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....................................................3 1. Low-Impact Cardio Blast....................................................................................................................5 B. Endurance Workout...............................................................................................................................7 C. Cardio Blast ...........................................................................................................................................8 D. Top 10 Cardio Exercises......................................................................................................................10 II. STRETCHING.........................................................................................................................................13 A. Lower body stretch..............................................................................................................................13 B. Seated Stretch for the Back, Neck & Shoulders..................................................................................15 C. Total Body Stretch...............................................................................................................................16 D. Stretch with Resistance Bands ............................................................................................................17 If you’re bored:.....................................................................................................................................19 III. RUNNING PROGRAM........................................................................................................................20 IV. STRENGHT TRAINING FOR BEGINNERS.......................................................................................21 A. The First Six Weeks - Program............................................................................................................21 B. Total Body Strength for Beginners......................................................................................................22 How to Begin .......................................................................................................................................24 C. Weight Training...................................................................................................................................25 1. Full Body Workout...........................................................................................................................28 2. Total Core Workout .........................................................................................................................28 3. Office Exercise.................................................................................................................................30 4. 30 Minute Compound Workout .......................................................................................................31 5. Full Body Workout (at Home)........................................................................................................35 6. Total Body Workout with Gliding Discs (bučice)............................................................................37 7. Exercise - No Weight Workout........................................................................................................39 8. No Equipment Workout ...................................................................................................................41 9. Circuit Training ................................................................................................................................43 A. ABS......................................................................................................................................................45 1. Abs and Back....................................................................................................................................45 2. Beginner Abs & Back.......................................................................................................................46 3. Exercises for Your Abs.....................................................................................................................48 4. Ab and Core Progression..................................................................................................................49 5. Yoga & Pilates for Abs.....................................................................................................................51 6. Dynamic Abs ...................................................................................................................................52 7. How To Do a Perfect Abdominal Crunch........................................................................................54 8. Top 5 Ab Exercises...........................................................................................................................54 B. BUTT, HIPPS AND TIGHS................................................................................................................56 1. Butts & Guts.....................................................................................................................................56 2. Squat Exercises.................................................................................................................................58 3. Exercise Hips, Butt and Thighs........................................................................................................59 4. Top 10 Butt Exercises.......................................................................................................................61 5. Your Butt Workout ..........................................................................................................................65 C. LEGS....................................................................................................................................................66 1. Basic Lower Body Exercises............................................................................................................66 D. UPPER BODY.....................................................................................................................................68 1. Back Exercises - Lats and Mid-Back................................................................................................68 2. Exercises for Your Biceps................................................................................................................69 3. Exercises for Your Chest..................................................................................................................70 4. Exercises for Your Triceps...............................................................................................................71 5. Shoulder Exercises............................................................................................................................72 1
6. Shoulders, Arms and Chest...............................................................................................................73 7. Uppper Body Workout......................................................................................................................75 8. Upper Body Mixed Resistance Workout..........................................................................................78 9. Upper Body Progression...................................................................................................................79
I. CARDIO VJEŽBE
- walking, running, bycicle
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Start with 2 or 3 days of your chosen activity with a rest day between workouts. Begin with a 5-10 minute warm up of light cardio and stretch the muscles you'll use during your workout Increase your pace and intensity to slightly harder than comfortable and exercise as long as you can. Begin where you ARE, not where you want to be. You may only be able to exercise for a few minutes at a time, but that will change quickly if you're consistent. End each workout with a 5-minute cool down of light cardio and stretch the muscles you've worked to help keep your muscles flexible and reduce your chances of injury. Each week, increase your workout time by a few minutes until you can work continuously for 30 minutes a session. Don't worry about distance or pace. For the first few weeks, focus on endurance and conditioning. You have plenty of time to work on your speed and distance! After 6 or more weeks, change your routine by adding another day of exercise, increasing your pace/intensity, adding a new activity and/or increasing the amount of time you exercise Make sure you have quality shoes for your chosen activity. Start slowly. Doing too much too soon can lead to injuries and misery. Try new activities. Doing the same thing can lead to plateaus, boredom and injuries.
Variety will keep your body and your mind challenged, so after the initial conditioning period (about 6 weeks of consistent workouts), vary your workout intensity and time. Each week, do a long, slow workout--45-60 minutes at the lower end of your THR and one short one--20-30 minutes at the higher end of your THR. Your other workouts can be between 30-45 minutes, in the middle of your THR. (Target Rate Heart)
A. Low Impact Exercise
- Walking Walking is by far the most popular low impact exercise, but in order to get your heart rate up there are some things you may need to do.
