Anyone else have grand plans to start a fitness regimen for summer vacation?
We were supposed to start in May, but we pushed it back to June, then to July. And now, with summer vacation just six weeks away, she really wants to get fired up. (By the way, I’m planning a good old family trip to Portugal)
My problem is that I’m starting with a very unrealistic fitness plan. My plan includes marathon-style running, weight-lifting sessions only bodybuilders can do, and hitting the gym at 6 a.m. This never happens when you wake up three times a night to feed your baby!
That’s why we’ve put together some simple health and fitness tips to help you feel more confident in your body at the beach this summer. The most important thing about these health tips is that they are achievable, so you can stick to them for more than two days before giving up!
Always get a good night’s sleep
We’ll start simple here, but never underestimate the power of a good night’s sleep. Not only is it important to sleep for 8 hours, but how you wake up is also very important. It’s best to wake up between 6am and 8:30am and stick to a regular wake-up time.
Recent research has investigated something called the cortisol awakening response (CAR). They found that the better your CAR, the more energy you have and the more likely you are to exercise.
Learn more about CAR here: Wake up early to boost your fitness and health
There are many studies that suggest that it is better to exercise in the morning. Studies say it’s all sorts of technical, but I think it’s simply because you don’t spend your day coming up with excuses not to go to the gym. If you finish early, you can spend the whole day feeling smug.
More information: Morning exercise may help you sleep (back to point 1)
Take the 10,000 steps a day challenge
According to this article from Livestrong, walking 5 miles (about 10,000 steps) can burn up to 500 calories per day. I do this almost every day, and 10,000 steps quickly became part of my regular routine. Having a dog definitely helps!
The 10,000 Step Challenge is a good place to start if you hate exercise or want a low-impact workout.
Read more: I recently reviewed the Milestone Activity Tracker for my 10,000 Step Challenge.
Do a “10 minute workout
I’m a big fan of the 10-minute home DVD workout. I like it because it’s very short and effective.
Also, you can’t trick yourself into training by thinking, “It’s only 10 minutes, 10 minutes will do the trick!” But 9 times out of 10, you end up enjoying that 10 minutes and repeat another 10 minutes, then another, until your 30-minute workout is complete. The price is also cheap!
10 minute solution – check out our body blaster collection
Or, if you just want one DVD, start with “The 10-Minute Solution: Blast Belly Fat.
make gym friends
When you go to the gym, it’s okay if you and your gym mates do completely different things. The point of gym buddies is to increase your motivation to go to the gym. You don’t want to disappoint your gym buddies or become a dropout.
I had a hard time finding gym mates, so I started going to morning spin classes. After taking a few classes, I started making friends and now my entire class is full of gym buddies.
I don’t drink anything except tea/coffee and water
The easiest way to reduce calories is to reduce liquid calories. Drink as much water as possible, as fruit juices, soda, and alcohol are full of empty calories that don’t do you any good. For most of us, it’s unrealistic to abstain from tea or coffee, so we drink it black or with a little milk.
It may also be unrealistic to cut out alcohol, so save it for weekends or special occasions.
cut out the sauce
Another thing that’s easy to cut out of your diet are high-calorie sources. You’ll quickly get used to eating your meals without smothering them in mayonnaise or other rich, sweet, or creamy sauces. We often prepare a healthy meal and smother it with calorie-dense sauces.
Read more: 5 Healthy Salad Dressings and Sauces You’ll Love (Vegan, Gluten-Free, Oil-Free)
meal planning and preparation
When it comes to food, they start out with good intentions, but as soon as they get hungry, they eat whatever their greedy little hands can get their hands on. If I was hungry and there was no “real food” in the house, I’d happily laugh off half a loaf of bread with Nutella, three packs of potato chips, half an ice cream, and a bowl of Clancy. Nut cornflakes.
But if I had a pre-prepared salad in the fridge, or at least the ingredients to make one, I would have happily eaten it too!
While it’s unrealistic to say you don’t have any snacks at home, make sure you eat healthy or pre-made meals so you don’t have to eat a lot of unnecessary food because you’re hungry. Please. The healthiest people I know cook extensively on Sunday and prepare all of their meals for the week.
Top tip: Pinterest is a great place to find healthy snacks. He came across the idea on Pinterest to chop up bananas, dip them in chocolate and freeze them it’s delicious! A great dessert with far fewer calories than regular sticky toffee pudding!
Do you have any tips for becoming healthier more easily?