As bikini season approaches, you may find yourself wanting to quickly get rid of that extra jiggle in your wiggle. Fad diets might tempt you with promises of fast weight loss, but this approach is likely to lead to weight regain and can compromise your health. To get rid of the muffin top in time to strut your stuff on the beach, you must follow a calorie-reduced diet while getting your sweat on with regular exercise.
Dietary Changes to Lose Weight Fast
Following a healthy, calorie-reduced diet can help you slim down and get ready for that body-baring bikini. A reduction of 250 to 500 calories per day can help you shed .5 to 1 pound per week of wobbly fat. Keep it simple by ditching the sugary, 250-calorie sodas in favor of water, or eat a turkey burger without the bun and mayo to save yourself 400 to 500 calories, when compared to a standard burger. Consume five small meals per day consisting of lean protein sources, fresh fruits and veggies, whole grains and low-fat to nonfat dairy. BonAppetit.com recommends spicy foods that boost your metabolism temporarily, or foods such as papaya and pineapple that contain a high amount of digestive enzymes to break down your food faster. Fish, such as sardines and salmon, that are rich in omegas 3 and 6 can help reduce bloating so you look slimmer in your bikini.
Cardio Exercise Plan
Heart-pumping cardiovascular exercise is an essential part of your fat-busting plan to get you in bikini-shape as fast as possible. Aim for 150 to 300 minutes of cardio exercise that gets you sweating. If your schedule makes it hard to workout for 30 to 60 minutes at a time, break down your fitness routine into 10- to 15-minute segments. Blast calories more quickly with interval training, leading to faster weight loss. Interval training consists of regular-paced spurts of exercise, followed by more vigorously-paced exercise. For instance, you can walk for four minutes, and then jog for 30 to 60 seconds. Ride your bike at a regular pace for three minutes, and then really push the pedals for one minute. Or jog for four minutes, and then sprint for 30 seconds.
Resistance Exercise Plan
Include strength training in your bikini-shape exercise plan to boost metabolism and get a toned body more quickly. Strength train two to three times per week for at least 20 minutes each session. Include strength training moves that work the muscles of your whole body such as dumbbell front squats, bent-over barbell rows, chest flys, weighted lunges and dumbbell lateral raises. Use a weight that's heavy enough to tire your muscles by the 12th repetition.
Before You Get Started
No matter how anxious you are to look sexy in your bikini, take time to see your doctor first to get health clearance. Keep in mind that it's best to focus on consistent weight loss instead of speed. A loss of 1 to 2 pounds per week will help you slim down and promote long-term maintenance of your goal weight. Break large weight loss goals down into smaller, more attainable chunks to avoid feeling overwhelmed. No matter how much of a hurry you're in, take one day off per week from cardio and perform your strength-training exercises every other day to avoid fatigue and injury from overtraining syndrome, resulting from not allowing your body the time it needs to recover from exertion.
- University of Maryland Medical Center: Common-Sense Strategies to Long-Term Weight Loss
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: Physical Activity
- Bon Appetit: 9 Foods to Eat to Slim Down for Summer
- MayoClinic.com: Rev Up Your Workout with Interval Training
- MayoClinic.com: Strength Training -- Get Stronger, Leaner, Healthier
- American Council on Exercise: Total Body Workout
- Rice University: Overtraining Syndrome
Mary Ylisela is a former teacher with a Bachelor of Arts in elementary education and mathematics. She has been a writer since 1996, specializing in business, fitness and education. Prior to teaching, Ylisela worked as a certified fitness instructor and a small-business owner.