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How to get your body into shape in time for Spring Break

Rick Melo | Sports | February 6th, 2006

The Fitness Centre has been busier then ever as we continue to improve on previous years membership sales. The place gets so packed sometimes that you have no choice but to make friends with random people so that you can get through your workout. “Working in” with someone in between sets with the same machine/weights can help save a lot of time since most of the equipment is often in use. It's great to see so many familiar faces of those who have committed themselves to a consistent program. These people are four weeks strong into their New Years resolutions and it appears as though they aren't turning back.

But I'm starting to see a lot of new faces making their rounds at the Fitness Centre. I can smell the very reason why there has been such an increase in traffic; I smell two specific words that make every college kid grin with excitement and sigh in anxiety all at the same time; “SPRING BREAK”.

Everyone's got their trips booked to Cancun, Acapulco, Panama City, Florida and all the other Southern hot spots. College kids are grinning because they know they're in for yet again, one of the best weeks of their lives. They're also anxious because there's less then four weeks left to trim off some of those unwanted pounds on their waist lines. This is why I have come to think of February as the “panic period”.

Everyone is going MENTAL right now, it's awesome. People are heading in and out of the gym twice a day doubling up on cardio sessions. Girls are jogging their little hearts out on the treadmills knowing their bikinis are waiting in their closets. Guys are screaming while lifting agonizing amounts of weight, thinking those girls on the treadmills won't like them unless their jacked, let alone the Spring Break girls. In order to get the quickest results, let me fill you in on what helped me manage a weight loss of fifteen pounds in five weeks while maintaining the majority of my muscle mass.

Make friends with Quaker wheat oatmeal, because this is going to be your breakfast for the next four weeks. Use water to mix it with instead of milk, and throw some chocolate protein powder on top of it to give it some flavor if you'd like. Look to eat about another three or four meals throughout the day every three or four hours. Meals should consist of lean protein with a combination of low sugar starches (whole wheat rice or yams) and some veggies. Add spices to your meals to liven them up, but avoid typical sauces.

Your meal sizes will be modest in size to the point that you are satisfied for three or four hours. Avoid eating an hour before you go to bed and ensure you get eight hours of sleep each night. Drink LOTS of water.

As for exercise, make friends with cardio as well. First thing in the morning, you should do a 30 minute cardio session on an empty stomach. The key here is ‘empty stomach' because you can burn up to 300 per cent more body fat by performing your cardio this way. Feel free to eat your oatmeal breakfast soon after your cardio session.

Your weight training routine can remain the same, but focus on minimizing your rest time in between sets to help keep your heart rate up which will in turn burn up more calories. Also keep in mind that you can do abdominal exercises until your blue in the face but if your diet is shitty, expect shitty results.

There you have it; four monotonous weeks of eating and training with little room for error. Hey, if you want to improve your look as much as possible in just one month, you got to put in the hustle. Think “SPRING BREAK” every time you want to give up. Just don't be surprised after a slack week of madness if you end up looking more like you did around Christmas time.

For more great tips to get in shape for Spring Break, email Rick at
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