11 Apr How to Look Good in a Bikini
It’s time to slip on a swimsuit and show the world how proud you are of your body…or not.
Yes it’s that time of year, when the layers are peeled off and humidity climbs. But if just thinking about baring a bit more skin sends you into a sweat, it’s probably time to take action. Now.
Forget trawling through confusing information or going out there alone. Instead, take solid, reliable, professional advice from those at the coalface of the fitness industry.
So here’s the skinny on how to lose fat fast and look super hot this summer, thanks to some of Flex’s expert trainers.
Kimber Domke, Xtend Barre trainer:
Diet is critical for transforming your body. Abs are made in the kitchen!
Cutting carbohydrates and replacing them with protein and vegetables is the fast track to weight loss. For faster fat burning, cut processed foods, sugar, complex carbohydrates and dairy.
In the long run, your eating and exercise habits must be sustainable. Develop your habits one day (or even one hour) at a time. Keeping a food diary for a week is a great way to increase your awareness and eat more mindfully. TRX and Tabata training are fantastic ways to spur fat loss and increase muscle mass.
Heather Thomas Shalabi, Flex co-director, Pilates and Yoga instructor:
Here are my diet tips: PREPARATION! Most people’s downfall with dieting is they don’t have healthy snacks or a packed lunch with them, then end up grabbing something quickly on the go. It’s bound to be less healthy than home -prepared food. My suggestion is to spend time on Sunday planning and shopping for weekly meals and snacks. Be sure to plan quick-grab snacks (keep dried fruit and nuts in the car or at work), and pack your lunch every day. Write out a weekly menu planner and stick to it; freeze soups or veggie burgers so you never have an excuse about not having something healthy in hand.
What to cut out? Milky coffee drinks! The lattes and cappuccinos add up quickly. In a restaurant, never eat the bread/bread sticks. Order one thing less than you might otherwise, and don’t finish it all.
Here’s my exercise tips: I do a Tabata-style set of at least 2-3 exercises every morning. You simply can’t beat the thermogenic (metabolism increasing) effect! Try to exercise at least one hour a day.
The best group classes for someone starting a diet program – for quick fat burning – I have to say are Tabata and Xtend Barre.
Skincare tip while exercising and dieting: Get that little bit more help with at-home body care products to help slim, smooth and tackle cellulite.
Michelle Ricaille, yoga instructor, organic produce distributor:
To lose fat fast, cut all dairy (cheese, ice cream, butter, milk), breads, processed foods and processed sugar. Natural Sugar from fruits is ok.
When it comes to exercising at home every day, walk 20 minutes, take the stairs when possible, do 32 sun salutations (this will take about 20 minutes). You need to do at least 20 minutes of physical activity to have any impact on the body.
The mindset you have to have is: No Excuses!!! It’s funny how some people have time for shopping or coffee with a friend but say ‘I don’t have time to exercise’. If your goal is to lose weight you need to make the effort and put exercise and eating right as your number one priority for at least a few weeks. Generally, it takes around 30 days for someone to create a habit. It’s best to do exercise in the morning as more excuses not to do it come up throughout the day.
When out for dinner, eat something healthy at home before going out, then try to pick something light on the menu – a salad, rice and vegetables. Also, stay away from alcohol as this often puts on tummy weight. If you do choose to have a drink, the better options are one glass of red wine or a gin and tonic. It’s always best to eat at home and know exactly what you are eating. If have a helper cook, find a healthy gluten free/dairy free cookbook and have your helper prepare dishes from that. No deep-fried food.
When it comes to exercise, to really kick start the metabolism, interval training is the best, like Tabata, TRX, or Cardio Xtend Bare classes. These combine cardio and strength training
Look into these for further information on how to lose weight.
Emily Tan, Aerial Hammock instructor, aerial arts performer:
Cut out sugar, up the water intake. I did 4 liters a day for a week prepping for a show.
Every day, cycle through different methods rather than the same exercises:
- Bodyweight compound strength and muscle endurance exercises like squats, lunges, pull-ups and push-ups
- Bodyweight cardiovascular conditioning exercises like rope skipping, sprints and jump squats.
- Mat Pilates for posture alignment and core strength conditioning
- Fundamental yoga and stretching for optimal recovery
Learn what drives you, fuel that desire, PLAN and stick with the plan like you’re saving up for that one-of-a-kind pair of shoes you’ve been eyeing for ages.
With food, surround yourself with people who truly understand why you are doing this and why you need it. Peer pressure often affects you being conscious of your eating habits while you eat out but it should not be an issue. After all, it is YOUR body and YOU suffer the consequences, not the people who tease you about mindful eating.
Be the one who suggest where to eat. Know the restaurants and cafes around you where you KNOW there will be better options for you to order your food. Even if you can’t pick the restaurant, at least suggest a cuisine where more friendly options would bound to be available.
If you end up eating somewhere new, ask the waiter about food preparation and alternatives. There is no shame in asking the kitchen crew to help with your food preferences.
If discipline is something you are struggling with, eat a meal at home before going out to be less tempted to order a huge meal. This also means that ordering a salad at dinner is less likely to be unsatisfactory.
Tailor your exercise program to suit you. Everybody’s program varies and it should vary, depending on one’s fitness level, lifestyle and eating habits. Consult your coach or personal trainer to get the best advice on how much regular exercise is good for YOU.
The physical activity I recommend would depend on someone’s diet. On a more general and wide scale note, a group class that is fun and a guaranteed calorie burn at the same time is less intimidating. A group class that places an emphasis on strength and cardiovascular is ideal for someone on a more balanced diet with protein, carbohydrates and fat. A group class that places an emphasis on mind body connection like yoga is ideal for someone who is just starting a vegetarian/vegan diet. The list goes on with years of research and tests on how physical activity directly correlates to the right eating plan. Always consult a dietitian or a nutritionist for personalized planning.
Nicole Serje, Pilates instructor:
There are MANY tips for weight loss that nearly everyone knows, but I think one tip that often gets overlooked is drinking enough water. Most people are not very good at getting enough water when they don’t exercise or are trying to lose weight, let alone when they are trying to loss weight. Water is important in the weight-loss equation because it
- helps the feeling of satiety
- helps at increasing energy levels. Keeping adequately hydrated enhances/improves the metabolic functions of the body, which means everything works much better and more efficiently
- helps to improve the appearance of your skin, making you look and feel better
Get enough sleep for your needs!
In terms of mindset, overcoming negative or ‘red thoughts’ (as my daughters have learnt at school) is probably one of the hardest things to overcome. Learning to change these thoughts into ‘green thoughts’ go a long way in helping with weight loss. All you need to change self-talk from “I’m so hopeless, I ate a whole block of chocolate” or “I didn’t get to do a full 45minute workout” and so on, to ” I ate the chocolate, it was delicious and I will eat an extra piece of fruit tomorrow, which is a new day,” or “I still managed to move and walk for 20 minutes/ I played with the children for half an hour”. Life happens and we all have kids/ jobs/ family issues and it’s what we do 80-90 per cent of the time that is going to affect our progress as opposed to the 10-20 per cent where we miss workouts or eat less than ideally.
Sayings like ‘Focus on progress, not perfection’ and ‘consistency is key’ really do sum it up.