Siobhan Byrne: Get in great shape for the holidays
Going abroad or stay-cationing? In a four-part series, our fitness expert can help you prepare
For most people, the milder weather brings with it thoughts of those looming summer holidays, and the panic about losing a bit of weight starts to set in.
In my vast experience as a trainer, I can tell you that quick fixes do not work. If you want lasting results and to avoid adding half a stone in weight as soon as your holiday is over, you need to plan your exercise and eating regime and, importantly, be realistic about your expectations.
This week, we will embark on a four-part series to help you get set for summer. You should know that at the outset that it is only possible to lose or gain a maximum of 2lbs of body fat per week - therefore, a realistic timescale for losing half a stone of body fat is at least four to five weeks. Ditch the crazy diets once and for all and stick to a simple plan that you will and can stick to.
One of the biggest problems people face when embarking on a weight loss programme is they adopt too ambitious a regime as far as their diet and exercise is concerned. Soon, it becomes impossible to maintain and, disheartened, they give up without seeing true and sustainable results.
Okay, if you wanted to you can follow the diets that will see you drop a stone in a matter of weeks, but one thing is for sure - it's only water loss and as soon as you resume normal eating habits it goes back on.
Choosing healthier foods, keeping an eye on portion size and taking small and regular amounts of exercise will make a lasting difference - and there is more probability of you sticking to this healthier lifestyle in the long term, giving you lasting results.
So how do you begin? Start with a pen and paper and map out your week; ask yourself how much time you have to exercise and decide when is best for you to do it. Start with small amounts in the first week and build it up, week by week, only if you can stick to it.
Analyse the types and amount of food you eat by starting a food diary. Join me next week for the second part of Get Set for Summer.
Do each exercise 12 times before moving on to the next one. When you have completed each exercise, that is one set. Catch your breath before moving on to the next set, and do three to four sets, three to four times a week
Get set for summer: Part 1 of 4
Curtsey lunge with calf raise
1/ Start by standing upright with feet hip-width apart.
2/ Step behind and across into a curtsey, lowering your body down towards the ground.
3/ Push off the front foot to return to the start position, then come up onto your toes into a calf raise, elevating your heels off the ground. Complete all reps on one side first before changing to the other side.
1/ Start by going into a squat position with your hands on the ground.
2/ Then, from there, thrust both legs out and back to full extension. Return to the start position and repeat.
* Ensure that you keep your tummy tight and do not let the lower back dip when your legs are extended.
1/ Start by leaning back, balancing on your hands, in a sitting position with your knees bent and your feet slightly off the ground.
2/ Simply lift your upper body towards your knees and raise your knees to your chest at the same time, coming into a V position. Return to start position, then repeat.
Modified slide out on knees
1/ Start on your knees and hands on sliders, in a plank position.
2/ Gently slide one hand out, extending it, then returning to start position.
3/ Then extend out the alternating arm. Repeat.
Health & Living