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Shape up for summer!

With summer just over 10 weeks away, it’s time to get in shape so you can don your swimwear and hit the beach without having to worry about muffin tops and jiggly bits…

Check out these ideas to help you get ready for summer:

Loosen up your workout plan

The great thing about warmer weather is you can start ditching the winter clothes and do your cardio exercise outside! Stick a blank workout plan up on your fridge and fill in your exercise each day as you go; this will keep it visual so if you skip a day, you (and everyone else who sees your fridge!) will know it.

Instead of your planned workouts, spend 30 mins+ doing some kind of physical activity 3-5 days a week and you’ll be burning those calories in no time.

Warm weather outdoor activities to get you in shape

Summer means great outdoor swimming weather, so find a beach or pool and pratice your freestyle, breaststroke, backstroke, butterfly, or exercise your best doggy paddle! If you can’t swim, enroll in some learn to swim classes (it’s never too late to pick it up) or give waterwalking a go.

If you’d rather stick to dry land, go jogging along a beach (if you have a dog and they’re allowed, take them along with you – they’ll love you for it), go on a bushwalk or get some friends together and play frisbee in a park. You could even insert some ‘exercise stations’ into your jogs by picking strategic spots along your route to do some squats, lunges, pushups and crunches.

Keen to be a bit more adventurous? Find a mountain to climb (if you’re in Auckland, there are 48 volcanic cones in the area so there should be one near you somewhere!) or try your hand at a new sport.

Kayaking, rollerblading, bike riding, paddleboarding and blokarting are just some of the things you can have a go at; just make sure that if the sun’s out, you slather on the sunscreen so you don’t get burnt.

And if you’re a gym bunny…

Most people would rather spend time outdoors when the sun’s out and the weather’s great – but if doing something inside is necessary or what you prefer, try doing some weights to tone up those muscles and supplement your outdoor cardio activities. Get your gym instructor or personal trainer to advise you on a programme that will suit your body and goals. For lean toned muscle, you should be doing each exercise for around 10-15 reps (you can do 2-3 sets) and make sure you’re really finding the exercise tough by the end of the set. If it’s not difficult, the weights need to be put up or you need to do a more challenging exercise.

If you don’t belong to a gym, get some freeweights/dumbells. You can do some basic weighted squats and lunges, bodyweight push ups and crunches. Always ensure you have good posture and make sure you don’t overdo it – weights are about doing repetitive exercises to strengthen your muscles. Start off small and work your way up once your technique is perfect.

Image / FreeDigitalPhotos.net – photostock

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