Tag Archives: exercise routine

Another Circuit Routine

We spent much of tonight discussing diet plans for this holiday season, so we only had time to do 1 minute on each station, but it was still a great workout. We used the Nike Boom App on Interval Training mode to time 1 minute reps with 15 second breaks between (time to move between stations), and got to listen to peppy music while we worked out. (FYI, it’s a free app for Droid and iPhone!)

Warm-up: walk in place while doing arm circles, followed by shaking your arms out. Then do 30 toe touches and 30 side bends (touch the sides of your knees with your fingertips if you can).

1. Charlie’s Angels Lunges: while performing alternating forward lunges, put your hands together like you’re making a gun with your fingers and point to your left when your left foot is forward, right when your right foot is forward.

2. Glute Leg Lift: down on all fours, with a flat back, lift one leg straight back and pulse upward. Switch legs half-way through.

3. Jump Rope

4. Hydrants: down on all fours again, with a flat back, lift bent leg upward on your side. Switch legs half-way through.

5. Alternating Front Lifts and Lateral Raises with 5 lb. weights.

6. Wall Squats: that’s right, just sit there…how low can you go?!

7. Kneeling Twist & Bend: Kneel on right knee, placing left leg straight out to the side; sitting up straight, twist at your waist toward the straight leg, then bend toward the straight leg, and return to center position. Switch legs half-way through.

8. Bicep Curls to Overhead Press with 5 lb. weights.

9. Pushup to Upward Dog to Downward Dog Cycle.

10. Tricep Overhead Extensions with 8 or 10 lb. weight.

Cool-down: Walk in place while performing wrist circles. Follow with tricep stretch (pat on back), cross over arm stretches, cat/cow stretch, and deep breathing, incorporating arms and legs.

The Commercial Break Routine: AKA, The Couch Potato Routine

If you’re just starting out on your personal journey to a healthy you, start small. First, consult your doctor to see if there’s anything you shouldn’t be doing. Then begin by creating active, healthful choices, like working out during commercial breaks.

Here are some exercises that are easy to do while waiting for your favorite show to return. Pick one or two to do doing each commercial break. If you watch an hour of TV tonight (which is lower than the national average), you’ll get in close to 20 minutes of exercise.

Tips: Keep exercise equipment (even if it’s just an empty milk carton you’ve filled with sand or 2 cans of vegetables) near your TV. Before you hit the power on button, roll out your workout mat. Staring at the equipment while you watch TV will motivate you to want to use it. After all, you spent good money on it. It would be a waste (and maybe a bigger waist) not too (pun intended).

1. Knee Lift: Stand up with your elbows locked into your sides and your arms straight out in front of you, palms down. Now, start walking. Try to touch your knee to the palm of your hand. Do this for one commercial or one commercial break.

2. Bicep Curl: If you have weights, great! If not, get up and walk to the kitchen, but instead of looking in the fridge to see what’s there, grab 2 cans out of your pantry and use them for weights. Do 12-15 reps for each arm. Switch back and forth between arms or do both at the same time. Start in the same position as you started the Knee Lift, but turn your palms up to hold the weights. Keeping your elbows firm and shoulders relaxed, concentrate on flexing the bicep muscle as you curl the weight in towards your body and then relax.

3. Tricep Kickback: Again, start with elbows at your sides, arms out in front of you, holding the weights like you’re holding a torch. Now, keeping your shoulders down and relaxed, move your elbows up and back, like chicken wings. Keeping the elbow in this position throughout the exercise, move your forearm with the weight down and back, straightening your arm, then bring your forearm forward and up, back into the chicken wing position. Do this for 12-15 reps, during one commercial, or the entire commercial break.

4. Bent Over Row: Stand up straight and tall. Now pretend your waist is a door hinge. Bend at your waist, keeping your legs straight and your back straight. Put your arms (with weights) out in front of you, this time palms down to hold the weights, like your holding onto oars. Row the weights back until they’re parallel with your sides, then bring them forward to the front again, and continue rowing. Remember to keep your back flat and your shoulders relaxed.

5. Zipper: Take one weight with both hands and hold it in front of you with your elbows facing out (like you’re a bride holding her bouquet). Keeping your shoulders relaxed, lift the weight (and both arms) up in front of your face (like you’re zipping up a jacket), then down to your belly button. You should feel this in your deltoids (the triangle shape muscle that runs between your neck, shoulder and shoulder blade on your back. You may also feel it in your pectorals (pecs).

