I saw this quote the other day that was talking about how summer bodies are made in the winter. I rolled that around for a few minutes while I finished my Sea Salt and Caramel Gelato bar. My synapses made the connection and I realized that summer is right around the corner, despite the continued presence of these winter storms. When the snow melts, when the sun comes out and the temperatures start to rise, I don’t want to be among those lamenting that last bowl of ice cream.
I was looking at my news feed on Instagram the other day and saw where my girl, The Mocha Peach, re-posted a 90-Day swimsuit challenge. My curiosity was piqued. Truth be told, I’ve been feeling pretty okay about how I’ve handled the winter eating marathon that is Thanksgiving through Christmas. I haven’t gone completely off the rails, although some days do require an extra glass of wine or one or two more cookies for dessert. And even though I have a table for one on Pancake Saturday, I keep save my short stack for Saturday only.
So, why would I be interested in a 90-Day swimsuit challenge? Look, I want to feel and look good in my suit just like everyone else. I’m working out very regularly. I’m trying to eat realistically. For me that means, portion control and maybe cutting back on some favorite items. Cutting back, not cutting out, because that’s a sure way to find yourself scavenging in your own pantry at 10:30 at night for some kind of something to satisfy whatever craving you’ve been having all day. But I digress. . .
I want to feel like “Yes, I put in the work. I did what was in my power to do and I’m going to wear this bathing suit!” AND — there’s more — more importantly, I’m not going to worry about it beyond making sure I’ve got the top on right-side up. True story: last time I wore a bikini, I had the triangle top on upside down the whole time. #yolo.
Like most people with most things, I’m trying to get the results I want without having to do a whole lot to get there. So, I visited Val at Fabulous Chick Gets Fit, and Marcy at Will Run 4 Beer, and Jess at Operation Skinny Jeans to see how to make this happen. Were they going to recommend a certain meal plan? Was it going to be something like “Squat Your Way Into Your Bathing Suit”? Was it going to be a Couch to 5K type of program?
I couldn’t have been more wrong. Guess how the 90 day swimsuit challenge works?
Work your ass off for the 90 days leading up to summer to look amazing in your swimsuit of choice.
Work your ass off. Literally. And you know what? I laughed out loud because *head slap* that’s what you’re supposed to do get swimsuit ready.
So, after I read a few more entries on their respective pages, confirming my belief in how down to earth these chicks were, I accepted their challenge. You all know that I’m already up in the gym as part of my routine. I’m not sure how much more I can do, but I am going to re-evaluate what I am doing to kick up the intensity for the 90 days. It may include some push-aways from the table. I’ve already given up wine for Lent (suprise!) and I’ve found a way to help me get over the boredom hump when I’m at the gym.
Like most folks, I come prepared with my iPad, iPod, iTouch, iDistraction of choice to help me slog it out and burn some calories. Usually, there’s some show that I can fire up on the iPad and focus on plot points rather than the burning in my legs as I climb to no where on the stairmaster. I get my fix of current events from online news outlets when I’m pedaling on the elliptical. When I’m on the treadmill or when I’m swimming laps, however, I can’t use those devices to help divert my attention from the task at hand. Thankfully, I can listen to music. I get kind of amped up when I’m hitting my stride and a beat-bumping jam comes through the headphones.
When I’m really trying to push through the wall on my workout, I dial up a groove that gets me moving. And then. . .I pretend I’m in the opening credits of an action movie.
Here’s an example. Two days ago, I was on the treadmill, working through Week 3, Day 2 of the couch to 5k program. Let’s pause for a second and celebrate that I’m actually running again! I’ve got the treadmill moving at a decent clip (6.3 mph, no incline, if you must know) and I’m feeling like I’m ready to dial it down. Part of my brain is urging me to continue at this pace for another two minutes. Right when I’m about to give a handful of reasons why that won’t happen, N.E.R.D’s She Wants to Move comes on. That bass line drops, my pace picks up and suddenly, I’m imagining myself in the opening montage of an action flick starring me as an undercover assassin going through her training regimen as she preps for her next assignment.
Yup, I’ve got a very vivid imagination. Whatever keeps you pushing through to the end, right?
While the song is playing, my arms are pumping and my feet are pounding. I’m dodging bullets, I’m in a high speed car chase leaving smoke and tire marks in my wake. You ever see that montage in The Transporter when Jason Statham’s character infiltrates the drug dealer’s compound and takes out all the henchmen with like a tablecloth, a wall scone and his bare hands? Let me refresh your memory:
Look, it could be a long 90 days. . .you gotta make it work for you.
What do you do to build your summer body and how do you stay motivated?