6 Ways to Get in Dating Shape  

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6 Ways to Get in Dating Shape

Getting back in the dating game? Get your mind set, and your body ready to greet the world with confidence.  A few simple fitness tips will help you shape up.  You’ll have a flatter tummy, shapelier arms, firmer legs, and you’ll look great in a little black dress.  But the benefits don’t stop there.  Being fit gives you a sense of empowerment along with a healthy glow.

1)         Bust out of a stale cardio routine:  Are you stuck on a weight plateau or in a metabolic rut?  Ramp up your program by creating a cycle of three workouts of different length and intensity.  Do each of the workouts twice a week using any cardio activity.  Be sure to add 5 minutes each for warm up and cool down.

  • High gear:  Sustain the fastest pace you can for 20 minutes
  • Interval training:  For 30 minutes alternate 2 minutes of high intensity pace with 4 minutes of active recovery.
  • Long, slow distance:  Use a steady, moderate pace for 60 minutes total.  If you can’t do it all at once, break it up into smaller doses of 15 minutes.

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2)         Do the heavy lifting:  Lift weights to tone up, burn calories and stay strong. Do a minimum of two weight training sessions per week on non-consecutive days.  Pick 8-10 exercises that work the major muscle groups.  Different methods achieve different results.  To build strength in muscles and bones, lift heavier weights and work in the 8-12 repetition range.  For a shaping and toning routine, using lighter weights and higher repetitions, do 12-15 reps per exercise. One set is enough to build and maintain strength, but more sets may deliver more dramatic results.

3)         Boost the bottom line:  Squats and lunges are the best exercises for shaping and firming the glutes in your buttocks.  Perform the front lunge and side squat in combination.  Lunge to the front with your right leg, then spring back to the starting position.  Now step to the side with your right leg and bend both knees into a squatting position. Repeat the combination on one side for 15 reps, then change sides.  Hold weights to add resistance.

4)         Pump yourself up for a date: Doing 15 pushups pre-date will plump up the muscles in your chest, shoulders and triceps to give you lovely contours in bare fashions or body-hugging knits. Try the kitchen counter push-up:  Stand an arms’ length away from the counter with your arms straight, hands 3-4 inches wider than your chest.  Pull your abs in tight so that your body is in a straight line.  Bend your elbows and lower your chest to the counter.  Exhale and push back to the starting position.

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5)         Flatten your belly:  Do this simple exercise:  Without moving your pelvis, draw your belly button toward your spine as if you were zipping up a tight pair of jeans. Whenever you pull your abs in, you are activating the deepest abdominal.  You often work this muscle without realizing it, for example to keep your back straight when doing a push-up or plank.

6)         Practice perfect posture:  No one likes a slouch!  Lengthen the spine with the back extension and open the chest and front of the shoulders with a few simple moves that you can even do at your desk. Interlock your thumbs and reach your arms overhead. Inhale and elongate through the torso, stretching the space between the ribs and the hips. Exhale and reach up and back, keeping your head between your elbows. Add a few more upper body stretches to relieve tension, refresh your mind and grow taller.

Make exercise a habit.  Find opportunities to move during the course of each day.  Small doses of exercise done consistently have a dramatic effect on your appearance and well-being.




  • Joan Pagano has specialized in strength training for women since 1988 – training, teaching, and writing books on the subject, including Strength Training Exercises for Women (DK, 2014). When the health benefits of strength training started making headlines in the 1990s, and in particular how weight training could protect the bones and prevent osteoporosis, it was a natural segue for her. At that time, Joan was developing and delivering fitness training guidelines for osteoporosis to national audiences of exercise professionals. Currently Joan is recognized by the industry as a leading authority on exercise program design for osteoporosis. She is certified as an Exercise Physiologist by the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) and is on the Ambassadors Leadership Council for the National Osteoporosis Foundation. Visit Joan at: www.joanpaganofitness.com/

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