieve their body goals before summer. They’re also an excellent choice for anyone who has tried diet and exercise but still has a few stubborn areas that they want to see perfected.