The summer is quickly approaching and you are finally ready to get that “summer body.” Or, maybe you just want to start living a healthier lifestyle. Either way, I have the answers to both. About 75 percent of your weight loss goals depend on what you eat, so it’s important to make it count. While losing weight won’t happen overnight, there are some techniques you can use to push it along faster — some of which you might not have thought of. Here are four.

Don't Forget About High-Quality H2O

It is crucial that we provide our bodies with enough water to keep us alert, hydrated, and energized. With water comprising 50 to 65 percent of the average adult’s body, there’s even more initiative to consume more water. It is recommended we drink about 8 cups of water a day. This may seem like a lot of water, but your body needs it. Moreover, all those midday cravings may actually be your body telling you it’s thirsty — it’s much better to fill up with water between meals than unhealthy snacks.

Cutting out sodas and other sugar-filled liquids is also easier than you think, and it’ll help you avoid the weight gain that’s so often associated with drinking sugary beverages. If you find it hard, you can start by drinking hot green tea with raw honey or making flavored water by infusing it fruits and herbs at home. These substitutes are just a couple ways to help get over those ‘sweet’ drink cravings, but if they sound boring, researching other alternatives is never a bad idea.

Say Yes to a Quick Morning Workout

The last thing you probably want to do as soon as you wake up is workout, right? Well, it’s time to get to it! One of the best lifestyle hacks to improve your health is finding creative ways to get more exercise into your daily activities. So, why not use a quick workout as your daily pick-me-up? You can try something as simple as 10 sit-ups and 10 push-ups to charge your batteries and get yourself ready for the day ahead of you. Or you can do a slightly more intense workout. Try completing two reps of the following:

  • 20 jumping jacks

  • 10 crunches

  • 5 push-ups

  • 10 calf raises

  • 10 squats

  • 20 high-knees

  • 10 reverse crunches

  • 30-second plank

  • 15-second side plank

As you get better at this, you can move on to even more intense exercise routines. Also, keep a pair of dumbbells under your bed for when you get there.

Cut Processed Food out of Your Diet Now!

Fast food, junk food, and processed foods are the worst things for us to consume, period. Loaded with high-fructose syrup and refined sugar, these foods can be seriously harmful to your health. With no essential nutrients to offer and filled with “empty” calories, these types of foods can lead to insulin resistance, high triglycerides, high cholesterol, and high levels of fat accumulation. Simply changing your eating habits can positively improve your gut health and the rest of your body as well.

Utilizing Yoga for Deeper Sleep

Your body goes through a lot on a daily basis. If you’re constantly thinking about what’s stressing you, use yoga to soothe your mind and body for a better night’s sleep. Not only is it relaxing, but better sleep will also quicken recovery from your workouts. There are multiple positions and poses you can choose to fit your needs. Here are a few examples:

  • The Uttanasana (Standard Forward Fold) pose helps with your neck and back while increasing the blood flow back to your head and releases tension in your hips and legs.

  • The Viparita Karani (Up the Wall) pose is great for people who are constantly on their feet. This helps blood flow travel back to the heart and helps relax your glutes, hamstrings, and body after a long day.

  • The Savasana (Corpse Pose) position is the best way to end any day. Since it calms and eases your mind and body, falling asleep and gaining a better quality of sleep will never be an issue.

The first step in improving your health is preparing yourself for the lifestyle changes you want to accomplish. Remember to not lose your motivation, don’t get overwhelmed, and perhaps encourage loved ones and friends to join in on your lifestyle changes as well. No one is perfect, so feel free to start off slow and use these helpful tips. Changing certain lifestyle decisions is easier than you think, so begin your new and improved life today!

Gabriella Diesendorf is a freelance writer from Australia and a devoted mother. She loves badgering about beauty, green lifestyle choices, and parenting techniques. Follow her on Twitter.