Ask The Expert: How Can I Look Slimmer In My Bikini?

Look slimmer instantly with this advice from a bikini and fitness competitor.

a bikini competition. Maureen is far left. Photo provided by JJS Photo Design.

a bikini competition. Maureen is far left. Photo provided by JJS Photo Design.

We wait for summer all winter long and then when it finally comes, the dread starts—it’s time to put on a bathing suit. Even if you’ve been working out all year, it can still feel odd showing skin for the first time in eight or so months. So we asked an expert for some tips on how to instantly look slimmer, without fasts, juice cleanses, or crash diets.

Maureen (Moe) Faherty oversees corporate wellness and fitness initiatives for a biotech company in Boston and is a personal trainer at Harvard Business School.  She is also a bikini contest competitor and finished in the top three in two competitions last year. You can find out more about Moe on her blog, Fitness MoeJo.

We asked Moe for some pro tips on how to look instantly slimmer in a bikini. Her answer (and some quick exercise tips) is below:

Stand tall: Good posture makes a huge difference in your appearance and can immediately give the illusion of being a few pounds slimmer. Pull those shoulders down and back, straighten up through the abs and pretend as though someone is pulling a string from the top of your head to the ceiling. You’ll also look and feel much more confident.

Posture Exercise Tip: Lean against wall with feet about six inches away from it. With arms at 90 degrees, press glutes, shoulder blades, head, arms, and back of hands into the wall. Slide arms up into a “Y” while keeping shoulder blades pressed into the wall, then pull elbows back down and in. Repeat 10 to 12 times.

Wear wedges: We all know that heels can do wonders for our legs but they’re not really practical to wear to the beach. A small wedge heel can have a similar impact, looks cute, and allows you to walk without getting stuck in the sand.

Legs Exercise Tip: Do 20 seconds of bodyweight squats, followed by 20 seconds of squat jumps, followed by 20 seconds of low squat pulses, as low as you can go; rest for 30 to 60 seconds and repeat twice.

Eat clean: It’s no fun feeling bloated on the beach, so do your body a favor and pack foods that are low-sodium, unprocessed and non-carbonated, such as fruit and grilled chicken (or veggie) wraps. Make sure to drink lots of water, too. Not only to ensure you stay hydrated in the heat but it will minimize any puffiness in the skin. Being bloat-free in your bikini will automatically make you feel a few pounds lighter.

Abs Exercise Tip: Try this variation on the traditional plank. While in plank position (forearms and toes), alternate bringing right knee to right elbow and left knee to left elbow. Start with 15 to 30 seconds and work your way up to one to two minutes on your hands and toes. Abs might be made in the kitchen, but keeping them strong is crucial to looking good in your bikini.