The Science (and Art) of Body Transformation: How to Get the Body of Your Dreams
Whether you want a beach body or the body of a boxer, you can get it. Here’s a comprehensive guide on how to get the body you want.
If you’re like half of all Americans, you want to lose weight. And maybe you want to do more than just drop a few pounds; you want to get the body of your dreams, like the ones you see athletes and other famous people flaunting.
Body transformations take time, hard work, and patience, but they can be done. Here is how to get the body you want.
Develop a Positive Mindset
“Whatever the mind can conceive and believe, it can achieve,” said Napoleon Hill, a self-help author best known for his book Think and Grow Rich. Before you begin your journey towards the body of your dreams you have to make sure you have a positive attitude about it. If you don’t believe that you can have it, then you’re sabotaging your chances of success right from the get-go.
Hold a vision of your ideal body in your mind for a moment each day, and believe that it’s yours. Ask yourself how you would feel if you had a fit, healthy body. Chances are you would walk differently and would feel more confident throughout the day when interacting with people.
Make a vision board filled with positive images and affirmations clipped from magazines or printed from the internet. You may want to include photos of people with the ideal body you have in mind to inspire you and photos of clothing you want to wear when you reach your goals. Make it a daily ritual to look at your board for a few minutes every day and affirm that it’s your reality.
Developing a positive attitude usually doesn’t happen overnight, so take some time to get your mindset strong. Most importantly, get to a place of believing you can transform your body before you start making changes to your exercise routine and diet.
Ease into Working Out
If you haven’t exercised in some time, it’s important not to push your body in the beginning. Otherwise, you’ll end up with overly sore muscles (or an injury) that can discourage you from working out regularly. Start with baby steps: a 15-minute walk around the neighborhood, or a small number of reps with hand weights and floor exercises.
Remember that bodybuilders and athletes didn’t achieve their current level of physical fitness overnight. You want to slowly build your stamina by gradually increasing weights and the amount of cardiovascular exercise you do every week.
Don’t get discouraged if you can’t complete a DVD or YouTube workout. If the best you can do right now is the first ten minutes, then give yourself a pat on the back for accomplishing that much. You can always try completing the first 15 minutes the next time and working your way up from there.
Try Something New
Workout boredom can derail your dream body goals, so always be on the lookout to try something new to spice up your exercise routine. Try a new machine or class at the gym, or join a running or pickle ball group. Or take a cue from childhood and strap on some roller skates, jump rope, or see how long you can keep a hula hoop spinning.
Exercise should be fun, and there’s no rule that says you can only get your dream body by sticking to the same types of workouts. Experiment with all kinds of outdoor and indoor physical activity so that you’ll look forward to getting your heart rate up.
Focus on Lean Protein
While you should change your eating habits so that you’re getting a balanced diet of meat, produce, grains, and dairy every day, you’ll want to make sure you’re consuming enough lean protein sources. Protein helps keep you fuller longer and builds muscle, which is important when you’re lifting weights. Lean protein ensures you’re not consuming too much fat with your meals.
Good sources of lean protein include poultry, grass-fed beef, salmon, sardines, tuna, eggs, cheese, chickpeas, beans, and legumes. Soy products such as tofu and tempeh also pack a low-fat protein punch.
Eat a Healthy Breakfast
Although there are conflicting studies about whether eating breakfast can help you lose weight, one thing is certain: fueling your body in the morning keeps your blood sugar steady until lunchtime, and provides energy. It also helps prevent binging on snacks and consuming extra calories later on.
But the key here is to choose protein and nutrient-rich foods for that first meal of the day. Sugary cereals and doughnuts won’t fill you up and will cause your blood sugar to spike and crash.
Make breakfast meals from good protein sources such as eggs, turkey bacon, and cheese. Unsweetened oatmeal also makes a healthy option if you fortify it with nuts and fruit and sweeten it with a bit of maple syrup or brown sugar. The high fiber content will also keep you sated throughout the morning hours.
Remember to eat whole fruit, which contains fiber, with breakfast instead of sugar-packed fruit juices.
Don’t Beat Yourself Up If You Get off Track
At some point as you work towards your body goals, you’re probably going to overindulge in high-calorie food, have one too many drinks, or skip a few workouts. That’s okay! Just don’t beat yourself up over it and resolve to get back on track as soon as possible.
Also, you should give yourself a cheat day every once in a while to enjoy your favorite food and beverages.
Remember to Remain Realistic
It’s important to stay realistic while working towards your body goals, because everyone is built differently. If you’re 5’2″, accept that you’re never going to have a tall body like Karlie Kloss. However, you should focus on staying strong and what your body can do versus what it looks like.
And if you need a little extra help losing that last stubborn bit of body fat after achieving your weight loss goals, know that treatments such as non-surgical body sculpting can add the finishing touches to your dream body.
Know How to Get the Body You Want
Knowing how to get the body you want the right way will give you confidence as you transform yourself. Follow the tips above and you’ll be rocking that swimsuit at the beach before you know it.
For more tips to help you always look and feel your best, visit our health section.