If humans could change their body compositions overnight, thinking about preparing for summer fun would never be an issue. In fact, true and lasting body composition changes can take months of dedication to proper nutrition and goal-oriented exercise. A recent study by Johns Hopkins University concluded that the average person in North America gains between five and seven pounds of fat during the winter months. At a healthy fat loss rate of 2-3 pounds per month, that means it’s important to start your summer workout in the spring.
Many people will find themselves looking in their bedroom mirror, counting two weeks before they leave for their beach vacation, and realize they need to do some work. They will start a radical cardio regimen, or a dangerous dieting scheme, and the same thing almost always happens. They never achieve the look they want, and they end up gaining more weight back when they fail.
A smarter approach to displaying an acceptable summer physique is getting an early start, which means tackling the ravages of winter on the body as soon as it becomes pleasant outside. Once daylight starts returning, and there is little ice outside on which to slip, it’s time to start looking ahead to summer.
Getting a summer body means having two major goals, fat loss and regained muscle integrity, and it’s a good thing these two go hand-in-hand if you do your spring workouts correctly. Instead of restarting a gym membership, find a pay-as-you-go facility that you can couple with outdoor activities. Barbells are rarely found on the jogging path, and open country is rarely found in a hardcore gym, so you can think of spring as the perfect time to learn to combine the two environments.
Combining the two environments allows a perfect scenario for high intensity interval training, or HIIT, workouts with periods of intense, sweat-inducing activity book-ended by less intense periods. Some studies report that 2-3 weeks of HIIT training can produce the same body-changing results as 6-8 weeks of endurance training.
Jogging to the gym with periods of sprints, then using the gym to do HIIT resistance training, then sprinting and jogging back home is the perfect example of this type of workout. This would produce much faster summer body changes than spending an hour doing sets at the gym, or an hour on the treadmill at home. The best way to start is to check out what trails are available in your area, check out the different classes on offer in the GTA, like the spring workouts at Striation 6 and start tailoring an HIIT training regimen that works for you.
Once you’ve got the planning out the way, you can start enjoying the quality of results HIIT training provides. It tones muscles throughout the entire body, especially the parts that make swimsuits look great, and it retrains the metabolism to function well at a lower body fat percentage, which guarantees the weight will not yo-yo. Best of all, when you start your summer workout in the spring, it will not seem like drudgery. Get your sneakers out, check for walk-in gym facilities in your area, and make sure spring this year counts when preparing for summer fun.