If you’ve zeroed in on the perfect bikini for this summer, you’ll want to make sure your body is tight and toned. Swimsuits can be unforgiving, so insure yourself against any boo-boos with these expert tips.
According to Pooja Makhija, consulting nutritionist at Clay Wellness, Bandra, one of the key mistakes people make in the summer is supplementing water with sweetened beverages. “You might feel that you’re not getting enough hydration with just water, so you’ll opt for fruit juices or fresh lime sodas for refreshment. But those empty calories are high in sugar content, which will show up on your problem areas like hips and stomach,” says Makhija. She adds that another error is skipping meals. “If you skip lunch because it’s too hot and you don’t feel like eating, you’ll be ravenous by evening and the resistance to unhealthy foods is lowered. You might reach out for a pakoda instead of fruit.” Makhija adds that the key is to eat smaller portions or substitute heavy food with lighter options. She reasons, “If you usually eat two rotis with rice, have only one. Or opt for soup and salad instead, which will leave you feeling full but not too heavy.”
Get fit fast
According to Namita Jain, clinical fitness specialist at Bombay Hospital, the key target areas for anyone looking to sport a swimsuit are the shoulders, chest and back, stomach, waist and legs. Jain assures that the whole process, with five minutes of warming up thrown in, shouldn’t take more than 15 minutes.
Stand with feet shoulder width apart and lean forward from the hip while holding a dumbbell in each hand. Bend the elbow and lift arms up, keeping your elbows close to waist as you lift. Squeeze shoulder blades and lower. Repeat for 12-16 counts.
Lie on your back and bend knees placing feet on the ground. Place hands behind your head and raise shoulders off the floor contracting abdomninal muscles, before lowering. Repeat for 12-16 counts.
Stand tall, holding a dumbbell in each hand. Bend sideways to the right and straighten up again. Do 12-16 reps on right and repeat on left.
Stand straight and slowly lower your hips as if sitting on an imaginary chair. Make sure knees don’t extend over toes. Repeat for 12-16 counts.
For women, try a simple wall pushup. Stand about six inches away from the wall, with your feet shoulder width apart and place palms on the wall. Bend the elbows, bringing chest closer to the wall before pushing back. This tones the arms too. Repeat for 12-16 counts.
Stand tall, holding dumbbells in each hand. Bend your elbows so your hands are almost at ear level. Extend arms upwards and lower to the side. Repeat for 12-16 counts.
Bold enough to flaunt it
Kareena Kapoor claims she’ll never wear a bikini onscreen again. But if recent sales are to be believed, it seems the bold, brassy bikini is the swimsuit of choice for the country’s pool party animals. Preeti Shirke, store manager Karma Kola, says that of the 25-odd swimsuit varieties that they’ve ordered, most are bikinis. “For women in the age group of 16-25, most want to wear bikinis. Very few customers come looking for one-piece swimsuits, and most of them are much older,” she says.
Bold is beautiful
“People have become bolder,” says a representative from Mango, adding, “We see a lot of young mothers and professionals coming in search of sexier swimwear.”
Designer Malini Ramani says, “Bollywood movies are a good example of how people view trends and you can see the number of actors sporting bikinis on screen.”
Adding that the age group of bikini babes is between 16-45, she emphasises, “People are taking care of their bodies, so they take to bikinis more.” Even swimwear manufacturers like Ajay Rajpal’s Mezzaluna have reported a drastic increase in the number of bikinis ordered and sold. “When I came to India three years ago, we would sell not more than 20 pieces a month. But now, we do a business of over 150 a month,” he says.