As the sun is beginning to show face again and I slowly emerge from my winter hibernation, I am becoming increasingly aware of my extra winter padding. So, keen to get my bikini body back (and dreaming of lazy beach missions languishing in the sultry sun), I dug a little deeper into what works to lose weight fast before summer (without having to resort to starvation). It all comes down to the right exercise and smart eating habits.
A great way to kick-start your weight loss goals is with a set plan.
Let’s start with exercising
I admit I struggle to find the motivation to hit the gym and to follow a consistent exercise regime (I’ve never been super sporty either). A gentle jog now and then and a few simple exercises pretty much sum up my efforts. However, with a weight-loss goal, I am hyped to start exercising properly. For me, exercising is also about feeling good about myself. I am always blown away by how good I feel when I do actually get moving (you gotta get those endorphins).
Thanks to a recent study conducted by the world-renowned Mayo Clinic in Minnesota on 39 common exercise, where the number of kilojoules burned during an hour of each exercise was calculated, we have more insight into what type of exercise is great for weight-loss. Based on their research, here are a bunch of crazy cool exercises out there, that will slim you down in no time:
First up, let’s look to Korean martial art for guidance. With emphasis on sky-high kicks, combined with a wide range of jumping and spinning kicks, Taekwondo involves a lot of moving around and burns a whopping 3146-3920 kilojoules per hour. Now this is definitely a must-try.
Let’s get swimming, swimming, swimming…
A vigorous swimming session can burn up to 2992-3732 kilojoules per hour. Swimming works wonders for the entire body, keeping all your muscles tight and toned. Best of all, there is nothing more refreshing than diving into a cool swimming pool on a hot day (and you don’t even feel like you are breaking a sweat).
“I’ve gotta brand new pair of roller-blades…”
It’s time to roll our way back to our childhood and shed that extra-weight through rollerblading. A fun summer activity with the gals, an hour of rollerblading can burn up to 2293-2858 kilojoules and is a great way to tone those leg muscles and glutes.
It’s in the weights
I was truly amazed to hear that a session with weights can burn calories even hours after your workout!
With a set workout layed out for you, there are many fitness channels that burn those calories fast and furiously. These workouts incorporate exercises known to ensure weight loss, such as lunges, burpees, squats, mountain climbers to name a few. All I can say is that I went on a subscribing spree and I was keen to find out which ones suited me best. Here are my top three Youtube channels for great workouts to get me feeling fit and fabulous for summer:
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With a wide range of free full-length workout videos to choose from, Fitness Blender has a great fat-burning 37-minute cardio workout that is a definite must-try. Set against a clean white background, I found these workout programmes clear and easy to follow. Indicated on the right-hand side of the video, there is also a count of the amount of calories burned throughout the workout.
Where you can work out alongside top fitness experts and Hollywood’s favourite celebrity trainers, this Female Fitness Youtube channel offers do-it-along-with-us-real-time tutorials, workouts and exercises that help you achieve your healthy living and weight loss goals. Check out POPSUGAR Fitness 20-minute Victoria Sport Workout For Toned Abs and Legs.
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What can I say, Kayla Itsines really knows how to break the sweat and get your body in shape. Check out her 28-minute calorie-burning full body workout, which is super easy to follow.
We are what we eat
Hand-in-hand with exercise, shedding weight is also about eating the right food at the right time. Although it’s not necessarily a question of eating less, (food should obviously be consumed in moderation), our diet should be planned around three small meals per day, with healthy snacks in between. This is also where breakfast comes in (its named break the fast for a reason). It’s so easy to give breakfast a miss, especially when we are in a rush to get to work. However, skipping breakfast slows down the metabolic rate and therefore our bodies’ ability to burn fat.
It’s super important that we say “no” to junk food and sugar and “yes” to veggies and healthy alternatives. With this in mind, including fresh and wholesome foods with detoxifying properties is a great way to shed that winter layer of fat. Incorporate watercress, lemon, dark green leafy veggies, fresh fruit, cabbage, artichoke, beets, ginger and garlic, green tea and whole grains into your meal plan and let your body soak up their goodness.
Superfoods are also the in-thing when it comes to losing weight. Jam-packed with antioxidants, vitamins, minerals and good fats, these low cal foods should be in your fridge before we can say summer:
- Apples and blueberries and broccoli – for the love of antioxidants and fibre.
- Oats – to fuel your day with fibrous goodness, while burning fat at the same time.
- Avocado – this creamy deliciousness, packed with oleic fats, sorts out those nasty fat cells and keeps you feeling full for longer.
- Salmon – a great source of the good fats (omega 3) to build muscle and reduce that belly roll.
- Eggs – this energy booster is a miracle worker when it comes to increasing your metabolic rate.
- Brown rice – the perfect staple: high in fibre, low in calories.
- Lentils – nicknames “the belly flattener”, lentils stops your body producing excess fat.
- Goji berries – for those essential amino acids.
- Cacao – rich in antioxidant flavonoids and essential fatty acids, a warrior when it comes to fighting bad cholesterol.
How have you shed that winter weight? I’d like to know. Feel free to drop a comment below.