Not only do Olympians have extraordinary athletic prowess, but it also goes without saying that they have amazing (and hard-earned!) bodies. Celebrity trainer Harley Pasternak (his clients include Megan Fox, Kate Beckinsale, and Rihanna) recently told People.com that his appreciation for an Olympian’s toned body (sprinter Ben Johnson, who ended up later testing positive for steroids) is what actually motivated him at a young age to hit the gym. He also shared ways regular folks can get an athlete’s body (or at least drop a few pounds).
Here, our favorite of his tips.
Focus on your goal
Pasternak says: “Never lose track of why you’re training. For an Olympian, it’s a medal. For you, it may be to look good in a bikini.”
To stay focused on your goals, try keeping a journal. Why it might help: a recent study in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics found women who had food journals lost about six extra pounds than those who had not. What a difference keeping track of your goal makes!
Eat to win
Pasternak says: “While Olympians eat to help their performance (a win for them), you need to eat to look amazing (a win for you).”
While a weight lifter may drink protein shakes and eat energy bars to get an edge, you’ve got to eat those foods that will make you a success, like lean protein and whole grains. Also, fiber is key to feeling full and supplying you with energy; Pasternak tweets, “Trader Joes fiberful peanut butter bar is very impressive. with 9 grams of fiber, you’ll be….. regular.”
Grab your friends
Pasternak says: “A friend (or spouse) can make for a great training partner. You will push each other and create some accountability.”
We’ve all seen how much fun it looks when U.S. Olympic swimmers like Missy Franklin, Elizabeth Beisel, and Dana Vollmer practice, judging by their viral “Call Me Maybe” video. So take a page from their book, and work out with friends. Research from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine shows that exercising with a partner may provide psychological benefits and make your gym session more enjoyable.