Walk faster. One mistake we often make is walking too slowly to get the heart rate up. Wendy, About's Walking Guide, offers a great tutorial for How to Walk Faster. Picking up the pace can help you up the intensity of your workouts. 3
Try interval training. By adding short bursts of speed or an occasional steep hill to your walking workouts, you can increase the intensity of your workouts as well as your calorie-burn. Try one of these Hill Workouts on the Treadmill or one of the Beginner Interval Workouts to get started. Use your arms. Make sure you're not holding onto the treadmill and, when you're outside, swing your arms to keep the intensity up. Holding weights as you walk is a no-no (it can cause injury), but consider using walking poles as an alternative. Mix things up. If walking is your sole source of cardio, cross-train with other activities to keep your body challenged. Walking is something we do every day and, therefore, we're very good at it. Learning something you're not as adept at can be a great boost to your endurance and fat loss.
- Walking the Stairs Walking up stairs, whether they're real stairs or the revolving staircase at the gym, can be an incredibly intense workout and a great way to get your heart rate up. If you're a beginner, try adding a few minutes of stairclimbing to your usual workout or hop on the stepmill at the gym for a quick five minutes towards the end of your workout. You'll find you don't have to go very fast to get your heart rate up. - Hiking Hiking can be another tough low impact activity, especially if you're hiking up an incline. The changing terrain requires a lot of work from the lower body and walking up a mountain involves the large muscles of the glutes, hips and thighs - exactly what you want for an intense cardio workout. Add a backpack and you're burning even more calories. - Step Aerobics Step aerobics can be a great alternative if you like choreographed exercise but can't handle the pounding of hi/lo aerobics. Because you're stepping onto an elevated platform, you can typically get your heart rate up without doing any jumping. Using the arms can add more intensity the the workout as well. Cathe Friedrich is just one video instructor who offers low impact workouts for the more advanced exerciser such as Low Impact Circuit, Low Impact Step and Low Max Step. You can also try group fitness classes or other more advanced videos that may include high impact and modify the workout to keep it low. - Other Alternatives You can also choose other activities that have no impact, but still offer high intensity workouts like cycling, swimming, cross-country skiing, the Versaclimber or rowing. Any of these activities can be intense if you work hard, but you may also want to cross-train with impact activities to keep your body challenged in different ways.
Adding Intensity to Your orkouts 4
The key to making low impact exercise work is to work a little harder by involving your entire body in what you're doing. Try some of these ideas for making your workouts more intense:
Add upper body movements. Upper body moves can contribute to your overall intensity so think of swinging your arms when you walk, raising the arms overhead during step or other types of aerobics or choosing machines at the gym with upper body options like a cross-country ski machine or elliptical trainer. Go Faster. Picking up the pace, whether you're walking, cycling or ellipticalling (did I make that up?), is another way to make your workouts a little tougher. Use big movements. Another way to add intensity is to use big, exaggerated movements. For example, if you were marching in place, you could make the move harder by bringing the knees up high and circling the arms overhead. Involve the lower body. Most cardio activities do involve the lower body, but you can add intensity without impact by doing things like squats or lunges to really get the legs involved. Add walking lunges or side steps with squats to your usual walking workout to increase intensity.
1. Low-Impact Cardio Blast This low-impact, high-intensity workout is for the intermediate/advanced exerciser looking for a workout that's tough on the heart, but easy on the joints. This is a circuit-style workout, taking you through a series of cardio moves, each performed for about one minute with little or no rest between exercises. Any time you're doing low-impact exercise, adding big arm movements and going through the exercises with as much speed as you can (while keeping good form) will help you keep your heart rate up. The exercises are just suggestions...always modify according to your fitness level and avoid any exercise that hurts or doesn't feel right. See detailed instructions below.
