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Getting Beach Ready

May 29, 2021 at 1:00 PM EST.

Spring has sprung- and summer’s kicking off. If your New Year’s Resolutions of getting fit before you hit the beach lasted about as long as your Christmas tree did, you may think it’s too late. But while it might not be realistic to drop 20 pounds and gain a 6 pack before you head to the beach, there are still some little tricks that may help you. Follow these 5 tips right before a beach trip to guarantee you’ll look better in your bathing suit.

Tip #1: Work out.

The most obvious answer for looking better on the beach is working out. But if you’re hitting the beach in just a week, you may think it’s too late and just skip the workout for the week. Don’t. You can drop one to two pounds in just a week if you reduce your calories and ramp up your work out. Exercise experts recommend short 20 minute workouts- high-intensity, short routines that combine strength, cardio, endurance, balance and flexibility.

Tip #2: Don’t overdo it.

While you may be tempted to work out like crazy a week before a beach vacation, just remember not to overdo it. Overtraining can actually trick your body into holding on to fat. If you’re dieting and over-exercising, you can create an overstressed system. Your body reads it as a signal to hold on to stored fat, because it doesn’t know when it’ll be fed again- or how much energy it’ll need to maintain your workout schedule.

Tip #3: Watch out for bloating foods.

It’s common knowledge that eating salty foods can bloat you, but did you know that some vegetables can do the same thing? Staying away from high fiber foods vegetables like broccoli, cauliflower, Brussel sprouts and kale can be a good idea the week before a beach trip. Fiber is usually a great food for losing weight, but keep your serving sizes small just before an event to prevent belly bloat.

There are also foods that actually work in the opposite direction. Certain fruit, like pineapples, papayas and bananas help beat puffiness. These fruit contain bromelain and papain- enzymes that help de-bloat by breaking down protein and decreasing fluid retention.

Tip #4: Take your time when eating.

While you’re staying away from bloating foods and chomping on bloat-beating foods like pineapple, remember to eat slowly. Eating fast can cause you to swallow air- that gets trapped in your digestive system. Having a digestive system full of air doesn’t lend to a flat belly.

It’s also important to eat slowly so that you don’t over-eat. It can take up to 20 minutes for your brain to send signals telling your stomach that it’s full. Research says that people take in fewer calories when they slow their eating pace. A recent Japanese study also concluded that eating slowly led participants to feel full sooner- therefore consuming less calories during meals.

Tip #5: Take a salt bath.

Experts suggest adding two cups of Epsom salt to your bath and soaking for about a half an hour. The salt pulls water out of your body, and the less water you retain, the less bloated you’ll look. Just don’t do it every day- the salt bath trick is one you should save for special days, like right before heading to the beach.

If you don’t feel like soaking in a hot Epsom salt bath in the middle of the summer- try a sweaty workout. In the same way that a salt bath pulls water out of your body, so does sweating up a storm. An intense workout- whether it’s running, jumping rope, hot yoga, or any physical activity that makes you sweat- is another great way to eliminate excess water, and make you look less bloated.