Get Fit for Summer - 5 Tips to Stick to a Fitness Plan

Summer is exactly 3 months away. As we start getting our backyards and outdoor rooms ready for outdoor entertaining, we should seriously start considering getting ourselves ready for days spent in bikinis and nights in flirty summer dresses. Here are 5 tips for making a fitness plan, sticking to it and ensuring your body is as ready to go for summer as your backyard is:

Set specific goals. Take a measurement of your basic features (waist, hips, and chest) as well as weight, resting heart rate and how many pushups and sit ups you can do in 30 seconds and set out to improve these “stats.” Decide on an ultimate goal, but set up smaller ones along the way to make it seem less daunting and reward yourself for reaching them. For example, in an effort to improve your diet, try giving up buying coffee in the morning for a week and buying yourself a non-food treat with the money you save.
Create workouts you enjoy. Your exercise regimen will never be more than torture if you can’t stand the activities you’re doing. You don’t have to spend hours in a gym to get a good workout. Dancing, hiking, playing basketball, kayaking, surfing and playing wii all burn calories while you’re having fun. Grab a friend for a power walk around your neighborhood and chose a grassy spot to do some resistance training like sit ups and pushups or even join the kids at the playground. With the weather warming up for spring and summer, the outdoor opportunities are endless.

Exercise at the same time every day. If you put fitness into your routine, you won’t feel like you’re missing anything. If you make even 30 minutes a day to run, go to the gym or even do some jumping jacks and dance around in the living room, soon it will be a part of your day you won’t want to miss. Consider waking up an hour earlier, forgoing an episode of CSI until the weekend or going with a friend on a jog instead of going to happy hour.

Calculate your BMR. Your BMR (or Basal Metabolic Rate) is the number of calories your body burns when functioning normally. Once you know this number, you can plan your caloric intake accordingly. To lose weight, you must intake fewer calories than you burn and vice versa if you are trying to gain weight. Determine if you are at a healthy weight by calculating your BMI (Basal Metabolic Index); this number indicates whether your ratio of height to weight is optimal based on medical research.

Fit fitness in. There are hundreds of ways to fit just a little more exercise into your daily activities. Things like parking farther away, going on a walk during your lunch break, sitting on a yoga ball instead of an office chair at work or taking the stairs are quick and easy ways to burn just a few more calories a day without spending hours in the gym.

So right now, on March 21, there are still 3 whole months until the official first day of summer. That is plenty to time to get your yard and your rear ready for poolside barbecues and long beach days.

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