Insight piece by Kundai Murapa | Instagram: @kundaimurapa
Few things present a more pressing concern than getting “summer-ready”. As trivial as it might seem, millions scramble each year to perfect that summer bod and flaunt their shreds during beach season. You very well could be one of the many in search of your best summer shape. If that’s the case, you’re in the right place. This article is going to skim a few tips and hacks you can implement today and get your summer shape up! And with that said. Let’s check out some tips that will help you get and keep that summer body all season.
Here are six top tips for a great year round “summer body”!
1. FOCUSING ON HABITS INSTEAD OF OUTCOMES
When it comes to body goals, it’s all too common to fixate on a very specific outcome. Maybe you’re inspired by a famous fitness personality, or you have specific areas of your body you wish to optimize. Maybe you just want to shed a few kilos of fat or gain a bit of muscle. Whatever the case, these set, ultimate outcomes can limit your ability to actually achieve them. Instead, focus on habits and building a lifestyle routine that puts you on a path not only to achieve your goals but to shoot past them through consistent and sustainable action. Your health and fitness are lifestyle priorities, not seasonal obligations.
2. PRIORITIZE NUTRITION
Nutrition… duh… but what many people think is obvious, to some, is an absolute realm of confusion. Nutrition is key to a great body, no one will dispute that, but how to hack your diet is the milliondollar question. From a nutritional standpoint, limiting body fat while maintaining or building muscle is the ticket. Clean up your act, avoid processed foods as much as possible. Opt for fresh, whole foods. This is especially important when it comes to fruit and veg. That’s because they contain dietary fiber, a substance that helps mediate the uptake of sugar from your gut into your bloodstream. Excess blood glucose is a known risk factor in unhealthy weight gain. Also, try to avoid foods containing trans fats. Most processed snack foods as well as fast food prepared using industrial methods. These introduce free radicals into your body, triggering oxidative stress and inflammation, big no-nos when aiming for those sweet summer shreds. Trans fats also mess with your cholesterol balance, tipping the scale from HDL (good cholesterol) dominance, to LDL (bad cholesterol) dominance. All this is made slightly more difficult by the fact that summer in the southern hemisphere coincides with the annual festive season. A major conflict arises, but fear not, you can have your cake and eat it (pun intended). By simply working with substitutes, you can enjoy a majority of the festive flavors with much less of the guilt. For sugar, substitute with artificial or alternative sweeteners such as xylitol, sucralose or stevia. For pastries, stuffing or batter, gluten-free alternatives such as almond or flaxseed flour are amazing. Ultimately, learning about what your unique nutritional needs are is the best starting point. Consult a qualified dietician to get a handle on your nutritional profile.
3. HYDRATION IS KEY
Staying hydrated is an essential part of life. We are composed of at least 60% water, suffice to say, we need it just to exist. When it comes to that coveted summer body, good hydration couldn’t be more important. Having a healthy fluid balance allows your body to function at maximum efficiency. The transport of nutrients and removal of waste through the myriad of fluid systems in your body is one aspect that affects the type of body composition you can achieve. Water also drives your metabolism. Having an optimal water balance means your metabolism is firing off at capacity, and when this happens, your propensity towards burning body fat shoots up. One last cool thing about staying hydrated is how water can increase satiety. Satiety or being satiated is the sense of feeling full after having eaten. When you feel full, your gastrointestinal system signals to your brain that it must stop feeling hungry. This can be triggered by many things, but one common one is through the mechanical pressure placed by food material in the stomach. Water is, therefore, a zero-calorie contributor to the feeling of fullness. Aim for at least 2 litres of water each day. More on active or really hot days.
4. THERMOGENIC BOOST
Thermogenics or fat-burners are chemicals that influence metabolic activity by speeding it up, which in turn raises core temperature. Thermogenics are often misunderstood mainly due to context or incorrect information. That’s because fat-burners, as they are typically called, are considered highly toxic at worst or ineffective at best. A conclusion usually reached under the assumption that fat burners are all artificial harsh chemicals. Nothing could be further from the truth, well, at least from our perspective. That’s because here at Nutritech, our Thermotech range focuses on natural extractions and compounds, safe and available for your body to kick fat burning up a few gears.
Here’s a quick checklist of great natural thermogenics you should try:
- Garcinia Cambogia
- Raspberry Ketone
- Cayenne Pepper
- Apple cider vinegar
5. STAY ACTIVE
Staying active can be a bummer when there’s so much to do and so little time to enjoy the holiday season. So why not combine festive fun with your activity schedule. After all, when the sun is out, outdoors is all yours. Strap up those hiking boots or jump onto a stand-up paddleboard. Soak up the rays while getting a good amount of activity at the same time.
6. FIT MIND, FIT BODY
One last and significant consideration when aiming for your summer bod is mindfulness. This will benefit you in several ways. Firstly, the mindset and attitude you will need to make the right choices for your health and fitness will only begin with a mindful approach. Intention, discipline, and patience as well as having a live-in-the-moment attitude towards your summer fitness goals. We mentioned earlier that you should aim to cultivate habits over aiming for once-off outcomes. This is where mindfulness really shines. Another way your mind matters is on a more fundamental, physiological level. Your thought patterns and brain activity governs a lot of the physical functions and processes your body undergoes. This is achieved through a delicate balance of hormone interactions.
When your mind is not at ease, you’ll experience a surge in cortisol, the stress hormone. Chronic exposure to this hormone can lead to a slowdown in your metabolism as well as a disruption in your appetite and digestive process. A litany of other conditions have stress as a risk factor, all of which can lead to a diminished quality of life, summer or otherwise:
- Muscle aches and cramps
- Mood swings
- Brain fog
Getting your mental and cognitive state up to standard is pivotal in developing the habits and attitude necessary to nail those summer body goals. That’s why we’ve also taken the time to develop a nootropic brain booster blend supplement from our Vitatech range to help you keep your eyes on the prize this summer and beyond.
With Summer in full swing, it’s important to try and carry good, mindful habits through the season and straight into the colder, darker days. Some say summer bodies are made in winter. We say summer bodies are made every day.