During the spring semester of a college school year, many college students spend more time at the gym to lose weight for spring break. Groups of students often plan to visit exotic locales, and much of their time will be spent in revealing bathing suits. If you start planning early enough, you can show off a new, slim body in your bikini or swim trunks.
First, make a realistic plan. Give yourself at least two months to get buff for spring break. If you’re trying to drop pounds, aim for a sensible weight loss of 1 to 2 lbs. per week. You’ll need to create a calorie deficit of 3,500 calories to lose 1 lb, so cut 500 calories each day to lose 1 lb. per week. If you’re only trying to build muscle, you’ll still need to give yourself ample time to see results. Expect to see results after about a month if you work out regularly and challenge yourself.
The hardest part of a diet is staying motivated, so try to think of ways to keep your mind on your goal. Post picture of celebrities in swimsuits around your dorm room or apartment. Research the area you’ll be visiting for spring break and make plans for what you’ll do when you get there. Ask a buddy who’s going with you if he’d like to be your workout partner. Buy a new, fashionable swimsuit and remind yourself of what you’d like to look like in it.
With your plan in place, come up with some healthy recipes that won’t take too much time to prepare during your busy study schedule. Take a trip to the grocery store for the necessary supplies. Stock up on staple ingredients, including whole grains, lean proteins, fruits and vegetables. Examples of whole grains include whole wheat bread or whole grain tortillas. For protein, buy fish, chicken or deli turkey. Purchase whatever fruits and vegetables look appealing to you, find more.
With your ingredients, make healthy, low-calorie meals, such as turkey sandwiches with low-fat cheese, spinach salad with light dressing or brown rice, grilled chicken and mixed vegetables. You’ll need to alter recipes slightly to make them low-calorie. For instance, if you’re used to having sandwiches with mayonnaise, try mustard instead. If you typically use Ranch dressing, consider a light vinaigrette.
Combine your diet with plenty of cardiovascular exercise. Use your school’s gym, or take up outdoor activities, such as cycling, swimming or kayaking. Your college may also offer group fitness classes, such as Zumba or yoga. It may be necessary to get 60 to 90 minutes of exercise a day to lose weight. Remember daily activities count towards physical activity. Walk to class to burn more calories. Don’t forget strength-training exercises to tone muscle. For instance, you can do crunches on an exercise ball to work your abs, or bicep curls to tone your arms.
Allow yourself an occasional treat if your diet becomes difficult, but don’t stray from your plan. If you crave chocolate, allow yourself an ounce of dark chocolate, not an entire slice of chocolate cheesecake. If all your friends are ordering pizza, stick to one slice, not four or five. By the time spring break rolls around, you’ll be glad you had the self-disciple to successfully lose weight.