6. Torso Twist & Punch: Start standing up, in boxer stance. Keep your legs and hips still. Now rotate at your waist towards your right, come back to center, then rotate at your waist towards your left. Once you’re comfortable twisting from side to side, imagine your opponent standing right in front of you. Picture his face and punch each time you come to center (be careful not to overextend your elbow). I picture “Mr. Fat” and as I punch, I say, “Take that, Mr. Fat! You will NOT win!”

7. Overhead Tricep Extension: You can stay seated for this one. Take one weight in each hand or hold one with both hands. Lift your hands straight into the air, arms next to your ears, palms facing each other. Now, keeping your arms up, and elbows stationary, bend at the elbow so your forearms come behind you. Remember to keep your shoulders relaxed and your belly in firm.

8. Lateral Raises: Lateral means to the sides. Put your arms straight out to the sides, like an airplane. Now bring them straight down at your sides. Repeat. Hold weights while doing this for more a deeper work out. For more of a challenge, combine this with number 13.

9. Pushups or Planks: Your body should be forming a right triangle with the 90° angle being made by your arms and the floor. Whether you’re on your toes or your knees, remember to keep your abs in strong and your rear down! We want a flat back on this one. Either hold for 30 seconds to 1 minute (or test yourself and hold for one commercial or an entire commercial break) or do 12-15 pushups.

10. Tricep Dips: You’re sitting on your couch, feet planted on the floor. Put your hands on either side of you on the couch, fingers facing forward. In this position, move your feet one step forward, so your legs are a little straighter out, but still planted on the floor. Now, slide your rear forward until it’s off the couch and only your arms and legs are supporting you. Dip down (elbows bend and rear goes towards the floor), then straighten your arms to come back up. Repeat 12-15 times.

11. Toe Touches: Okay, come on. You know how to do this. Stand up straight, bend at the waist and touch your toes. If you can only touch your calves to begin with, fine. Just bend down and back up 12-15 times (or an entire commercial break).

12. Bicycle: Lie down on your back, feet in the air out in front of you, and pretend to peddle a bicycle. It’s that simple. If you want a challenge, do the Bicycle Crunch: hands behind your head, head and shoulders lifted off the ground, with each bicycle rotation, crunch up and touch right elbow to left knee, then left elbow to right knee.

13. Couch Squat: Feet spread slightly more than shoulderwidth apart, begin to sit down on the couch, and then barely touch the cushion before coming back up. “I think I’ll sit down; nope, I won’t. I think I’ll sit down: nope, I won’t.” Etc., etc. You may find it easier if you hold your hands in fists out in front of your navel.

14. Wall Pushups: Stand facing the wall, arms straight out in front of you, hands flat against the wall. Keeping your feet planted and your body straight, lean into towards the wall, then push yourself back away. The further your feet are from the wall (within reason), the hard the exercise will be. Stand at least arms length away.

And don’t forget to stretch. Odds are, if you watch an hour or so of TV and actually do some exercises during the breaks, you’ll get in your 30 minutes per day. And, since you’re getting your heart rate up with short breaks in between, it keeps your metabolism going. Note: this does NOT give you an excuse to eat a giant bowl of ice cream when it’s not commercial time. Lifting a spoon to your mouth doesn’t count as an arm workout. If you need a snack while you watch, try water, a glass of skim milk, a small handful of dried fruit or trail mix (and it doesn’t count as trail mix if you only pick out the chocolate pieces). Remember, if you’re going to snack, keep the container in the kitchen. Only bring a small portion with you to the TV room, and do NOT, I repeat DO NOT, go back for seconds!

Enjoy the journey!

Tuesday’s Workout

I started with 10 minutes of yoga to warm up:

  • Warrior One
  • Warrior Two
  • Triangle
  • Reverse Warrior
  • Plank, Pushup, Side Plank, Plank, Pushup, Side Plank, etc.

Then I did some weights (10 lbs. per side, 30 reps each):

  • Alternating Dumbbell Bicep Curls
  • Dumbbell Triceps Extensions
  • Lateral Flys
  • Front Punch Boxing with Weights
  • Chair Pose with Pulsing Weights (straight arms toward the back of the room)

Then I do a short floor routine:

  • Crunches (30 reps), Side Crunches (30 reps each side), Crunches (50 reps)
  • Lying Abduction, Lying Adduction (30 reps each per side)

Then I got on the elliptical for 10 minutes: 2 miles at a 20 intensity.

I finished with some Straight Leg Triceps Dips (15), Decline Pushups (5, these are tough!), and Stretching. Ahh! That felt good!

Get Fit Routine by Anna Netz

This looks great! Check out the rest of the website for all kinds of health & wellness tips.

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.