The weather is getting warmer and the sun is shining so you all know what that means right? Of course, it’s time to kick things up a notch and get yourself into the best shape you possibly can for the summer. Hopefully you didn’t take your “offseason” too far and you maintained a relatively lean physique but in case you didn’t, here are five great tips to get you closer to being in tip top shape for the best season of the year.
Tip #1: Start Doing Cardio
Many of us leave the cardio training alone for the months when we are covered up and piling in the calories to build new muscle over the winter months. Even though that’s not really a great strategy, as regular cardio training will contribute to your ability to train with weights more efficiently and effectively, it happens. So to get things going for yourself it’s highly recommended that you begin a cardio training program with at least 20 minutes per day dedicated to increasing your heart rate and firing up your metabolism to burn calories more efficiently as you make your way towards a leaner physique.
Tip #2: Increase Your Training Intensity
One of the greatest ways to burn additional calories and to have a large energy expenditure every day is to train with crazy intensity. The harder you make your workouts and the more intensity boosting techniques and principles you can include within your training sessions the better. It takes a lot of energy to train with a heightened intensity level and even more to maintain that level for an extended period of time. So make sure you have that component locked in and ready to go every time you hit the weights.
Tip #3: Now Look at Your Diet
Notice how I left this tip to the third spot? This was done on purpose because it will honestly be the most difficult part for you when entering into your summer shredding phase. It’s much easer to start off by changing up the way you train first than it is to change everything at once. If you start doing cardio, start training like a crazy person and start decreasing your calories all at once, it’s just a recipe for disaster especially if you’re new to this. So once you’ve gotten yourself into a good routine training wise, then start looking at your diet plan and adjusting calories as need be. Be careful not to drop your overall calories too much right away as you want to leave room for more decreases later on if need be. The last thing you want to have happen is you get yourself to a point where your maintenance is already too low and you have to starve yourself to lose any more fat.
Tip #4: Increase Your NEAT
NEAT stands for Non-exercise activity thermogenesis. Basically what we’re talking about here is anything you do during the run of your day that burns calories but doesn’t include training or anything else sports related. So you’re looking at activities such as yard work, getting to and from work or school if you walk or bike, going for groceries or just running around after your kids. You need energy to complete all these tasks and the more things you have to get done during your day, the higher your NEAT score will be and the more calories you’ll be burning daily.
Tip #5: Have Fun with the Process
The last thing you need is anymore stress in your life and when it comes to burning fat, stress is definitely the enemy. Heightened levels of cortisol in the body will do you no good when it comes to achieving a lean physique so make sure you are loving the process. Do yourself a favor and put together a plan of action that you will look forward to completing and one that will provide you with great pleasure. Of course you’re going to enjoy the results you’re getting but even then, it gets tough some days to follow through with the plan. If however, you always look forward to the work you have ahead of you, then the journey will become less cumbersome and more attractive to you which in turn will have you sticking with the plan.
It’s time to get yourself into the best shape possible for this summer season so that all of your hard work over the winter months can be enjoyed. Even though summer is right around the corner there’s still time and still an opportunity for you to change things up, try new training and dieting strategies and make your time at the gym more enjoyable. If you’re having a hard time getting started, ask for help from any of our Personal Trainers here at Brickhouse Gym as we can put you on the right path for summer success!
Author: Dana Bushell
Gym Star Team Member