7 Easy Steps Towards a Great Summer Body
As we approach the end of winter, some of us may have noticed that we put on a few extra pounds. It's easy to hide that extra weight under a thick jacket, but not so easy when you slip on those summer bikinis or a pair shorts and a tee. So what tips do experts recommend when it comes to getting those post-hibernation pounds off? Here are a 7 easy steps towards obtaining a slimmer, sleeker physique by summer.
1 Step: Drink lots of water
It may sound cliche, but water is crucial for weight loss. It's also what we should be consuming 8 times a day. Stop drinking those energy drinks that are loaded with sugar and replace them with a cold glass of water and a green tea capsule for a boost of energy.
Water can also be found in some foods such as fruits, soups, vegetables and beans. When we consume foods with high water content, it is absorbed more slowly by the body, which makes us feel full.
2 Step: Cut down on carbs
Carbohydrates can be good if they are a.) the right kind b.) not consumed close to bedtime. Here are a few of the biggest diet killers that fall under the carb category: jelly and preservatives, bagels, white bread, white rice, french fries, fruit snacks and pizza. All of these comfort foods are loaded with carbohydrates, sugar and fat.
3 Step: Increase activity
Stop sitting on the couch and watching so much TV or playing those addictive video games. Instead get out, get active and burn some energy. A few great exercise options include a 30 minute walk, circuit training, 20 minute jog, weight training and even a Zumba class. The main point is to get active and burn those calories!
Some great ways to burn extra calories is to turn-up any exercise routine with interval training. For those of us who enjoy walking, try to throw in a few bursts of accelerated speed in here and there. This speeds up the heart rate and increases the metabolism.
4 Step: Slow and steady
There are a ton of diets out there for us to choose from, so it's really up to everyone's individual taste. One thing that's universally true for each of us is that we follow a good diet. Another important part of a diet is choosing one that's easy to maintain for the long haul. According to studies shown on sites such as Webmd, those who chose a rapid weight-loss plan are less likely to follow thru than those following a gradual weight-loss plan. The majority of the people who lost weight fast went right back to their old habits later.
5 Step: Mental attitude
Our minds are very powerful and they dictate our behavior and attitude. Having a positive mindset can help us decide whether to give up on a task or make the necessary effort to push through and overcome an obstacle. A negative mindset can kill our ability to reach our goals and leaves us feeling defeated before the battle begins. When it comes to dieting, it's really important to have a good frame of mind. A successful diet depends on how we view our disappointments and challenges.
Another key to achieving our dieting goals is a positive mental attitude. We need to find ways to motivate ourselves during a strict diet. Experts suggest using positive visualization and creating a mental picture of how we want to feel, look and dress once we've achieved our weight loss goals.
6 Step: Get plenty of rest
Some of us don't view sleep as a requirement when it comes to losing weight, but it's very important. When we get less than seven hours of sleep per night it can actually reduce and undo the benefits of dieting. In a recent study, dieters were put on various sleep schedules. The people who received adequate rest saw that half of the weight they lost was from fat. However, the dieters who lacked sleep saw the amount of fat lost was cut in half. Both groups were following the same diet. Getting enough sleep also makes us feel less hungrier and more satisfied after meals.
7 Step: Create support net
Lastly, try to find a great support net whether it be family, friends or an online diet group. It helps us when we have someone to talk to and give us a firm talking to when we feel like giving up. Sometimes all we need to is a few encouraging words to make it through a rough patch.