If you’re lounging on your couch with a potato chip midway to your mouth, reading that headline in fear, let me assure you that you have nothing to worry about. That statement is not intended to instill fear, but rather to inspire you to start getting fit now so that you can have the body you want by summer.
As the days start getting longer and warmer, with the official start of summer only a little over a month away, you’ve surely heard talk of people expressing concern about fitting into their swimsuits and achieving the perfect beach body. Most people, when nervous about something, shrink away from it rather than attacking it at the root. Don’t abandon your fitness goals just because they seem impossible to achieve. If you put in the work and follow this eight-week workout plan, you can have the body you want this summer. And yes, by work, I mean working out. Dieting alone won’t cut it. However, if you acknowledge upfront that your goals are going to take some work, it makes them more approachable. Plus, you can rest assured that if you take these steps seriously, you’ll be rewarded in the end for all your hard work.
Before diving into the fitness part of this plan, you’ll need to take some time identifying your goals and developing a nutrition plan. Figure out why you want to achieve these goals, exactly how much weight you want to lose or muscle you want to gain, and break your goals down by week.
Then, if you want to make sure your diet compliments your fitness goals, keep tabs not just on what you’re eating, but how much and how often. It’s easy to avoid overeating if you practice time-restricted feeding (TRF). TRF may sound a little intimidating, but it’s not about starving yourself, but rather keeping all of your eating within a specified window of time. You should try to keep your three main meals of the day within a 6-8 hour time frame, meaning if you eat breakfast at 9am, you should have your last meal of the day no later than 5pm. If you get hungry outside of this timeframe, you can always have light, healthy snacks to tide you over.
Portion control is another key consideration; make sure you’re consuming the right amounts of protein, healthy fats, vegetables, and smart carbs. Your daily protein intake should be roughly the size of your palm, healthy fats should be no more than the size of your thumb, limit yourself to one smart carb (like sweet potatoes, brown rice, or quinoa) per day, and eat as many vegetables as you’d like.
The third and most important step in your journey to getting fit in time for beach season is an eight-week fitness plan. Not everyone has the same abilities, so only take on what you can manage. In general though, start small and work your way up to a more rigorous routine. Each week should incorporate both cardio and weight training. How often you workout will depend upon how much you can handle, but aim for 20-30 minutes of aerobic exercise at least three times a week. In your first week, aim for two full-body workouts separated by a cardio day. As you progress in your training, ramp up the intensity. Try 45 minutes of cardio starting in the third week and gradually increase the weights in your full-body workout.
That’s it! If you work hard to stick to your fitness goals for eight weeks, there’s nothing keeping you from flaunting a toned, muscular body on the beach. For a more detailed breakdown of the exercises you can do in your workout sessions, visit the original blog on BioTRUST.com.