Fall bod is a real thing…here’s how to do it right.
Summer is over. As sad as it is to see it go, I think a lot of us are ready for leaves to change colors and temperatures to drop. One of the best things about fall is the ability to let ourselves go just a bit because we won’t be seen shirtless until next summer (mirror selfies on IG don’t count). Fall and winter body is a real concept, but how far is too far?
First, you want to be realistic with yourself. If you’re striving for a certain fitness goal, the season and time of year don’t matter if you still haven’t reached your goal. Just because you’ll be wearing a sweater doesn’t mean you can slack off. This is for the people who are at the gym constantly working on their six pack and lean body mass.
Why Gain Weight?
The fact of the matter is that more meat on your bones will absolutely keep you warmer in the winter months. If you live in a place where you can expect snow, packing on a few extra pounds isn’t a bad idea. It will keep you warmer, more comfortable, and therefore more functional once the temperatures really drop. If you live in a place where it doesn’t get below 60 degrees, maybe let yourself gain around 5 pounds, but anymore than that is too much and really just laziness.
How to put on weight may seem obvious, but properly bulking up doesn’t mean that you can suddenly reopen yourself to multiple donuts and tons of craft beers. Try to pack on the extra 8-10 pounds by increasing your food intake with similarly healthy items to what you eat during summertime. Add some more protein and healthy fats like chicken, turkey, and avocado. This will increase your mass but not cause you to crash or feel lethargic because of your diet.
If you struggle with increasing your dietary intake, get a weight gaining powder that will easily allow you to take in some extra calories each day.
What to Avoid
Avoid allowing yourself to eat everything in sight. If you’re indulging in too many unhealthy fats and sugars, you will lose motivation to continue working out and staying healthy. Also avoid gaining TOO much weight. By adding 5-10 pounds to an otherwise healthy frame, you won’t be altering your body chemistry enough to make any long term impact. It’s enough weight that by the time spring rolls around, you’ll be able to cut it with no real problem through diet and exercise.
Use your clothes as a barometer. If you’re gaining enough weight to where your clothes are tight, you’re gaining too much. Be sure that your clothing still fits and you’ll be just fine.
Don’t skip abs. Just because you won’t be going shirtless doesn’t mean you should neglect your core workouts. Maybe you can cut back a bit on reps or weight, but be sure you’re still working your core muscles as they’ll have a big impact on keeping you safe and upright on slippery sidewalks during the winter.