Get in Shape for Summer!

May-Denise-Austin-Photo

May is one of my favorite months of the year – do you know why? It’s National Fitness Month! Which means it is time for everyone to focus on being healthy, happy AND fit! I want your goal for May to be to get out there and move around more. You’ll feel better about yourself when you’re active – and confidence is your best accessory! Follow these tips to get moving this month – and you’ll be ready for summer in no time!

Build yourself some muscle. Strength training is absolutely necessary for a more toned look. Investing in a pair of dumbbells is a great idea. Start with three or five pounds, and try a few exercises from my website to help you become familiar with using them. You should also try moves that multitask—like lunges or squats, which work your core muscles and your legs at the same time. If you want to look more toned for a special occasion or a trip to the beach, schedule a strength training session a few hours before the big event. Strength training temporarily increases blood flow to the areas worked, so you’ll find that you look tighter right after a workout.

Move as much as you can. Everyone is so busy these days, I know it’s hard to find time to fit in exercise. I want you to try to find at least 10 or 20 minutes somewhere! Start by cutting back on screen time—shut down the computer and shut off the TV. Use that free time for a walk, dancing in your living room, or bicycling around the neighborhood. If you absolutely can’t miss a favorite TV show, get up off the couch and work out while you watch—you can lift weights or do a fitness band workout while you catch up on your favorite show. Another great tip: Skip the elevators and escalators and take the stairs instead!

Circuit train. If you’re short on time (and who isn’t?), circuit training is a great way to get results fast. You combine a series of challenging weight-training exercises with short bursts of high-intensity cardio—for instance, a set of tricep dips, followed by a minute of high-intensity jump roping. Research has shown that this kind of high-intensity interval training (also referred to as HIIT) can help you burn fat and improve your cardio health much faster than a longer, but slower workout —which means that you’ll see results a lot faster, too!

Spice up your routine! We all have to find new ways to challenge our bodies to avoid a weight-loss plateau. A fitness makeover is simple and fun – you just have to be a little bit creative. Sign up for a class at your gym or local recreation center. Try a new DVD like my Burn Fat Fast Latin Dance – it’s an exhilarating 30-minute workout consisting of four mini-routines designed to torch calories, define your waist and sculpt muscles. Hit the dance floor on a night out with your spouse! The possibilities are endless – here are a few more ideas.

Eat your way to a better body. Gradually try to eat less and less salt. If you can go 21 days without salty foods, your taste buds will change you probably won’t miss it anymore! Also, try to stick with a healthy diet, loaded with fruits and vegetables, lean proteins and whole grains. Drinking lots of water, or even eating water-filled produce, like cucumbers, watermelon and lettuce can help your body flush away retained fluid. (It sounds counterintuitive, but it works!) It’ll help you look bathing suit ready in no time flat!

Written for Rite Aid by DeniseAustin.com