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It is that time of year—the time of year where everyone starts talking about the shredded "beach body" that looks good in a bathing suit (and extra good with a tan). 

But if you're an athlete, you're likely more focused on building up your strength and endurance so that you can excel in summer sports. 

Whether you dabble in pickup basketball with your friends, play on a recreational soccer team, or are a serious marathon runner, you're an athlete that needs to work hard in order to rise above the competition (even if that competition is beating your own personal best). 

Here are a few fat burners that will make a huge difference in your body, and ultimately, your mindset.

Walking

Walking is the fat-burning exercise everyone likes to hear about, because who doesn't like to go on a nice outdoor walk? Regardless of whether you're a solo walk or walk-with-a-buddy type of person, walking is a convenient, fun, and even leisurely way to burn fat. 

In fact, Harvard Health estimates that a person weighing about 150 pounds burns around 167 calories every 30 minutes of moderately paced walking. 

Walking is easy to fit into your daily routine, and can be done on top of a strength workout on days you don't want to do high-intensity cardio. Plus, walking outside on a sunny day can provide you with tons of mood-boosting endorphins.

Jogging or Running

Jogging or running is walking's level-up. It's a more intense form of cardio that burns more calories and fat; it is estimated that a 150-pound individual burns almost 300 calories throughout each 30-minute run. 

Running can also help you build up your endurance to tackle that summer sport in the heat, as practicing running long distances or short sprints can help your lungs adjust to different types of cardio. 

Just make sure you're not running every day, as running — especially on the sidewalk — can be hard on your joints. 

Biking

Yes, you're probably aware of the Peloton bike that's all the rage these days. Peloton bikes are awesome, and if that's something you can afford, it's a great way to burn fat from the comfort of your home. 

But you can actually cycle outside too, which is a great way to exercise while enjoying the outdoors and experiencing new neighborhoods. 

Not only is cycling great for weight loss and endurance training, but it's a low-impact exercise that takes a ton of stress off your joints. For that reason, alternating between biking and running for your cardio workouts could be a good idea.

Weight Training

Contrary to popular belief, weight training three times won't cause your muscles to blow up into abnormal proportions. You won't look "bulky," but you will be a lot stronger and more prepared for your summer sports. 

Weight training burns calories during the workout, but it more so promotes muscle growth. Increased muscle growth raises your resting metabolic rate, or how many calories your body burns at rest. 

In other words, introducing weight training into your exercise routine will mean you burn more calories even when you're not working out. 

Interval Training 

You've probably heard of "HIIT," but you might not know what it is. HIIT, or High-Intensity Interval Training, refers to short periods (30 seconds to a minute) of intense exercise that alternate with slightly longer recovery periods. 

It can burn tons of calories (more than both running and cycling) and is especially effective at burning belly fat. So if you're looking to slim down for your summer sport while building strength and endurance, HIIT might be the workout for you. 

***

It's never too early to start training for summer (it's only three months away!) You want to look good, feel good, and perform at the highest level you can, and these exercises can help. 

So grab a buddy, your favorite hype-up music, and your exercise mat—and get to work. 

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