First things first ladies, you don’t need a perfect body to wear a bikini. In fact, the perfect body doesn’t even exist. There’s no miracle diet or exercise that will make you look like the photoshopped models that flood your Instagram feed. In reality, a great bikini body is about confidence, and this bikini body guide can help you get there.
Body confidence comes with health. The more effort you make to take care of yourself, the more comfortable you’ll feel in your own skin. It’s a two-part approach, I’m talking about how you treat your physical body, and how you treat your mind. This bikini body guide contains all my tips and tricks to help boost your confidence and feel like a total babe in your bathing suit.
Bikini body guide part 1: The body
It might come as no surprise to hear that the health of your body is far more important than how it looks. But what that looks like can vary. As women our bodies come in all shapes and sizes, and skinny doesn’t necessarily mean healthy. Your genes, bone structure, and lifestyle all play a role in the shape of your body, and regardless of what shape that may be, you can definitely a rock a two-piece swimsuit. That being said, I do understand what it’s like to feel insecure or self conscious about how you look. And though I’m totally of the belief that you should love yourself no matter what, it’s okay to want to improve your health or work to achieve certain body goals. It’s about how you get there that matters.
1. Eat healthy food
Whether you’re insecure about your tummy, your butt or your thighs, what you eat is important. If you want to feel confident in your bikini you’ll definitely want to skip the bloating, and feel nourished. To do this, I want you to eat healthy whole foods including leafy greens, veggies and fruit, lean protein and healthy fats. Ditch the processed junk, added sugar and foods high in sodium. They make your body hold on to water and are hard to digest.
If you’re trying to lose weight, stay far away from crash diets. They don’t work and they can even be dangerous. It may be a bit of a slower transition, but cleaning up your eating habits will help you lose weight and keep it off longterm. Try eating smaller meals more frequently to avoid snacking on calorie dense foods and keep your metabolism revved up.
Think simple, and eat plenty of salads, smoothies or stir-fries to get your 10 servings of veggies in per day, and boost your fibre intake. Your tummy will feel better and you’ll be able to feel energized without feeling deprived.
2. Limit alcohol
Summer means beach parties and barbecues, and with both of those the drinks are usually flowing. While a drink once in a while won’t hurt you, alcohol is packed with empty calories. With seven calories per gram it’s far too easy to go overboard with just a few drinks. Drinks like beer, cider or carbonated mixers can also leave you bloated.
If you want something a bit more exciting than water when you’re out with your friends, try making fruit-infused water, or grab a kombucha. You can also make healthy mocktails, or sugar-free homemade iced tea for a refreshing summer’s drink.
3. Exercise regularly
Bikinis have a way of making it feel like everything is on display, especially the parts we’re insecure about. So of course exercise fits into this bikini body guide. But I’m not here to give you a quick-fix workout plan. Shaping your body, whether it’s losing weight or toning up takes serious hard work, dedication and patience.
Targeting fat loss is a myth, so if you want results, you need to commit to a regular workout routine. You can use bikini season as a tool for motivation, but you’ll also need to set other goals to keep you going year-round. If you’re trying to lose weight, I recommend incorporating HIIT training into your workout plan for efficient fat burning (alongside healthy eating).
Just remember that exercise doesn’t need to be a chore, nor should you look at it as a punishment to tackle body issues you have. Exercise to take care of your body and keep it healthy. Stick with it by finding something that you love. Do a home workout program with a friend, join a dance class or try out a yoga class. There are a ton of fitness options out there, and if you don’t know what you like, try them all until you find something that sticks.
Bikini body guide part 2: The mind
The most important thing that you can take from this bikini body guide is to spend time creating a healthy mindset. It’s the difference between feeling totally confident in your bikini versus nervous or insecure about every curve of your body.
Let me get real with you for a second. All the flaws that you see in yourself are blown out of proportion. People outside of you don’t notice or criticize things as much as you think they do. Most of the time, our minds are our own worst enemies.
Self love is a practice that needs to be consistent. It takes time and patience to change that negative inner dialogue and feel confident in yourself. You’re the only one that can do it for yourself, and now is a great time to start.
1. Repeat positive affirmations
A positive affirmation is something complimentary or loving that you repeat to yourself. Perhaps you say it when you look in the mirror, or you write it on a post-it note and stick it to your fridge for a daily reminder. It can be as simple as “you’re a babe” or more personal such as “the only validation that I need is my own”. The more constant these positive affirmations are, the sooner they’ll become second nature. Obsessing about little things to do with your appearance will become a thing of the past, and you’ll learn to be more comfortable in your own skin.
2. Stop comparing yourself to others
No matter how perfect someone’s life appears from the outside looking in, we all have things that we struggle with. One of the most important lessons you can learn from this bikini body guide is to stop comparing yourself to others, and embrace where you are in your own journey. That can apply to any aspect of life. If it’s fitness, feel grateful for what you have accomplished and love yourself flaws and all. Be excited for the goals you’ll hit in the future and the new things that your body will learn to do.
3. Practise visualization
If you struggle with getting out of negative thought patterns, visualization is a great tool to try. It’s especially great for those times that we build something up in our mind to the point of being stressed out before it even happens. Most of the time in reality, things aren’t as bad as we imagined they might be. If you’re nervous about heading to the beach in your bikini, take a moment to visualize what that will look like. Will your friends be excited to see you? Would they say mean things to you about how you look? Chances are, if they’re good friends, they won’t criticize you, and they’ll be thrilled to see you. In most situations, you’ll be glad you took the leap of faith to give it a chance and go.
Love your #innerbabe
Wearing a bikini shouldn’t be stressful. If your friends, or even strangers, are going to say anything critical to you, they’re not real friends, nor are they worth your time. Start giving yourself some love, and surround yourself with positive supportive people. Our #innerbabe community is all about that, so hop on over and join the conversation.
P.S. Wearing a bikini doesn’t have to be an itty bitty thing. There are so many different styles of two-piece bathing suits that can work with different body types. They can help play up your great features and draw less attention to the areas you’re more self conscious about. If you’re still worried, take a deep breath in, and deep breath out. You’ve got this.
Do you feel confident wearing your bikini? Share your experience with us in the comments below.