First of all, let’s get one thing straight: every body is a beach body, and feeling comfortable in your skin comes from the inside. No one can or should tell you to lose weight. If you like how you feel and look that is all that matters because beauty isn’t dictated by some number you see on a scale. You’re perfect as long as you are happy with yourself.
However, if you’re not happy with yourself… it shows. It’s about the way you carry yourself, shoulders slumped, avoiding eye contact, just generally hoping you don’t attract attention. Most of us have gone through something like that or are still going through it.
Lack of confidence, whether it’s about what you perceive as a physical flaw or a mental one, can cause a lot of damage on the rest of your life. Talking about accepting and loving yourself is one thing, but actually doing it? Now, that can be extremely hard. You can end up loving pieces of yourself, but not yourself as a whole.
What can you do then?
Work on it. Just work on fixing whatever you wish was different, because sometimes, even if you don’t achieve some ideal (often unrealistic) goal about yourself, in the process you will learn to love exactly who you are.
So, while we think you’re beautiful as you are, we know that most of you still want to work on improving various aspects of yourself — whether that’s achieving peace of mind, sleeping more soundly, or losing a few extra pounds. We’re here to help you reach your goals!
Take a look at our top 5 tips for some last-minute weight loss:
Eat the right foods
First and foremost: be mindful of how you fuel your body.
In preparation for the bikini season, you’ll want to have plenty of foods that are high in fibre and protein, but low in fat and sugars. The top picks for a last-minute weight loss diet include leafy greens, light soups, fish, and nuts. Even though it may be difficult (and more importantly, not very healthy) to keep a long-term diet including only the foods mentioned above, if you’re set on last-minute weight loss before hitting the beach, a few days of eating clean and sticking to these foods can help you flatten your belly.
Stop the bloat
Strive to eat the foods that suppress bloating, and of course -- avoid the ones that cause it.
Foods you should avoid if you want to null the puffiness and have a flat belly include beans, wheat, dairy, onions, carbonated drinks, and beer.
If you’re prone to bloating even when avoiding all of the above, you’ll want to combat this by including fruits like pineapple, papaya, and bananas into your summer diet -- mix them up into a breakfast smoothie (avoid adding dairy products, though -- you might get the opposite of the desired results if you do), or simply have these vitamin-filled goodies as a snack once a day.
Extra pro tip: eat slowly. When you eat too fast, air can get trapped in the food you’re chewing, and when you end up swallowing it, it will cause air buildup in your belly -- making you bloated.
Cardio, cardio, cardio
If you’re looking for the best type of exercise to tone your body before beach time, cardio is the answer.
The recommended amount of cardio for weight loss is 30 to 45 minutes three or four times a week; but if you don’t have weeks before hitting the beach, a different tempo can also garner some last-minute results. The best last-minute cardio practices include:
- Quality over quantity: focus on the quality of your cardio -- if you’re too tired or sore, your body won’t be able to perform optimally. This is why it’s important to take some time to rest and relax. Another trick is to stretch your muscles well before and after every workout.
- Alternate between high-intensity and low-intensity workouts: this will maximize the fat burn in a short period of time. Experts’ recommendation for the fastest fat burn is alternating two and a half minutes of high and low intensity cardio workouts.
- Push harder but shorter: long-distance workouts are generally the healthier way to go for long-term weight loss, but if you’re trying to get the most out of your last-minute workouts, you should push harder for shorter periods of time.
Say no to your guilty pleasures.
No more guilty pleasures, at least for a while! No junk food, no soda, no greasy food. It’s time to start making healthier choices when it comes to snacks or takeout food! Sure, everyone says allowing yourself a cheat day without feeling regret about it, is also a healthy thing to do, once in a while — but that only works when we’re talking about the long run. If you’re trying to change your lifestyle into a healthier one, you can still keep your guilty pleasures and enjoy them every once in a while — it’s good for the heart! However, since you’re trying to do some last minute bikini prep, you need to avoid certain guilty pleasures. Kick out the following things from your lifestyle: no more bread or pasta; lessen your gluten intake (as much as you can!); no soda, cocktails, beer, or similar drinks; no sweets (for hardcore cravings, eat a piece of dark chocolate); eat your breakfast (whether it’s a bowl of oatmeal or a smoothie). And remember, eat breakfast! It’s a super important meal, and if you eat the right things, it can make a big difference on the rest of your day (and your weight loss!). Make sure you check out our blog on 3 breakfast tips that will help you lose weight.
Time to level up your hydration game.
Water, water, water! The secret weapon for way too many areas of your health. Honestly, you probably don’t even know how much benefit hydration can have on your fitness goals or just how much impact hitting your perfect water intake goal can have on your beauty and wellness. All in all, water is amazing — when you’re drinking enough of it! Forgetting to drink enough water happens to most people. We end up drinking when we’re thirsty and think that that’s surely good enough for us, if it’s our body telling us to drink, right? Wrong. When your body alerts you that you’re thirsty, it means it’s already becoming dehydrated, which is not good. Drinking enough water will help you with your weight loss by making you feel fuller, and giving your body the much needed hydration, especially after exercising. In case you struggle with water intake, make sure you give our smart water bottle, Spring, a try this summer!
We hope these tips help you get the most out of your weight loss plans for the summer! Remember that the only person that should inspire you to make a change in your lifestyle is you. If you’re doing this for anyone else you’ll eventually lose the motivation and quickly fall back to old habits.
Make sure you’re doing this for the right reasons and be patient with yourself!