As the bikini season is approaching you might feel a little intimidated when thinking about the moment when you will first have to wear a swimsuit this summer. As we all know, the swimsuit shows all the flaws that we somehow have managed to camouflage all year round.
If for various reasons you have neglected your fitness routine so there’s no need to worry: in just four weeks you will be able to tone your body and tackle the problem areas with a few carefully selected exercises. While these exercises can do a lot to help you achieve a worth-admiring beach body you should consider adopting a healthy diet for best results.
Try cutting down on the amount of sugar you ingest on a daily basis, replace simple carbohydrates with complex carbs, decrease your salt intake to prevent water retention, eliminate highly processed food and increase your intake of fruits and vegetables for the next four weeks.
Be careful about the beverages you choose as well: as painful as it might be try to break that soda habit of yours which only has negative effects on your health and especially on your waist. Also, try not to use sports drinks to replenish the electrolytes that you lost during exercise. First of all, unless you are a professional athlete you shouldn’t worry about this aspect and secondly, there are plenty other ways to replenish those electrolytes. One of them is eating a banana which is high in potassium that can help restore the optimal balance. Once you have made the necessary adjustments to your diet it’s time to start creating an exercise routine that will get you closer to your goal. Try combining the following exercises for best results:
Stability ball crunches
Using a swiss ball to do crunches it’s not only fun but also highly effective. The stability ball is an affordable and exciting tool for weight loss due to the fact that maintaining stability requires using more muscles and because more muscles are being used simultaneously it’s easier to burn fat.
To correctly perform crunches on the swiss ball follow these steps. Start by sitting on the ball. Next, roll your body backward until your back is fully supported and make sure the knees are bent at a 90 degree angle and your feet are flat on the floor. Put your hands behind your ears and slowly start to crunch forward taking a deep breath.
Come back to the starting position or, to make this exercise more challenging try slowly twisting your body to the left and and then go back to the starting position. Try doing 2 sets of 15 repetitions each. While this exercise might be hard in the beginning, after a couple of days you will become used to it and it will become easier.
Side plank shoulder lift
To tone your arms try this exercise: step into a plank position then lift your hips slightly, shifting your weight into one hand. Keep your shoulders, your hips and ankles in a straight line. Stay there for a few seconds and then come back into a plank pose and try this exercise on the other hand. To increase the effectiveness of this exercise try adding dumbbells.
Start by lying on your back keeping your knees bent and your arms at the sides. Lift your hips to form a diagonal line from your shoulders to your knees and strengthen the right leg pointing it towards the ceiling. Lower your hips, transferring the weight to your left foot, contract your glutes and lift the hips back up. Switch to the other side and repeat. You should try to do at least 10 repetitions on each side at the beginning and gradually increase.
Quadruped hip extensions
This exercise is designed to tone the buttocks as this area is the one that causes women the most headaches. Get on your hands and knees, contracting the abdominal muscles bending the knee to for a 90 degree angle. Add weights to make this exercise more challenging. Lift the foot until the hip thighs and knee are parallel to the floor. Then lower the foot back and do the other side. You should make 3 sets of 16 repetitions on each side.