By Tina Haupert
Now that spring is right around the corner, it’s time to start thinking about bathing suit season.
Did you just freak out a little? There’s no need to worry about slipping into a swimsuit if you do a little pre-summer planning to get yourself bikini-ready. I promise it’ll be stress-free! If you start incorporating these easy tips and tricks into your everyday life now, you’ll look and feel great in your bathing suit when summer officially arrives. Most of them will fit right into your current healthy habits…so what are you waiting for?
Set a goal
Whether you want to lose a few pounds, perk up your butt, or tone up all over, figuring out what you want to accomplish is the first step. Once you commit to a goal (like, “I want to lose 10 pounds by June”), break it into smaller, more manageable pieces, so you can work toward it on a weekly and daily basis (think: “I want to lose 1 pound per week”) and achieve it just in time for summer.
Incorporate more fresh produce into your meals
Are you still eating (and drinking) like it’s hibernation season? Now is the time to lighten up your meals with fresh produce. When making a meal or prepping a snack, think 50/50. Aim to have fruits and veggies fill about half your plate, and a combination of lean protein and healthy fats make up the other half. All of the brightly colored produce will fill you up (thanks, fiber!) and pack a ton of nutrients into your diet for not a lot of calories.
Hydrate, hydrate, hydrate
Drinking water is an awesome habit to start now since it makes your skin glow, fills you up, and can help reduce the appearance of cellulite. Instead of drinking soda or juice, add lemon and cucumber slices or frozen berries to your water. It adds some subtle flavor and vibrant color to your water, which will encourage you to drink more throughout the day.
Recruit a workout buddy
Shaping up for summer is definitely more fun with a friend—or even a group of friends! Find a buddy to exercise with you and nail down when and where you’ll work out each week to help you guys stick with it. Having this kind of support will help keep you motivated so you both achieve your goals.
Set a reminder to update your playlist
Music is a great motivator, but your workout tunes can get old quick. Set a reminder (on your phone, computer, or calendar) to update your playlist every two weeks to help keep up the energy level in your workouts from now until summertime. Be sure to keep the tempo fast for a music-induced boost, and add some of your favorite summer hits to remind you of your ultimate goal.
Tack on 5 minutes to your workouts each week
Everyone has an extra 5 minutes, right? Start adding 5 minutes to your workouts right now—whether that means spending extra time on cardio machines or doing another set of strength-training moves. Five minutes might not seem like a game-changer, but if you start now, all of those minutes (and burned calories!) will definitely make a difference.
Do some window shopping
Even if you’re not ready to wear a bikini just yet, you can motivate yourself to shape up by browsing styles online or in-store for a new swimsuit that will both flatter your shape and give you confidence. You can also create a motivational board on Pinterest with images of stylish bathing suits, healthy recipes, and workouts you want to try. This will definitely keep you on track toward your summer shape-up goals!