Guilty Pleasure Song. This Is So Summer Material.
Suns out Buns out: a cute, kitschy phrase I’ve put on Facebook the past few years come the first reallllll nice day of spring. This past weekend I hit up Lake Champlain with some friends to bake in the sun. Clearly, I’m the pastiest of the bunch and was in dire need of some vitamin D 😉 Jokes, jokes. Looking back at the photos, I realized how relaxed I was compared to every prior summer when it was time to don a bathing suit. I wouldn’t say I’m a girl who’s in constant battle with her body, but the few insecurities I used to have are beginning to fade away. In the past I used to rely on ‘the girls’ to get me through the summer afternoons. However, boobies are all genetics and nothing to be terribly proud of; it’s not like you gain any size by logging in hours at the gym (if so then I must be getting slipped some mean ‘roids.) Instead, I was confident in my arm muscles that I can thank yoga and sporadic push-ups for. My legs I owe to the beastly hill I have to climb every day, and the many hours a week I spend scurrying around at the Goodwill. And even though my stomach isn’t rock solid, being forced to rid myself of gluten (and with that a lot of processed foods) has eliminated the bloat that used to plague me. It’s a great feeling to see yourself heading in a positive, physical direction because of the work you’ve put in. Your mamma and daddy’s genes will only get you so far.
Ohkay. So, maybe mine aren’t as intense!
And with this change I’ve noticed, I also look at other women in a healthier manner. Instead of being jealous of someone with a naturally thin waist, I’m more apt to go “damnnnnn” when I see a girl who has powerful, sculpted thighs from running up all the hills Burlington has to offer. Or I admire the woman I see in yoga class who has insane back muscles from years of a dedicated Ashtanga practice. That’s not to say it’s bad to be born naturally thin, or naturally flexible, or naturally whatever, but I think there is a lot to be admired about someone who has made changes ranging from minor edits to massive transformation in a healthy and practical way.
The first sunny days are when people start to realize they’ll be spending ample time in minimal clothing—no more winter boots and layers to cover yourself up in– and lot of magazines will be pumping out “Best Summer Body EVER!!!!” articles. Unfortunately, it can be very hard to summon up a healthy mindset in 2 months that will carry you through the summer. A lot of people will immediately try to go from a pizza lifestyle to no refined this, no sugar that, no white anything in one day and burn themselves out before the end of May. Truthfully, this process should take months to let your body slowly adjust to the changes of diet and the added stress of exercising, which will help keep you from falling back into your old habits; I often have to remind myself that it has taken me nearly 15 months to reach this diet high in fruits, vegetables, some meats, and minimally processed foods. However, there are some steps you can take. They might not get your dream body, or best body EVERRR by June, but you’ll be much healthier and you will see changes.
Diet: You know I’m a firm believer in the importance of diet when it comes to how your outsides look.
1.) Start incorporating more fruits and vegetables into your life.
2.) Start a eating a HEALTHY salad 3-5 days out of the week. Check out this older post on the art of salad making.
3.) Start to limit your alcohol intake. Heavy drinkers will be surprised how much weight they’ll lose if they stop hitting the bottle hard on a regular basis
4.) Drink more water! For the most part we’re always in a constant state of dehydration, and we’ll often mistake thirst for hunger!
5.) Limit fruit juice intake, unless it’s freshly squeezed from a juicer. As delicious as fruit juices are, they’re generally packed with lots of added sugars.
1.) If you haven’t exercised in awhile, build up slowly!!!
2.) Start by working out 2-3 times a week. It may seem “pathetic” to not be in the gym ever day, but it will disheartening if you start out saying you’ll go 5 days a week and never making it there.
3.) For the college student, HIIT (high intensity interval training) is a great method because it doesn’t take hours. It involves a mixture of cardio and weight bearing routines, so you’ll be doing double duty.
4.) Make sure you’re giving your muscles adequate time to rest! Aka: don’t do sit ups every day.
5.) Here are some of my favorite sites: Blogilates, ZuzkaLight (I’ve moved on from Body Rock, since I didn’t like the direction it was going, but the BR website does still feature Zuzana’s older videos), and Random Abs.
These habits shouldn’t just be whipped out when you have to pull on a pair of swim trunks or bikini bottoms. They should be with you during fall and winter as well. And remember, even if you had the hottest body in the world, there are still going to be people who’ll find something negative to point out, so get healthy for yourself. And to be honest, not everyone is going to be looking at you at the beach. They’ll be playing football, and reading magazines, and trying to get all their bits back into their bathing suits when a big wave totally owns them out of nowhere. Your confidence is what will shine through, and you’ll be able to spend the day actually having fun instead of worrying about your body.
Peel Away ❤