It’s summertime. And that means more outdoor activity, less restrictive clothing, and quite simply, more of a visible you. Hollis Lance Liebman, author of Complete Physique has the following tips for anyone who wants to look feel and look their best hitting the beach this summer. It’s a great time to reset your fitness at every level.
TAKE IT OUTSIDE
With the inviting sun and fun weather, it can sometimes be difficult to get to the gym for the usual routine. You can renew your mental and physical spirits by getting back to basics by simply taking it outside. Pushups and bodyweight squats, along with running or biking can all be performed amongst the elements. Additionally, bands, Swiss Balls and other portable peripherals can add variety and fun to a sometimes stale and stagnant workout.
WORK YOUR ENTIRE BODY
Sure the chest and arm muscles receive a lot of attention, but keep your workouts in balance. A flawless upper body that sits upon stilts is not a good look, nor is it optimal for total body fitness. The often neglected muscles such as the calves, forearms, posterior deltoids, hamstrings and even your core, will definitely detract from you being all that you can be. You’ll not only look more balanced, you will actually be more balanced in your daily performance in life.
EAT SMART FOR MUSCLE TONE
Many fat-loss programs require drastic caloric restrictions and extreme amounts of cardiovascular exercise. The problem is that most also do a pretty good job of wasting away your muscle mass at the same time. Regardless of what your fat loss goals might be, losing muscle tissue is never a good idea–it slows your metabolism to a crawl. Instead of following a low-calorie diet, follow a dietary plan that will enhance your ability to both build and preserve muscle, and rev up your metabolism in the process.
STRETCHING IS ESSENTIAL, BUT DON’T GO BALLISTIC
Have you heard of ballistic stretching? It’s a kind of stretch in which you move into a position and then bounce to stretch the muscle. An example would be bending to touch your toes and then bouncing to reach them. Ballistic stretching can do a lot more harm than good, tightening the muscle and leading to injury. During and after your workout are ample times to stretch as your muscles and warm and pliable, unlike at the onset of your routine when your muscles are cold and restrictive.
PLAN TO LOOK GREAT…AND FEEL EVEN BETTER!
The desire to look great in your swimsuit may be what’s inspiring you to get in shape, but remember that the results will be more than just cosmetic. As you build muscle and stamina, you’ll be able to excel at classic summer sports like beach volleyball, swimming, and surfing. The active habits that you form this summer will inspire you to stay fit year-round!
HOLLIS LANCE LIEBMAN has been a fitness magazine editor, national bodybuilding champion, and author. He is a published physique photographer and has served as a bodybuilding and fitness competition judge. Hollis has worked with some of Hollywood’s elite, earning rave reviews. Visit his web site, www.holliswashere.com, for fitness tips and complete training programs.