GET­TING YOUR BODY beach ready

Get­ting your body ready for bikini sea­son can take some hard work and ded­i­ca­tion, but don’t panic writes TASHA WALL, be­cause it can be done and doesn’t have to feel like tor­ture in the process.

New Zealand Fitness - - IN THIS ISSUE - By Tasha Wall

We all want more than any­thing to have a beau­ti­ful body that we can feel con­fi­dent in when we hit the beach. Here are my top ten tips on achiev­ing a body worth show­ing off this sum­mer!

Set a goal and then break it down into steps.

Set­ting a big goal for your­self can seem un­achiev­able and over­whelm­ing un­til you break it down into steps. Los­ing 5kg sounds a lot eas­ier then los­ing 20kg. So set your goal and then de­cide what you will need to do each month, week and even day in or­der to get there. For ex­am­ple: I want to lose 5kg this month, so my goal is to get to the gym six times this week and make sure that each day I have my lunch and snacks packed for work. While we all want to see phys­i­cal re­sults, don’t for­get that the most im­por­tant thing is how you’ll feel once you achieve the body you want so fo­cus on that. How do you want to FEEL when you get to your goal – strong, con­fi­dent and beau­ti­ful?


Make a plan for pos­si­ble set­backs.

If you have tried and failed in the past, what have the rea­sons for this been? Emo­tional eating, night-time munch­ing, too much din­ing out, no time. Make a so­lu­tion for what you will do when these events oc­cur. How else can you cope with your emo­tions with­out food? What can you do at night when you get bored and reach for the chips? Where can you dine out that will have a healthy al­ter­na­tive? Maybe aim for 20 min­utes of ex­er­cise on the days you don’t have time. Hav­ing a plan ahead of time will pre­vent you from fall­ing off the wagon.


Cre­ate ac­count­abil­ity for your progress.

If you know what you want and when you want it and there are real con­se­quences for not fol­low­ing through, you’ll be more likely to con­tinue to­ward your goal. Find a friend, fam­ily mem­ber or per­sonal trainer to report your progress to, sign up for a boot-camp or group fit­ness class, sched­ule a time with a work­out buddy or join a weight loss com­pe­ti­tion. There are many op­tions out there – it’s just about find­ing what will mo­ti­vate you the most.


Eat clean and don’t crash diet. When it comes to food, your nu­tri­tion will be a di­rect re­flec­tion of how you look and feel in your bathing suit. Fo­cus on eating six small meals a day, con­sist­ing of com­plex carbs and lean pro­teins. You don’t need to live off meal re­place­ment shakes to get re­sults. Cut out pro­cessed and deep fried food, keep condi­ments to a min­i­mum and eat plenty of greens.


Pre­pare your meals ahead of time.

Take the time to pack your lunches and snacks at the be­gin­ning of the week. De­pend­ing on how busy your sched­ule looks, you may need to pre­pare your meals for the en­tire work­ing week. You will find it much eas­ier to stick to your meal plan if healthy op­tions are ready and avail­able to you. This will pre­vent din­ing out and grab­bing greasy fast food on the fly.


Chal­lenge your body.

Your body even­tu­ally adapts to your ex­er­cise, so it’s im­por­tant to switch things up and chal­lenge your­self. Each week you should be able to in­crease ei­ther your time or your in­ten­sity of your ex­er­cise. A con­stant mix­ture of a va­ri­ety of dif­fer­ent ac­tiv­i­ties will pre­vent that stub­born plateau. Use a combo of ma­chines, dumb­bells and out­door ac­tiv­i­ties so you don’t get bored.


Have grat­i­tude.

Strive to be bet­ter but don’t for­get to be grate­ful for the body you al­ready have. The per­fect body isn’t the key to hap­pi­ness, but liv­ing a healthy life­style is cer­tainly a ma­jor piece of the puz­zle. In­stead of fo­cus­ing on your flaws, find a rea­son why you are grate­ful for them. If you don’t like your arms, think of how they al­low you to carry things and com­plete daily tasks. If you hate your thighs, re­mem­ber how they take you where you need to be through­out the day. Make a list of all the things in your life that bring you hap­pi­ness and then make goals for in­cor­po­rat­ing these things into your life as of­ten as you feel suit­able. Weight loss is not the only goal – hap­pi­ness is the real goal.


Be con­sis­tent.

If you mess up and you will – it’s not the end of the world. If you make one bad choice, it won’t kill you, just make the next one bet­ter in­stead of let­ting it turn into a whole week­end free for all. So ditch the all or noth­ing at­ti­tude and find a healthy bal­ance of fun and fit­ness that’s re­al­is­tic and main­tain­able with you and your life­style. You don’t need to be per­fect; just try to do some­thing bet­ter each day and don’t EVER give up, not even for a sec­ond!


Food jour­nal.

Record­ing what you eat will help you to be more con­scious of what you are putting in your mouth. Some­times you don’t re­al­ize how much mind­less snack­ing you are do­ing un­til you start jour­nalling it. You can write it out by hand or down­load an app that will help you to track your work­outs and nu­tri­tion. This way if you are not mak­ing as much progress as you would like, you can look back on the week or month to see what may have been the cause.


Do a purge.

Clean out your pantry and get rid of all the snacks you used to over in­dulge in. If you end up want­ing a treat, you will need to walk or drive to the store to get it. You can try re­plac­ing your snacks with other lower calo­rie items. Try mak­ing your own pop­corn with­out but­ter or switch­ing chips to rice crack­ers. I love keep­ing sugar snap peas in the fridge for when I want to munch on some­thing sweet and I also have fresh chopped veg­gies ready and avail­able at all times.

You don’t need to be per­fect; just try to do some­thing bet­ter each day and don’t ever give up, not even for a sec­ond!

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