Ladies, now is the time to get back in the gym and kick butt! With summer just around the corner, it's never too early to start toning. First things first - clean up your diet. You can run for miles and miles, but if you sit in front of the T.V. mindlessly eating afterward, you're not going to see much of a difference. Eating foods like avocados, nuts, berries and low-carb string cheese are great snacks that take the edge off without packing on the pounds. When you are consuming the right foods, your body has more energy and you are more likely to make it to the gym.
When you're starting out, think about what your goals are. Weight loss, toning, strengthening your muscles or training for competitions, etc. It is extremely important to be realistic about what you can achieve in the given time period, so you don't get discouraged. Designate how many times a week you want to go to the gym and try and stick to it. Don't beat yourself up if you can't make it one day, just make up for it another day or do some exercises from home. No matter what pace you take getting back in shape, you are always further ahead than the people on the couch.
Need some motivation to get started? Get yourself some cute gym clothes! What better way to look and feel your best than with a great gym wardrobe? The most essential item to have is a pair of compression socks or sleeves. Grab a pair of Sigvaris Compression Calf Sleeves to enhance performance and to prevent injuries like shin splints and leg cramps. Most important? Wearing compression sleeves or socks after a workout speeds up your recovery time so you can get back out there in no time. Featuring 20-30mmHg of graduated compression from the ankle to the knee, these sleeves increase circulation and improve blood flow. They are perfect for working out, training for marathons or triathlons, and also for running long distances. Compression sleeves and socks are vital to keeping your legs healthy and energized, especially when you are first starting out.
It is important to work in cardio and weight lifting each week. There should be a balance between the two based on how often and how long you work out and for. If you only go a couple of times a week, you should consider doing a total body workout each time. This is where you hit all of your muscle groups in one session, and if you have time, add in about 20 minutes of cardio after. If you plan on going 3-5 times a week or more, you should try dedicating each day to targeting specific muscle groups. For example, spend one day focusing just on your legs, and another only doing back and tricep exercises to work the muscles more thoroughly. If you want to tone your body, the best way to do so is through resistance training. Grab a pair of resistance bands and try some of these exercises.
Check out these customized workouts by Women's Health Magazine that are based on your specific body type. Make sure you listen to your body. Try keeping a food and exercise log to see your progress. This helps to catch patterns that may be preventing you from reaching your goals faster. No matter what kind of exercise you do, the most important part is that you're out there trying. Don't give up!! Remember, the real workout begins when you're so tired that you want to quit. Mention us on Twitter at @brightlifego and show us your progress!