6 Steps for Summer Body Confidence!

So, I’m on holiday.

Hopefully you are too. Or at least will be soon.

Which means one thing.

Swimwear.

This is still an area of difficulty for most of us. Whether it should be the case or not, bikini body confidence is still something that is talked about requiring this time of year and most of us don’t have it.

So here are my tips for that confidence you need.

Step 1 – Fuel your body with the nutrients it requires. That includes both what it needs and what it wants. It doesn’t include 3 week crazy diets eliminating every food group and only drinking things which should be in a pond. Your body requires a certain amount of calories, vitamins, minerals, fibre and nutrients everyday. A bikini or any other type of clothing doesn’t change that. But also remember that food is there to be enjoyed. Eat to fuel yourself. And then have an ice cream.

Step 2 – Workout for a reason other than to lose fat. I know, mad hey? Why would we work out for any other reason? Sadly this is the truth most of us live. Our primary reason for exercise is weight loss (fat loss). But the benefits exercise brings us, are so much more. Try these – improving and retaining mobility (hold on to physical independence with age), improve bone health (avoid osteoporosis/arthritis), increase muscle mass (beat dudes in arm wrestles), improved mental health (no time to be sad when you’re smashing weights), improved sleep pattern (it’s tiring being sexy AF), reduced stress levels (do one, anxiety). There are SO many reasons to exercise, find something you enjoy and nail it. And keep nailing it every damn day because you can and you care about yourself.

Step 3 – Stay hydrated. I know what you’re thinking. ‘Thanks for the tip, Mum’. I’m serious, this is a big one. Most of us are dehydrated, most of the time. And the summer heat makes this worse. Combine that with a few mojitos and it is quite literally, a recipe for disaster. A 5% decrease in hydration, leads to a 33% decrease in cognitive decline. Do you think you’re going to enjoy yourself as much as possible if you’re working at 67%? This is such a simple step but most of us wash over it without much attention. Please. Drink. Your. Water. 1-2 litres per day. Plus an additional litre for every hour of physical activity. Plus extra in the heat. So basically, drink water like it is your job.

Step 4 – Naps are KING. Our sleep pattern usually suffers in the summer, especially on holiday. Later nights, afternoon naps, lazy mornings. Don’t worry, I’m not going to tell you to go to bed at 10pm every night (that’s just my life. Guilty as charged.), however prioritising your 8 hours even while way is important. Yes ideally our sleep pattern would to stay consistent when we’re away, but life doesn’t usually work like that. If you want help with sleeping better, try steps 2 & 3.

Step 5 – GO ON A DETOX! Wait, what? Has she gone mad? Nope, not that type of detox. I mean a social media detox. Unfollow any page that makes you feel anything less than enough, exactly as you are. Yes those fitness blogger accounts are great to follow for workouts, the fashion accounts show you all the new styles and the lifestyle pages are so helpful for tips to stay organised. But are they helping you? Really? Or are they just making you feel inadequate for not getting up at 5am to do a yoga session followed by a green juice and spin class and follow a raw vegan diet to wear a size 8 dress which cost 3 times your monthly salary? Go through your following list and unfollow anyone you either don’t know or don’t benefit from their content. If it doesn’t positively inspire you, make you feel awesome, aid your everyday life or encourage you, then it’s got to go. And whilst you’re there you can follow me – @thefoodandfitnesswiz. (Shameless)

Step 6 – Respect yourself. Before you stop reading. That’s not meant to be as lame as it sounds. Provided you’ve followed steps 1-5 you should be confident that you have done everything in your power to ensure the best possible environment for your body and mind. We talk about body confidence as self love. And whilst I’m down with that, and agree we should love ourselves unconditionally, it’s not that easy. If we could all just let go of our hang ups and love ourselves then we wouldn’t really have a problem. It’s not that simple. I think it starts with self respect. If you know hand on heart you’re doing everything you can to support your body and make yourself happy (that includes ice cream, wine and yoga and green juice if that’s your jam), then what do you have to be worried about? You have done everything you can do.

So dammit put your bikini on and go play in the sea.

I’ll see you there.

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