Nothing quite spoils sunning yourself on the sand, than feeling out of shape and self-conscious. Whilst I try and keep myself in good shape all year round I'm still prone to the usual winter weight gain and pre-summer holiday bikini anxiety!
So I'm putting myself into beachcamp for the next 3 weeks and invite you to join me! Even if you're not trying to lose weight, all the aspects of beachcamp will be aimed at promoting good health so still worth reading.
As with all the info I put on this blog this shouldn't be taken as individual dietary advice - if you want weight loss advice please contact a nutritional therapist and don't embark on any weight loss programme if you have any health problems or take any medication, without first consulting your doctor.
Ok so disclaimer over - letks get started!!
As with my usual philosophy on food they'll be no calorie counting or portion size restriction in Beachcamp - just some simple rules to follow. If you eat healthy food that you enjoy and eat in response to hunger your appetite will naturally regulate and excess weight should come off in a smooth and sustainable way. The rules will build on each other - and I'm going to start with a simple one!
So rule #1:
Drink a glass of water on waking and 15 minutes before every meal or snack and cup of caffeinated tea or coffee
We should all drink 1.5-2 litres of water a day but alot of people don't drink enough and pay the price.
Drinking insufficient water leads to poor concentration, impaired sports performance and headaches and impairs immune and detox function.
But what's this got to do with getting bikini ready? Well water is one of the essential inputs into the chemical reaction in your cells which burns fat or sugars to create energy. So if you're dehydrated you won't be able to burn fat as effectively as when you are properly hydrated.
Another reason this rule is so important is that when you're dehydrated your body will upregulate your appetite as food is a source of water. By drinking a glass of water before eating you will be making sure that your appetite is genuine and slightly down-regulating it.
It's a similar scenario with regards to tea and coffee - we usually reach for caffeine when we're feeling tired, but fatigue is very often due to dehydration as we don't have the necessary water to generate energy in our cells. Once you've had a cup of water and waited 15 minutes, as if by magic you probably won't need a coffee saving you money, unnecessary calories and reducing your caffeine intake which is good news for weight-loss (caffeine provokes insulin production which causes fat storage).