Everywhere you go, people are talking about and/or watched the 2016 Summer Olympic in Brazil. Athletes made headlines, broke records and turned heads with their antics south of the border! Gorgeous gymnasts, sleek divers, and muscular wrestlers from all over the world caused a sensation and brought home medals for their physical excellence. Yes, the Olympics are an inspiration. And those bodies: well, who can’t help being a little intimidated? Summer is a perfect time to tweek your present workout or begin a new and challenging routine that will net results. It’s not too late to put some sizzle into your summer exercise program. Need a little inspiration to hit the gym and improve that body? Check out some pix of our athletes in action on line, on TV, or on the covers of every major publication.
No athlete ever hit the mats, pool or high-bar without first getting enough sleep. The same holds true for you if you’re really hitting the gym and doing regular cardio to burn fat, build mass and improve your cardio-vascular system. Skimping on sleep and giving into stress can increase the levels of cortisol and estrogen in your system which can lead to an increase in deep abdominal fat, reduced muscle mass, and extreme fatigue Sound ugly? It is, but besides that expanding waistline, you are more susceptible to colorectal cancer and heart disease. Relax this summer and sleep – 8-10 hours a night and THEN hit the gym like a tiger!
Michael Phelps and H2O, they’re a natural combination. Right? You should be chugging water and staying hydrated, too, especially if you’re working or exercising outdoors. The International Sports Sciences Association recommends 8-10 eight ounce glasses of water per day. Bored with H2O? Instead, try a few cups of hot, freshly brewed green tea every day. It is a powerful anti-oxidant which is good for your skin and it helps fight cancer.
Add a little diversity to your cardio training this summer. If you prefer walking, pick up your pace and you’ll likely burn 25% more calories. Try interval training three times a week for 30 minutes. Interval training alternates brisk walking and running with shorter intense periods of jogging, running, calisthenics, etc. When walking, your intensity should be such that you can only speak a few words at a time. Carry 5 or 10 lb dumbbells with you as you’re moving.
Doing cardio burns fat, but pumping iron builds muscles, increases strength, and revs your metabolism. Moderate to high intensity weight training twice a week is a great place to begin. The more lean muscle you carry, the more calories and fat you burn all the time. If you’re already doing this, then add an extra hour a week of weight training to your workouts. Use the extra time you have this summer to try different free weight routines and new machines in your gym.
Looking fit and feeling healthy is about 75% good nutrition. Never skip breakfast and remember to eat smaller meals/snacks every 2-3 hours each day to keep your body from storing fat. Never eat within three hours of retiring. Eat lighter this summer by eliminating as much fat, processed foods and junk from your diet as you can.
Tom Bonanti is a personal trainer and massage therapist (MA#40288) with his own one on one gym and massage studio www.pumpnincgym.com at 1271 NE 9th Avenue in Ft. Lauderdale, Fl. 33304. Contact Tom [email protected] with questions. Call today (954) 557-1119 to schedule a free consultation.