Everybody talks about getting “bikini ready”, and while that really just means putting on a bikini and rockin’ it no matter what, it’s still a great excuse to kickstart your exercise regime to look and feel your best during summer.
Since summer is no longer on the way — it’s already here! — there’s no time to lose when it comes to getting into shape. Here are some recommendations on how to get beach ready quickly and the best areas to target for maximum results.
Focus Area: Abs
Exercise #1: Planks
There’s no way around it – doing planks is super hard. However, there’s no better way to tone your core while building up your overall strength than by busting out a few planks every day. The best part about planking isn’t just the quick results; they’re also great because they make you look and feel good, which is the ultimate goal. Pair a few planking reps with some crunches to watch your abs get toned in no time!
Exercise #2: Yoga
Okay, okay, okay… this isn’t technically one exercise. It’s more of a lifestyle, but I promise it’s worth getting into! If you’re a beginner yogi, inversions might be a ways off, but if you’re more an intermediate-to-advanced level, try dedicating your practice towards inversions over the summer. Not only will this give you a new outlook on life, it’ll force your upper half to learn how to support and balance your entire body weight, which means (you guessed it) a stronger core.
Focus Area: Glutes
Exercise #3: Squats
Full disclosure: I didn’t even know what my glutes were until I went to a Pilates Reformer class. (Just for the sake of clarity, glutes are your butt.) This underused-but-often-moaned-over part of your body can be your best friend or greatest enemy depending on how you feel about it. If you want to fill out that bikini bottom in true Kardashian style, it’s time to do some squats! Celebrities swear by them and there’s no arguing that you’ll feel the burn.
Exercise #4: Lunges
Lunges are one of those great exercises that work more than one part of your body. In this case, it’s your rear end as well as your legs, which makes them a super targeted exercise that is guaranteed to give you good results fast. Plus, you don’t need any equipment other than what you’ve already got packin. Get ready to get bootylicious!
Focus Area: Arms
Exercise #5: Dips
If when I dip, you dip, does that mean we dip? This is a two-part exercise: putting down the chips n’ dip (diet is important!) as well as working your chest and triceps. Dips are a medium-intensity exercise, so it’s best to add these to your regular regimen after you’ve built up a few week’s worth of effort.
Exercise #6: Squats + Weights
Squats aren’t just a great way to work your glutes. If you add some bicep curls to your squats, you’ll instantly layer on another method of strength-training, which is ideal for the gal on the go who wants the best results fast. Try using smaller weights first (think 3-5 lbs. per hand) and focus on more reps rather than risk straining your arm strength with too much weight.
Focus Area: Legs
Exercise #7: Bicycling
Biking is a really fun way to explore your neighborhood and burn some major calories at the same time. It doesn’t matter if you have a beach cruiser, a single speed, a fixed gear, or anything in-between. Just hopping on your bike and cruising around town is the perfect way to start toning your legs to look their best (and get a little sun-kissed as well).
Exercise #8: Jogging
Leg exercises are IMHO the most fun! You pretty much don’t need any equipment to get started — just hit the road on your own two feet. If you have a beach nearby (lucky!), that’s an even more fun, challenging, and picturesque way to get your heart rate up. You don’t need to commit to full sprints or even really long distances; just enjoy the view and feel the burn.
While there’s no true “quick and easy!” way to tone up other than a healthy diet and lifestyle, these exercises are fun and functional ways to target your beach bod areas in a hurry.
Find out more exercises that don’t use equipment and what to eat before working out to maximize your summer bootcamp, starting now!