A healthy, summer-ready physique needs muscle and DAVE LAMBERT shows you how to get just that.
Let's face it - unless you've scored big-time in the genetics department, dieting and meal replacement shakes are not going to help you achieve a healthy bikini body.
To etch out a perfect beach body requires plenty of exercise, challenging yourself with weights and fuelling your body properly with unprocessed food.
And weight is irrelevant - the important thing is to feel confident, healthy and fit.
Dave Lambert, of Oxygen Health & Fitness in Kiama, which operates the Fit Chicks Club, says it all starts in your mind.
"It starts with your mindset first, that mind-body connection is more powerful than you think," Lambert explains.
"Get out of your comfort zone ... if it feels easy and comfortable, you're probably not going to transform your body.
"Don't be afraid of lifting challenging weights ... if you want sizzling metabolism, you need muscle ... and no, it won't make you look bulky," he said.
Lambert stresses that fuelling your body by eating more often, not less, is important.
"To free your body of cellulite and belly fat you must fuel your body with unprocessed whole foods every couple of hours to rev your metabolism," he says.
"When you starve yourself all that happens is your metabolism slows down."
And Lambert stresses that there's no need to keep your eyes on the scales.
"When you're confident, healthy, fit and you've got that slim waist, sexy thighs and gorgeous glutes, what you weigh is irrelevant," he says.
Lambert has chosen six key exercises that will kickstart girls on their way to a bikini body, enlisting the help of fit mother-of-two Renee Miller to show how it's done.
1. Deadlift. Most women are weaker in the muscles on the back of their body. The deadlift, more than any other exercise, corrects that imbalance. Stand with a barbell against your shins with feet hip-width apart. Squat down to grab the bar just outside your legs.
Tighten everything up from your shoulders down and grip the bar tight. Now, looking straight ahead, pull the bar straight up your shins as you stand.
Once the bar is past the knees, push your hips forward, squeeze your butt and pull your shoulder blades together to stand up tall and proud. This is perhaps the most useful exercise in existence.
2. Dumbbell lunge. Holding two dumbbells, stand with your feet hip-width apart. Take a long step forward until your front thigh is parallel to the ground. Keep your torso upright and eyes focused forward. Powerfully push your body back to the starting position, repeat with the other leg and continue alternating.
3. Push-up. Forget about doing push-ups on your knees again. This takes your core muscles out of the movement. If you struggle to perform push-ups on your toes, prop yourself up so your hands are about a metre off the ground. Your body should be about 45 degrees to the ground.
If you want to make the push up harder swap around so your hands are on the ground and your feet are elevated. Lower yourself until your chest is about 4 inches off the ground, without dipping your head. Keep your elbows close to your ribs.
4. Chin-up. Similar to the lat pulldown at the gym, it's a harder exercise for many to master but we're not looking for many reps to get a good training effect.
Work hard for about five reps and have a spotter help you by pushing your feet. Grab the bar about shoulder-width apart, palms facing you.
Pull yourself up towards the bar, squeezing your shoulder blades together as you go. Puff your chest out to meet the bar.
Lower your body slowly until your arms are straight.
5. Mountain climbers. If you're wondering why the ab crunch hasn't been thrown in it's because spine specialists now say sit-ups and crunches present more risk to your spine than reward, and there are better exercises to develop strength, stability and a slim, sexy waist.
Assume a standard sit-up position and draw your belly button towards your spine.
Draw your left knee towards your left forearm, pause, then return to the start. Alternate sides.
6. Squat press. Hold a barbell on the front of your shoulders with your elbows pointing straight ahead in front of you.
Allow the bar to roll from your palms to your fingers. Lower yourself into a squat position, keeping your torso as upright as possible.
As you stand back up from your squat, lower those elbows so the bar rolls back into your hands and press the barbell overhead.
You want to use the momentum from your squat to get that bar moving up into the press.
This total body exercise is a great finisher move to your workout that will leave you feeling like there's nothing left in the tank.
But it'll also produce amazing results.
For more details about the Fit Chicks Club, phone 4233 2963.