Sure, we all say we're working towards those 'summer bodies' while we're at school. But what's the occasional mile here or there going towards? Goals are the biggest thing. To successfully set yourself up for a fit and toned summer, set a goal for yourself. Want to strengthen your core? Or increase flexibility? These are all achievable things that anyone can do, and with a few simple steps! Take the steps in the right direction to a fun and fit summer, starting with the basics:
1. Sneakers: To start any kind of training, make sure you're in the right pair of sneakers. Each pair is composed for different strengths and weaknesses. Some have more stability in the arches for support ad pronation (over rotation of the foot while walking or running), some have more cushioning for alleviating heel pressure or even have additinoal purposes to allow for transitioning to cross training. My suggestion is to go to a specialized store to find what your fit and need is, and then shop around for a brand you like that carries what your feet require. I'm biased towards Asics, but it's all personal preference!
2. Attire: As cliche as it may be, the running 'look' does not a runner make. Wear loose, comfortable clothing that you're ready to sweat in! There's no special type of clothing that will make you perform better, run faster, or lift more. There's clothing that have moisture wicking abililties, or other added features that will help maintain comfort while working out. Again, it's more of a personal preference than anything, simple athletic shorts and cotton t's will do the trick just fine!
3. Hydrate: The big rule, is to hydrate, hydrate, hydrate! No matter how much physical activity you're planning on participating in per day, your body must be prepped and able to perform without dehydrating. Your muscles need to be functioning to their peak ability to perform at their best, especially for training purposes. Before working out, depending on what you will be doing, a minimum of 32 oz. should be consumed within the hour and a half leading up to working out. Hydrate in between exercise, and replenish after as well. About 64 oz. should be consumed post-workout to replenish and continue to hydrate for the rest of the day. In addition to hydrating, consuming small meals will benefit your workouts. Eat a small meal with protein an hour and a half prior to working out, and small snacks throughout if needed. Things like nuts and dried fruit are perfect for boosting energy and regulating metabolism. And as always, carbohydrates are the best for prepping for long endurance workouts two days in advance!
These few tips are the basics for starting any kind of training, no matter how intensive. Every new beginning comes from somewhere, and these three tips will prepare you for anything that will kick start summer in a fit and fun way!