Fitness

Tone your bum and tum in 3 weeks

Tone your bum and tum in 3 weeks

The workout

The countdown is on to look and feel leaner for summer, so we’ve teamed up with Virgin Active personal trainer Helen Russell to put together a three week saviour plan for you to follow, in which you will do four workouts per week, one focusing on the legs, one on the upper body, one on your glutes and finally, one working the whole body. Helen recommends doing the workouts on a Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday and practising yoga, Pilates or steady cardio on the Wednesday, Saturday and Sunday. Don’t forget to stretch after every session!

As well as training hard, Helen suggests eating as clean and unprocessed as possible for the three weeks, consuming lots of vegetables, lean meats and good carbs, drinking plenty of water and reducing your alcohol intake – it will just make those holiday cocktails taste even better!
Let’s work out…

    • Workout 1: Legs

      Warm up: 5 minutes on a cardio machine, 10 narrow squats, 10 wide squats, 10 reverse lunges, 10 forward lunges
      5 rounds of: 10 leg press (with feet high on the press), 10 deadlifts, 10 press ups, 10 box jumps (skip this move if you need to avoid impact).
      5 rounds of: 20 barbell reverse lunges (10 on each leg, keeping the weight in your front heel), 15 kettlebell swings, 15 hamstring curls, 15 hip abduction machine
      3 rounds of: 10 hand to toe crunches (start lying flat then bring alternate legs up), 10 side plank dips, 30 seconds plank

    • Workout 2: Upper body and cardio

      Warm up: 5 minutes rowing machine, 10 arm circles backwards, 10 arm circles forwards, 10 push ups
      5 rounds of: 250m row, 10 push ups, 10 barbell row, 10 dips, 10 plank row
      5 rounds of: 400m run, 12 barbell shoulder press, 12 lat pulldown, 12 kettlebell clean and press
      3 rounds of: 30 mountain climbers, 10 crunches, 10 oblique crunches (each side)

    • Workout 3: Glutes

      Warm up: 5 minutes on a cardio machine, 10 narrow squats, 10 wide squats, 10 reverse lunges, 10 forward lunges
      5 rounds of: 20 hip abduction machine, 20 walking lunges, 15 kettlebell swings
      5 rounds of: 15 dumbbell Romanian deadlift, 15 cable kickback
      2 rounds on each side from lying side plank: 10 leg raises, 10 circles in each direction

    • Workout 4: Whole body

      Warm up: 5 minutes on a cardio machine, 10 wide squats, 10 reverse lunges, 10 push ups
      4 rounds of: 15 squat throw or wall ball, 15 kettlebell swings, 15 squat jumps (remove jump and add weight if you need to avoid impact), 10 push up to alternating knee touch
      4 rounds of: 20 thrusters (front squat to shoulder press), 20 side lunges (10 on each side)

      3 rounds holding a heavy kettlebell behind your head:
      10 straight leg lowers, 10 reverse curls (legs and hips off the floor), 10 knee tucks to legs extending

    The nutrition

    Being careful with your food choices is essential to your fitness results, but how can you sustain that trim tummy and pert posterior while you’re away and surrounded by delicious temptation? We spoke to health and nutrition expert Karen Cummings-Palmer (ambassador for STRIPPD’s range of whey and vegan proteins) about what to eat before your holiday and beyond…

    • Eating breakfast is essential for kickstarting your metabolism, boosting your ability to burn fat for a flatter tummy and peachier bottom. Start the day with good quality protein such as the humble egg, poached on avocado with a slice of rye bread for a nutrient dense classic or a protein shake with some greens and a handful of berries in the blender.
      While you’re away – take a few scoops of protein, such as STRIPPD, away with you for a low-calorie, protein rich breakfast that will keep your tummy flat and keep you away from the pastry basket.
    • Nutritious fat is most definitely your friend when it comes to banishing unwanted belly fat. Avocados and olives are particularly rich in oleic acid that can help regulate insulin levels, in turn regulating metabolic function and helping you to whittle down your waist.
      While you’re away – send back the bread and ask for some olives, most cafes and restaurants will have them. Do be careful not to eat too many though, as they are naturally high in salt which can cause bloating.
    • Raw apple cider vinegar helps rid the body of excess toxins, promoting smoother looking skin and taking the edge off hunger, making it the perfect mid-afternoon drink. Create a super tonic by adding a tablespoon to warm water with a teaspoon of anti-inflammatory turmeric and a little raw honey.
      While you’re away – ask for the juice of half a lemon and drink with warm water before breakfast. The alkalising lemon juice helps the body’s natural detoxification process.
    • Seaweed is rich in iodine, which can balance thyroid function and boost your metabolism, both great for a flatter tummy.
      While you’re away – if seaweed salad isn’t on the menu then try the local seafood on offer. Shrimp and lobster are particularly rich in iodine.
    • Asparagus is one of the most nutrient rich vegetables on the planet, full of skin enhancing zinc, vitamins A, C and E and potassium, which helps flush out excess fluid.
      While you’re away – asparagus is only in season for a few short sweet months from late spring to mid summer in the UK so enjoy it on your summer holidays; it’s good for your waistline and if you’ve enjoyed a little too much wine it will also help your liver!
    • Wild salmon is rich in anti-inflammatory omega 3 – an essential fatty acid that not only helps break down excess fat and ease bloating, but will also support your skin hair and nails.
      While you’re away – if you can’t find wild salmon then mackerel is a great alternative, packing a powerful omega 3 punch at a fraction of the price. Order with salad for the perfect light dinner.
    • Green tea is rich in antioxidants and natural caffeine which will stimulate your metabolism, helping you to burn those pesky extra pounds around your belly. Look out for matcha, which has 10 times the antioxidant value of regular green tea, or try supplements containing green tea extract like STRIPPD Trim&Tone for a pre-holiday boost.
      While you’re away – caffeine will give you an energy boost so try having a cup of tea before diving into the pool or taking that Pilates class for a more intense tummy toning work out.

    Other tips:

    Another powerful but entirely painless way to help flatten your tummy is to chew. Good health starts in the gut, but only if your break down your food effectively first. So start chewing each mouthful at least 20 times and you’ll feel less bloated, less hungry and less hurried.
    Probiotics are a great summertime tool, as not only will they help with any digestive issues associated with travel, but they will ease bloating and help flatten your tummy so that you look and feel your very best when you hit the beach.
    In order to sustain your toned results, look to adopt these healthy habits in the long term and turn them into rituals to live by as opposed to a quick fix for summer

Health & Wellbeing