Get Fit Routine by Anna Netz

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Get Fit (from healthandwellnessclub.com)
Revitalize your routine with this whole-body blast.
by Anna Netz with Kim Husband

Start off the new year by energizing a new you!

With two toddlers and one on the way, I’m pressed for time. That’s why I devised this ultimate workout. It’s a whole-body routine that targets both the cardiovascular system and the major muscles of the upper and lower body — all in less time than it takes to watch a “Friends” rerun.

You can do this workout before or after your regular cardio session, or on days you’re not doing cardio. You can also do the upper body components Anna Netz, the National Health and Wellness Club’s personal trainer and online fitness consultant, is an NSCA-certified personal trainer and aerobics instructor. Kim Husband is a freelance editor and writer.one day and lower body the next. Once you know the moves, they’ll take just 20 to 30 minutes.

When you’ve completed the ultimate workout, stretch for 3 to 5 minutes to cool down. And you’re done!

What you need
Long resistance band with handles (beginners can omit it)
Ankle resistance band
Pair of 5- or 8-l free weights (dumbbells). Beginners can start with little or no weight and work their way up.
Sturdy athletic shoes
Exercise mat

Ultimate benefits
• Burn more calories throughout the day
• Build strength to prevent injury
• Increase bone density
• Release natural endorphins to combat stress
• Look and feel better


Ultimate legs

Do two sets of 12 repetitions on each side.

Squats (thighs and glutes)
1. Stand in starting position — feet shoulder width apart, back straight — with hands at shoulder height holding resistance band handles.
2. Squat on a slow count of three as if lowering yourself into a chair. Keep your knees aligned over your ankles.
3. Rise to starting position on a three-count.

To burn more calories:
Add plyometrics — explosive movements that develop power. After you’ve done your resistance band squats, drop the band.
1. Squat.
2. Jump straight up as high as you can and repeat for 30 to 60 seconds.
Technique
Do the lower body set first. Starting with bigger movements warms up large muscles to prevent injury.

March and hip extension (quads and glutes)
Keep movements medium-sized, and keep hips stable so you’re working just the targeted leg muscles.
1. Stand in starting position. (Beginners can touch a wall for balance. To improve balance, stand on your own.)
2. With ankle band on, raise knee toward the ceiling, then lower.
3. Still standing, extend straight leg behind you, then lower.

Lift and sweep (inner and outer thighs)
1. Use same starting position as March and Hip Extension.
2. (inner thigh): From starting position, with ankle band, turn toes out at 45 degree angle, then sweep leg out in front, leading with the ankle, then lower.
3. (outer thigh): From starting position, with ankle band, flex foot and lift ankle out to the side, then lower.

Note:
Don’t let legs rest on ground between repetitions.

To burn more calories:
Add plyometrics. Spring from side to side as if skating in place. When you hop to your left, touch your right foot to the ground behind you and vice versa. “Skate” fast for 30 to 60 seconds.
Ultimate upper body
Do two sets of 12 reps of each exercise. Work both arms at the same time.

Push-ups (upper body)
1. Start with knees and hands on the floor shoulder width apart. Hold weights to support wrists.
2. Lower body so elbows bend to 90 degrees. Align hips with shoulders; don’t let rear poke upward.
3. Straighten arms to come back to start position, but don’t lock elbows.

Chest press (chest)
1. Lie on your back, knees bent, feet flat on the floor. Start with weights raised toward the ceiling, inline with chest, touching each other. Palms face feet.
2. Lower elbows until they’re bent to 90 degrees (fists remain raised — don’t relax all the way down), then straighten.

Row (back)
1. Sit on floor with legs straight out in front, spread legs as far as possible, back straight. Loop band around bottoms of shoes. Hold band in hands. Start with elbows next to hips.
2. Squeeze elbows toward one another behind you, then come back to start position.

Note: Posture — an erect spine and tight abs — is especially important here.
 
Triceps press (back of upper arm)
1. From same position, separate arms so wrists are above shoulders. Palms face each other.
2. Hold ends of weights. Lower weights toward floor until elbows are bent at 90 degrees, then straighten.

Biceps curls (front of upper arms)
1. Stand on band in starting position, palms facing forward.
2. With elbows tight to sides, bring palms toward shoulders, then back down.

Note: Don’t bend wrists.

Front lift (shoulders)
1. Stand in starting position, hands holding weights, palms on thighs.
2. Raise arms straight out in front to shoulder height, then lower.


Breathing
Don’t hold your breath. Exhale as you exert force — for example, while lifting a weight — and inhale as you return to the starting position.

Posture
Good posture is key to doing the exercises correctly and decreasing your chance of injury. So keep your:
• abs tight
• chest lifted
• shoulders pressed down

Ultimate abs
Do two sets of 12 reps of all the core exercises two to three times a week.

Crunches (all abs)
1. Lie flat on floor with legs extended, feet flexed. Press belly button downward so lower back is flat. Place hands beside head.
2. Lift chest off the floor, then sink again, but not all the way.

Note: Don’t use hands to bring head up. Lift independently.

Diagonal crunches (obliques)
1. Lie flat as before, same as crunches. Raise left knee and right shoulder toward each other. Repeat on both sides.

Tips:
Press belly button down and don’t relax down completely between crunches. Exhale as you rise, inhale as you sink.

Plank (all core muscles)
1. Lie on belly with knees touching floor, forearms flat on floor, elbows at 90 degrees, so torso rises. Make a straight line from shoulders to hips. Beginners stay in this position.
2. Hold, squeezing abs tight, shoulders relaxed, for 30 to 60 seconds (just once).
3. For a challenge, bring knees off the floor and hold.

Bird dog (lower back)
You must do this if you do any abdominal exercises in order to keep muscles balanced.

1. From all fours, extend right arm straight in front and left leg straight behind. Hold for 10 seconds, then switch sides. Do a total of 10 reps (five each side).

Anna Netz, the National Health and Wellness Club’s personal trainer and online fitness consultant, is an NSCA-certified personal trainer and aerobics instructor. Kim Husband is a freelance editor and writer.

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