Don’t succumb to the seasonal body

Now that it’s spring, we’re all looking to the warm weather ahead. For many this means getting ready to don a bathing suit. Google “bikini workout” and Fitness magazine, Self and Women’s Health all come up on the first page with exercise plans that promise to get you swimwear ready. I have to be honest and say that I’m not a big fan of all this hype. While I wholly believe that there is always room for improvement (within moderation, of course), I don’t think that the prospect of wearing a bikini or a one-piece should serve as motivation (or at least sole motivation) to eat well and exercise. What about the other seven to nine months of the year? What’s going to keep you motivated then? Plus some of us aren’t built for a string bikini (I’m one of them) and will never look like Miranda Kerr. Not only are you setting incredibly high expectations for yourself mentally and physically, you’re probably setting your sights on something unrealistic.

As I’ve always said, health and fitness has to a way of life not something you buy into spring to fall. If working out in preparation for skimpy summer clothing gets you started down the path to living a healthier life, by all means start there. But, yo-yoing between working hard to look great during the summer and letting yourself go during the winter is not only ineffective, it can be damaging long-term. It’s tough to lose weight no matter how or how fast you do it. Trying to lose weight plus tone up in a short amount of time is pretty tortuous. You have to really cut back your calorie intake and ramp up your workouts. If you take really good care of yourself year round, you’d only have to focus on say intensifying your ab routine or adding in extra sets of squats (depending on what area you want to tighten up). Picking nutritional foods and staying active, will keep you bikini-ready all the time, not just during the summer months. Isn’t round-the-clock confidence better than confidence that comes and goes with the change of seasons?

Below are a few of the moves I like to incorporate this time of year to ensure that I look and feel my best in shorts, tank tops, and yes, a bikini.

Total body

Self’s Hot-Body Bop (or burpee). This exercise is great for your shoulders, abs, back, butt and thighs. You hit quite a few major muscle groups and rev up your heart rate at the same time. Great for torching extra calories and increasing definition!

Shoulders

Superman (and variations of the traditional move).

Check out FitSugar’s shoulder sculpting moves at www.fitsugar.com/Get-Strapless-Dress-Ready-Shoulder-Sculpting-Moves-2989136?page=0,0,0

Abs

Shape’s Plank Jack

A

Get in modified plank position, balancing on your forearms (elbows aligned under shoulders) and toes. Tighten abs so body is straight from head to heels.

B

Keeping torso tight, hop feet out wide. Hop feet back to starting position and repeat. Do 15 reps.

Also, check out this Pushup into Rotating Side Plank. This is one I will definitely be trying!

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