Summer is here!
It is finally time to break out the swimsuits and enjoy the sunshine and warm weather.
If you’re like me, you kind of dread putting on the bikini for the first time. You are your own worst critic and our society doesn’t help. Everywhere you look on TV and social media you see these 20-30 somethings, rocking their bikini bods, with zero cellulite.
Forget all you see, and focus on how you feel! If you feel great, then go on with your bad self! If you feel you need some improvements in your body composition, your energy, and how you feel… here are some things to look for when you are planning on slimming down for the summer.
Set your goal…
If you goal is to slim down, you should have a reasonable goal.
Most people focus on weight loss and how quickly they can drop the pounds. I see it all the time! “I have lost 20 pounds in 10 days!” That is 2 lbs a day! Studies have shown that a safe amount of weight loss is no more than 2 lbs per week! Yowzah! If you see anything advertising that type of weight loss, my recommendation is to turn around and walk the other way.
If your goal is to trim up then your focus should be FAT loss not weight loss. If you are cutting calories and losing that much weight (more than 2 lbs per week) you are most likely losing muscle by depriving your body of the calories that it needs. This is basically a form of starvation. While this may help you lose the pounds initially, it is impossible to maintain, is not healthy, and it will ultimately backfire by messing up your hormones.
When you focus on FAT loss and not weight loss, you will maintain your muscle tone while slimming down at the same time. If you implement some strength training 2-3 times a week, you will build lean muscle. Why is this important? Muscle has a direct relationship with your metabolism. The more muscle, the better your metabolism and the more calories your burn at rest. On top of burning more calories, you improve your overall health, you get stronger, and you look more tone. Win, win, win!
If you don’t have much to lose and just want to get rid of that extra layer, you may not lose any weight or you may even gain weight on the scale. BUT… you will fit in your clothes better and you will look slimmer.
This is why I always encourage my clients not to weigh themselves and to be sure to take before pictures of themselves. At the end of my program they are always so shocked at how many inches they have lost compared to pounds. On average in 6 weeks they will lose around 6 -8 pounds but 10-13 inches and when we put before and after pics side by side, the difference is amazing!
It is very important to set reasonable goals that you will be able to maintain.
Speaking of maintaining...
Whatever you decide to do to reach your goals should be realistic and something you will be able to maintain as a lifestyle.
So many programs and products push for that “quick fix.” “Loose a ton of weight in X amount of weeks,” “the six week fix,” “the two week cleanse,” “the 60 day challenge.” Then, these programs have you severely cutting calories, or working out 6 days a week, or only drinking shakes all day and having one meal of actual food per day, or all of the above! How realistic is this to maintain for the rest of your life? Not so much!
From a fitness standpoint, you want to work out enough to get results without overdoing it. If you work out too much, you can increase your chance of injury and you can put too much stress on your body. If your body is stressed out you will store fat and not burn fat. My recommendations for workouts are different for each person because not everyone is the same. However, on average this is 2 days of cardio interval training, and 2-3 days of strength workouts. (NOT every.single.day.)
Nutrition. Is. KEY. Not how often you are working out.
Your nutrition influences everything…
Your Energy Levels
How you burn fat
How you gain muscle
How much inflammation you have in your body
Your immune system
Just to name a few!
Finding a nutrition strategy that you can live with for the rest of your life (not just 6 weeks, or whatever) is your first priority. You need to restore balance in your body and allow your body to function like a
Well-oiled, fat burning machine! You also need to be able to enjoy food! Who wants to live the rest of their life freaking out every time you see something you want to eat but CAN’T. Heaven forbid you eat carbs!
A great way to regulate hormones, lose the FAT, and be able to maintain it as a lifestyle is carb-cycling. Basically, carb-cycling uses carb depletion strategies (have you heard of keto?) on cardio and rest days to target fat loss. Then, work in a few higher carb days. These higher carb days are paired with strength workouts so that the carbs you are eating go to your muscle and not to your FAT! Those carbs are working for you, not against you! (cue the heavenly music) You can have your cake and eat it too!! If you want more information on carb-cycling click here.
If this all sounds overwhelming and you don’t even know where to start you are not alone. Reach out to a trainer with a nutrition certification or reach out to me! I have helped hundreds of clients with my online 7-week FAST ATTAINABLE TRANSFORMATION-FAT Loss Program. This program isn’t a quick fix but it is a jump start to a lifestyle change. There is daily support and accountability (by me personally) and there are many tools and options to help you along the way. I walk you through these techniques to maximize your results initially and teach you how to maintain this for life.
I can’t wait to hear from you!