Summer starts this weekend here in NYC
And even though our clients have been dedicated all winter—getting strong and taking care of their bodies—they still want to know how they can look and feel their very best at the pool or on the beach. They want to have fun without completely falling off.
And who can blame them for their concern? The warm weather comes with more than it’s fair share of implied indulgences like ice-cream and outdoor brunching; rooftop happy hours and patio parties.
So, if you too are worried about undo-ing your year-long progress, have no fear! We asked the bossman to give us his best tips for navigating summer weekends with satisfaction and confidence…and um—minimal damage to the physique.
Don had so much wisdom to share, that we had to split it into two separate articles. This post is all about the BEFORE: what to do in the week leading up to a holiday, getaway, or special event weekend. Because at Drive, we’re all about planning ahead for success—particularly when it involves showing off our hard work in the newest swim styles.
It can be very easy to kick off your sensible heels, change into your seersucker, and leave all your reserve behind. However, forgetting yourself and what your body needs to feel good for weekends at a time, can kill your energy and your progress—especially when alcohol is involved. Don says to choose one event to really let loose. Asses your social calendar and mark the most appropriate gathering. Have that sugary margarita you’ve been dreaming of. Grab a cheeseburger right off the grill. And then the rest of the weekend, eat within your usual more health conscious parameters. BONUS: Having predetermined “cheat days” can help you make better choices overall. Knowing you have planned indulgences can help you say no to those everyday temptations like that box of donuts someone left in the break room. Because hey!You’ve got the weekend coming up.
Focus on giving your body what it needs most. Don advises to prioritize getting all the quality proteins and greens that you can—even finishing them off your plate first to optimize digestion. Fill in with healthy fats, and carbs as necessary.
Just remember, eating zero carbs or very low amounts of carbohydrates is not advisable for longer than about a week. Prolonging this leaner style of eating can be particularly stressful for women. So, you’ll want to listen to your body, monitor your energy expenditure, and tailor your meals to that information.
DRINK MORE WATER
In the summertime, we tend to just spend more time outdoors anyway; whether it’s partying it up poolside or simply opting to walk to work while making the most of the season. To account for this increased activity and to optimize digestion, Don says to increase your current daily water intake by about 20oz. Staying adequately hydrated can also help you make better decisions. Think struggling between that handful of fruit that could give you better energy or that extra cup of coffee you probably don’t need. Drink more water!
ADD QUICK CARDIO FINISHERS
You don’t have to get on the treadmill and pound away for hours to get some major fat-loss results. In fact, you can get way better ROI by simply adding five to ten minutes of more intense cardio intervals at the end of your normal workouts. Don advises to add one such sweat session to each day leading up to the big weekend.
One of our favorite finishers at 495 is ten second sprints at max speed at the top of every minute for ten minutes. This treadmill or hill workout is great for more advanced trainees. But you can also try a slightly less intense version like 20sec of kettlebell swings or a 30sec row at the top of the minute. Mix it up. Get creative. Have fun.
AVOID EXCESS STRESS
Preparing for a long weekend of fun can easily turn into a lost week of stressing over how you look. Chances are, if you’re already concerned enough about your body to read this article, you’re on the right track. So, Don says “Keep your head down and focus on making one decision at a time.”
These are very wise words to be in the moment because more recent studies confirm, that carrying around internal stress actually helps you carry around about 10% more water, and also inhibits fat-loss. If you want to look your best, focus on feeling your best.
Later this week, we’ll be dropping Don’s tips for how to RECOVER from that big night out.