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5 Fast Ways to Slim Down for Summer

By Sandy Schroeder

Summer is coming up quickly. We can almost feel the breeze, but wait, what about all of those body bulges that still need to be tamed?

Womenworking.com and anytimefitness.com suggest easy ways to get moving to look and feel better. Check them out and then check in with your doctor for approval before you begin new exercises.

Run to work the whole body - Get your heart rate up and go for a runner’s high. Start gradually and run regularly to burn calories and build strength. Begin with short runs mixing in jogging, sprinting and walking. Pick up a workout buddy and keep the momentum going.

Squat to firm the bottom - Squat every day and gradually add dumbbells or barbells. You should see the difference in a firmer bottom and thighs. Incorporate squats into a daily early morning workout and enjoy the difference.

Swim to limber up the whole body - Swimming improves back, arms, glutes and legs while it burns calories. Swimming is fun for the whole family as a low-impact workout for muscles and joints. It lifts the mood and lowers stress. Swim indoors in a heated pool, at home, or outdoors in your favorite spot. Complete the day with a picnic or simple supper.

Planks strengthen the core - Start in a push-up position on the floor or mat. Bend elbows to 90 degrees and rest weight on the forearms with elbows beneath shoulders. Body should be in a straight line from head to feet. Hold for 30 seconds.  Start slowly if you have never done planks. Work the abdomen, lower back, hips and arms. Avoid lowering hips, arching back, or tilting head upward. My yoga instructor recommends planks as the best single exercise to do daily.

Master the wall sit - Strengthen glutes, calves and thighs. Make sure the back is flat against the wall. Feet should be shoulder-width apart about two feet from the wall. Slide the back down, bending knees to a 90-degree angle with knees above ankles. Contract abs and hold. Lean against the wall slowly returning to standing position. If the wall sit is hard to do, try a 45- or 30-degree angle between thighs and body with a shorter time. If there is knee pain, stop and see your doctor, chiropractor, or trainer.

Start with your doctor to get approval for new exercises, and then consider working with a trainer to get the form right from the start.

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Chicago, Ill.

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