Back-to-school season is officially here, and if you're feeling a bit out of shape from all of those summer indulgences (think cocktail parties, BBQs, and lots of ice cream), I'm here to help you start fall on the right foot -- and have some fun while doing it.
1. Every little bit counts
People are often all or nothing when it comes to exercise, and think that if they can't hit the gym for an hour, it's not worth it. FALSE! Not being able to squeeze in a sweat session is not an excuse to do nothing. There are plenty of things you can do that don't require tons of time or equipment. Headed to class? Walk or park your car a little bit further than you normally would to get some extra steps in. Take the stairs instead of the elevator. Do some jumping jacks during a commercial break for your favorite show. Take a walk around the block after dinner. The little things add up, so make every effort to stay active.
2. College Students -- Take an Exercise Break In Your Dorm Room!
If you're swamped with studying and papers and don't have time to leave your desk, check out an exclusive workout I designed for CosmoBody, "Do It In Your Dorm Room." I know dorm rooms are crazy small, so I designed this workout just for college students, and you can crush it in the tiniest little dorm rooms in under 15 minutes. You need absolutely no equipment except for a simple desk chair. So go ahead, try this quick and effective workout, and watch the sweat pour!
3. Don't Diet, Just Make Smart Choices
If you're looking to shed a few pounds, a quick fix diet might help at first, but ultimately the weight will pile back on. Fad diets are not sustainable! My philosophy when it comes to being fit and healthy is simple: Eat well, sweat often and laugh your ass off. It's truly the magic trifecta to looking and feeling amazing without losing any of the fun along the way. Eat lean protein and veggies at breakfast, lunch and dinner, then keep the same principles with smaller portions for two snacks a day. What to do about carbs? Here's a top tip that I share with all my clients: If you're looking to slim down, eat the starchy ones only on days you're working out. Veggies and fruits can (and should) be enjoyed whenever you like. Most importantly, skip the fads and remember: simple is always best.
4. Make Dining Out A Touch Healthier
When it comes to eating out at a restaurant, the temptations are endless -- think bread basket, wine, and dessert. Good news is, you can still enjoy eating out, by making a few simple changes. First, choose ONE temptation and stick to it. Want a glass of wine? Have it. But, if you are going to indulge in some vino, pass up the bread basket and stick with a decaf skim cappuccino or herbal tea for dessert.
5. Have a Bad Day? Get Back on Track
Often times, we have a day where our eating or exercise gets off track, and use this as an excuse to engage in an all out eating frenzy. No one is perfect. We all have moments where we could have done better. The key is to not let one mishap capsize your entire ship. Acknowledge that you made a choice that was outside of your goals. Then, cut yourself a little slack and commit to making your very next choice a positive one that's in line with your goals. Can't resist some late night pizza with your roommates? Sleep it off, wake up, have a big glass of water, hit the gym, and make smart choices moving forward. When you make a wrong turn, the GPS doesn't tell you to stop and go back home. It redirects you. The same thing is true of eating and exercise. All you have to do is redirect yourself back toward the finish line.
Employ these five tips and be confident in your ability to stay strong when the going gets tough (trust me, it will). Remember, just relax. Being lean, healthy and fit isn't as complicated as most people think. Drink lots of water, eat well, and sweat often. And don't forget to laugh your ass off with your friends!
Also on HuffPost: