Summer Fitness Goals

  • While it is ideal to maintain a healthy lifestyle year-round, you can spend the duration of the spring working towards your desired summer body.
  • Committing to at least three exercise sessions a week that combine strength training and cardio can improve your physical appearance, muscle mass, and cardiovascular health.
  • Eating a balanced and colorful diet will bring weight loss and muscle growth, among many other benefits.

Summer is traditionally the season when we spend the most time outdoors, which can deliver many benefits. For example, regular sun exposure can boost your mental wellbeing and help sustain vitamin D levels in the body which is vital to human health.  

 

Because of the warmer weather and increased exposure to daylight, people naturally become more active, which leads to an increase in the frequency of exercise sessions. Summer is also when many people take a well-deserved vacation away from the stress of everyday life. For others, the holidays mean a considerable time spent at the beach. 

 

Those who like to get in shape find the summer season an excellent source of motivation to shed that extra winter weight for a leaner, healthier look. This boosts confidence and reduces body fat and weight, which helps prevent diabetes, high blood pressure, cancer, and other diseases. You should take advantage of the great outdoors and create some personal summer fitness goals.

The Summer Body 

When people hear the term “summer body,” a standard image tends to come to mind. Generally, the summer body look is one that individuals have been working on for some considerable time and are proud to show off the results in public, say at a beach. 

It’s not all just about having a perfect tan; instead, for men and women, it’s about looking toned and not carrying any extra pounds of body fat. For males, this can also include adding extra muscle mass, as this helps to complement the stereotypical ideal summer body.

All individuals who want the summer body look need to know that this is not achieved overnight. Unfortunately, it takes months of hard work and discipline, and many steps need to be taken over a more extended period. While it depends on your body type, one of the best times to kickstart the journey is late winter or early spring with a two-pronged approach. The first step is diet-related, and the other is all about exercise.

Even though your summer fitness goal may feel more short-term, dieting doesn’t mean that you should go ‘cold turkey’ on all the unhealthy foods you love to eat. Instead, focus on a sustainable balance. Regarding your exercise routine, try to include various activities to keep it fun, entertaining, and challenging. 

It is vital to enjoy physical activity, and each person’s exercise regime works best when they add routines that they find interesting. For example, if you like running or weightlifting, this should be a significant part of your weekly physical activity.

Furthermore, you do not have to exercise seven days a week. The body needs some recovery time between workouts to rebuild and grow stronger and leaner. Your muscle fibers need time to recover and repair to increase your muscle mass slowly.

 

What Should Your Meal Plan Consist Of?

There are plenty of different diets in circulation, and the list continues to grow as society becomes more aware of what is and isn’t good for them. This can make choosing a diet plan an absolute minefield. Some ways of eating tend to be fads, while others are risky at best and should be avoided. 

Everyone has their preferences for different foods, so no one particular diet works for all. However, one universal rule applies to nearly everyone—eating a balanced diet that will give you a wide range of vitamins and minerals will help your body flourish. Carbohydrates, protein, and fiber are essential things to consume daily to keep you healthy, as well. 

Unrefined carbohydrate sources such as beans, broccoli, lentils, and whole grains can be vital energy providers. They need to be included in your meal plan; you are at risk for side effects like fatigue that could prevent you from reaching your fitness goals if you don’t have enough of them.

While eating enough healthy foods is an important focus, cutting down on treats with high amounts of fat, sugar, and refined carbohydrates is essential, too. Try replacing typical desserts with similar items made healthier, such as low-sugar protein bars and date balls.

Fish, such as salmon and cod, contain polyunsaturated fats and are low in saturated fats. Omega-3 fatty acids are abundant in oily fish like mackerel. These fats help maintain your cardiovascular health and prevent several health risks. Omega-3 fats also contain anti-inflammatory properties that reduce your risks for various ailments. While all fish contain these nutrients, it is best to avoid farmed fish because they are not fed a natural diet.

Other foods that either help burn fat or build muscle are lean chicken, turkey, tuna, chickpeas, low-fat yogurts, nuts, berries, and green tea. Including these in your diet will ensure an adequate supply of antioxidants in your bloodstream. 

A common misconception associated with losing weight fast is eating as little as possible. This is completely untrue, as it can slow down your metabolism and help you develop nutrient deficiencies – two things that can hurt you long-term. You can still lose weight and burn body fat while eating a healthy, moderate amount of calories daily. 

 

How Long Does It Take to Get in Shape?

A summer body cannot be achieved quickly, and a lot of patience is required for success. Once the winter months are done and your cravings for comfort foods reduce, develop a focused and sustainable eating strategy.

Springtime is great for gently easing into a more active lifestyle that can include running, weight training, yoga, or anything else that lets you burn calories and increase overall muscle mass. This means that individuals can prepare for a “summer body” at any time, although performing healthy habits all year round will help you reap the most benefits. 

Doing this can be especially hard during holidays such as Thanksgiving and Christmas, as overindulging is fairly common during the winter months. However, joining a gym or having your exercise equipment at home can help you keep healthy and fit all year round and give you a head start in achieving your summer fitness goals. 

If you like to let go during the winter months, positive physical results can still be obtained within three months, but only if you stick to a consistent diet and exercise routine.

Becoming fit for the summer season can be seen as creating a new body that individuals are more comfortable in. It is not just about looking good but feeling well, being confident, and staying healthy. Anyone can transform themselves by following the two-prong approach of healthy eating and regular exercise.

In addition to helping you lose weight and build muscle, a balanced diet can make your skin glow, increase your energy, improve your mood, and so much more! Regularly consuming different lean protein sources, vegetables, fruits, healthy fats, and unprocessed carbohydrates will bring your body many nutrients.

If you have a  specific physical look goal, keep in mind the different exercise routines for various body parts and incorporate them into your routine. Find a personal trainer in a local gym or online to guide you through the best exercises that will help you strengthen and develop specific muscles. Try your best to get in a minimum of three one-hour exercise sessions every week to feel and look fantastic.  A mix of strength training and cardio is the ideal combination to help burn fat, as a combination of the two can help speed up your metabolism. 

Exercising at home is a great option for staying in shape! To get started, identify what your health goals are and determine whether strength training or cardio should be your priority. There are many benefits to both options. In fact, combining them would be ideal. Make sure to properly fuel your body.  You can start by following the suggested tips above in regards to healthy eating!

Summary

If you desire to have the ideal summer body this coming year, you can make that happen for yourself. Start as early as you can to give yourself the time to make your progress slow and steady. Rushing the results will only lead to harmful actions and an increased chance of weight gain later. The best way to achieve your summer fitness goals is by engaging in healthy habits daily that are realistic and sustainable.

Scientific Information

  • Unrefined carbohydrates are complex carbohydrate sources that have not been stripped of fiber and nutrients.
  • Saturated fats are fats found in animal-based foods and can cause many cardiovascular problems when overconsumed.
  • Metabolism is the process by which your body converts what you eat and drink into energy. 
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Written by:
Christine VanDoren
Certified Personal Trainer and Nutritionist

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