The mornings are getting lighter, the air is getting warmer, and the drinks are getting colder. Summer is almost here!.
For many people, this hint of summer will ignite the flame for getting fit. If that sounds like you, then this article has everything you need to get started on the road to summertime fitness.
From setting goals to avoiding soreness, we run you through all you need to do towards getting fit and ready for the beach this summer!.
Set realistic goals
Start by setting realistic goals that give you something to aim for, without overreaching. In other words, forget aspiring to have the body of a fitness model in eight weeks if you are currently a few stones overweight.
If you are just starting a fitness journey, realistic goals may be to lose a stone or be able to run a 5km race or simply feel fitter so you can enjoy playing with your kids in the sun.
You can search for specific workout plans if running a 5km is your goal, but if you want to lose weight you will need to start creating a calorie deficit in your diet.
For example, a realistic weight-loss goal is around 1 to 2 pounds (0.5 to 1kg) per week. To do this, you would need to be in a calorie deficit of around 500 to 1,000 calories each day. If summer is 8 weeks away, then you can realistically lose 8 to 16 pounds!.
Prioritize good nutrition
Whether you want to lose some extra weight or improve your general fitness before the sunny season, eating well is paramount.
As mentioned, determine the number of calories you need to meet your weight goals, then stick to them as closely as possible each day. You can find out your calorie expenditure by seeking out a free calorie calculator online.
A full guide to nutrition goes beyond the scope of this article, but prioritize eating plenty of fresh vegetables and fruit, lean protein (you can eat both meat and fish, or plant-based protein like tofu, tempeh and seitan), and appropriate amounts of healthy fats, and complex carbohydrates.
Carbohydrates are particularly important in your workouts, whether you are running, cycling, or lifting weights. Eat the majority of your carbohydrates in the hours before and after your workouts, then limit them through the rest of the day.
Your specific fitness goal will determine how you exercise. However, everybody will benefit from combining resistance training (lifting weights or using callisthenics) and cardio training, such as running, cycling, swimming, rowing, and dance classes.
Lifting weights has advantages that extend far beyond aesthetics, including reduction of abdominal fat, greater confidence, lower risk of injury, and improved heart health. Everybody, regardless of age or gender, can benefit from resistance training.
Cardio activities can be a great calorie burner, while also strengthening your heart and cardiovascular system. They also have the added benefit of boosting your mood and improving your sleep.
Staying hydrated is important all year round, although, as you start exercising more and the weather gets warmer, hydration becomes critical.
Drink at least 2 litres of water each day, with an additional 500ml to 1 litre for every hour of activity you do.
Be aware that in addition to water, you should replace the electrolytes (including sodium, potassium, and calcium) you lose in sweat.
To do this, you can buy electrolyte powders, tablets or low-calorie sports drinks, while also eating mineral-rich foods, such as avocados, nuts, seeds, pickle juice, coconut water, and broccoli.
Getting fit for summer in a short period of time puts a lot of stress on your body, as well as your mental health. It’s therefore important to recover and recuperate in both body and mind.
Recovery is a vital part of improving athletic performance that’s often overlooked by people who are just starting a regular activity. It may seem beneficial to work out every day, but it’s counterintuitive. Without adequate rest, you risk injury, illness, and fatigue.
Firstly, be sure to engage in stretching to both prepare and relax muscles. Before your workout, it’s best to perform dynamic stretches, and then prioritize static stretching after your workout.
Be aware that it is completely fine to feel soreness after a workout, especially if the exercise is new to you. This is just your body adapting. Don’t let this discourage you!.
If you are suffering from soreness, try rubbing your muscles with our award-winning Relief Balm. This highly-tested balm includes 12 evidence-based natural ingredients, including arnica oil, rosemary oil, and wintergreen oil, that combine to help soothe sore muscles and joints. Click here to explore our Relief Balm
For full-body relief and that ‘aaahhh’ moment after your workout, enjoy a long bath with some of our popular Relief Salts. These recovery-boosting Epsom salts are infused with uplifting essential oils such as frankincense and eucalyptus, with the added recovery properties of hemp seed oil and arnica. Click here to explore our Relief Salts
Putting it all together
Getting fit for summer isn’t complicated, but it will take hard work, dedication and consistency. Set your goals, eat accordingly, hydrate properly, train as required, and then recover well.
The results will not be instant. But keep at it and you WILL see improvements in your weight, fitness, and general health.
Then you can relax and enjoy a nice glass of something cold this summer!. ☀️
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