The winter months have come to an end. With that comes the end of baggy sweatshirts, jackets, and sweatpants that cover up the winter months of hibernation and feasting weight. This means that it’s time to get out of the grimy winter body and ready for the more revealing and bright clothing of summer. What a better time than now to get into shape? Here are a few tips to help get yourself into the groove:
Nutrition facts- Believe it or not, cutting calories is not the most important thing when it comes to dieting and looking good for the summer. You should make sure you are cutting the right parts of food out of your diet. Be sure to constantly check the nutrition facts on the food that you eat. “A study published in ‘Food Policy’ in June 2010 found that nutrition labels do affect people’s food choices,” (SFGate). Always know exactly what is going into your body at all times. It is surprising what they sneak into some foods.
Cut the Carbs- “One of the biggest tips I have is to cut your carbohydrate intake,” said Alex Turner from Muscle & Strength Magazine. The average carbohydrate intake for humans per day on a 2,500 calorie diet is close to 300-400 grams of carbs (SFGate foods). Carbohydrates are essential for quick energy. They are the first source of energy the body uses when exercising. By cutting carbohydrates out of diets, the body starts to rely on fats to burn off to use for energy, thus, looking better and cutting weight more rapidly. Not to mention, most foods high in carbohydrates are also high in calories. For this tip I would aim to be under 150 grams of carbs, and under 100 grams if you are looking for a rapid change . Keep in mind if you are eating less of one substance, you should make up by eating different one (preferably protein).
20 minutes a day keeps fat away- “Perform cardio daily, in 20 minute regimens,” said Turner. Running isn’t everyone’s favorite exercise but cardiovascular exercise is crucial in cutting fat, losing weight and it is essential in any healthy lifestyle. Jogging is available to everyone – which is why this exercise is recommended. Jogging 3-4 times a week for 20 minutes will help the body cut. Not to mention, it cuts calories and gives more wiggle room with calorie intake. Any pace is a good pace, just make sure it is consistent and you’re jogging the whole time.
Protein Power- So, no carbs? Watch out for fats? What should I eat? Protein. Protein makes up muscles. Upping the protein intake will make sure the body is maintaining the muscle, and not cutting it. “Going on a high-protein diet may help you tame your hunger which could help you lose weight,” said Elaine Magee from WebMD. Try shooting for your weight in grams of protein. For example, if you were to weigh 120 pounds then you should consume around 120 grams of protein.
You like water? You already like 60% of me…- “Water flushes toxins out of vital organs, carries nutrients to your cells, and provides a moist environment for ear, nose and throat tissues,” said Mayo Clinic. Water is important! Love it. One glass of water before every meal and before you sleep will help increase metabolism. Plus, staying hydrated is a good goal to have as you increase your workout regime. Water has benefits for all different parts of the body so Mayo clinic recommends having around 3 liters of water daily.