Exercise Warm up Warm up for 2 or more minutes with light cardio, such as step touches (as shown). Really use your arms to get your heart rate going. Side Lunge with Windmill Arms Stand with legs wide, arms straight out to the sides and parallel to the floor. Bend the right knee into a side lunge and bring the left arm down towards the foot. Repeat on the other side, lunging from side to side and bringing opposite arm towards foot. The faster you go and the lower you lunge, the harder it is. Repeat for 1 minute. Picture
Knee Lifts with Med Ball Hold a light medicine ball or weight straight up overhead. Lift the right knee up to waist level while bringing the arms down, touching the weight to the knee. Return to start and repeat on the left side. Alternate knees and repeat for 1 minute. Front Kick with Squat Stand with feet together. Bring the right knee up and extend the leg in a front kick (don't lock the knee!). Lower down into a low squat (knees behind toes) and then kick with the left leg. Repeat (right kick, squat, left kick) for 1 minute. Diagonal Knee Smash Shift your weight to the right foot and take the left leg straight out to the side, toe lightly resting on the floor and arms extended up and to the right of the body. Bring the left knee up and across the body while bringing the arms down and towards the left with a torso twist. Take the left foot down, tapping the floor and continue with the knee lift and arm smash for one minute, going as fast as you can. Repeat on the other side for one minute. Side Lunge with Punch Begin in standing position and turn to the right, stepping the left foot straight back and bending the right knee into a lunge while punching with the left arm. Step the left foot back to start and repeat on the other side, lunging to the left and punching with the right hand. Move as quickly as you can while keeping good form and repeat, alternating sides for one minute. Side Knee Lift and Kick Shift the weight to the right leg and take the left arm straight up. Bring the left knee up to hip level while taking the left elbow down towards the knee, squeezing the waist. Lower the leg, shift your weight to the left leg and kick to the side with the right leg. Repeat the knee lift, side kick for one minute then switch to the other side and repeat the same thing for one minute. Front Kick and Low Lunge Bring the right knee up and extend the leg in a snapping front kick without locking or hyperextending the knee. Bring the leg back and, keeping your balance on the left leg, immediately take the right leg back behind you in a lunge while touching the floor with your fingertips. Repeat the kick and low lunge sequence for one minute and repeat the
sequence on the other side for one minute. March in Place Use this as a cool down or a transition for repeating the entire circuit. Stop here for a 12-minute workout or repeat the circuit one or more times for a longer workout.
Tips and Instructions • • • • • • Beginners: Take care with this workout and only do what you can with good form. You can substitute other moves (marching in place, walking a flight of stairs, etc.), modify the suggested time for each move or try one of these Beginner Cardio Workouts. Intermediate/Advanced: Perform each exercise one after the other for one or more minutes, resting when you need to. Complete all the exercises for a 12-minute workout or go through the circuit two or more times for a longer workout. Modify according to your fitness level...the time given for each move is just a suggestion--go longer or shorter if you need to. Sip water throughout the workout. When you get tired, walk in place (don't stop moving) Monitor your intensity and keep your RPE between 5 and 8 or 9. Always see your doctor if you have any injuries, illnesses or health conditions.
B. Endurance Workout
Focus on keeping a steady pace that allows you to breathe easily and carry on a conversation. • • • • • Beginners: Modify according to your fitness level. Add a few minutes to your workouts each week to progress. The RPE's (Rate of Perceived Exertion) are to help you keep track of your intensity on a scale of 1 - 10. In this workout, stay slightly above your comfort level and choose a pace you can maintain for the length of the workout. If you can't talk or feel dizzy, stop! You can also use a Target Heart Rate Calculator to monitor your exercise intensity. Always check with your doctor before starting an exercise program
Endurance Workout 5 minutes RPE 3-4 - Warm Up 5 minutes: RPE 5 - Increase speed from warm up slightly 5 minutes: RPE 6 - Increase speed again and increase incline or resistance (if an option) 1-2% 5 minutes: RPE 5-6 - Maintain speed and decrease incline/resistance to 0 5 minutes: RPE 6 - Increase speed again and incline/resistance to 1-2% 5 minute: RPE 5-6 - Maintain speed and decrease incline/resistance to 0 5 minutes: RPE 3-4 - Decrease speed to cool down Total Workout Time 35 Minutes
*This workout can be done using any cardio machine or outside. If you walk, run or cycle outside, simply maintain a steady pace for as long as you can, increasing intensity slightly every five minutes until cool down.
C. Cardio Blast
• • • •
This cardio blast workout is about 25 minutes long and involves advanced, high impact exercises designed to get your heart rate up very high. Proceed with caution! Beginners: This is an advanced workout, though you can substitute lighter moves (marching in place, walking a flight of stairs, etc.). You can also modify the suggested time for each move or start with this workout Intermediate/Advanced: Perform each exercise 1 after the other, resting when you need to. Modify according to your fitness level...the time given for each move is just a suggestion--go longer or shorter if you need to. Sip water throughout the workout. When you get tired, walk in place (don't stop moving) Monitor your intensity! RPE should be between 6-9.
Warm up Warm up for 2 or more minutes with light cardio, such as step touches (as shown). Really use your arms to get your heart rate going. Side Lunge with Windmill Arms Stand with legs wide, arms straight out to the sides and parallel to the floor. Bend the right knee into a side lunge and bring the left arm down towards the foot. Repeat on the other side, lunging from side to side and bringing opposite arm towards foot. The faster you go and the lower you lunge, the harder it is. Repeat for 1 minute. Jogs Jog in place while pushing your arms overhead. Try to kick high, as if you're kicking your own butt and really use the arms to raise the heart rate. You can also jog around the house or around the block. Repeat for 1 minute. High Jogs As you jog, bring your knees up high, to waist level if you can. Try not to lean back too far. Repeat for 1 minute. Speed Skaters Jump from side to side, landing on one leg and swinging the arms with each jump. This is a lateral move, so keep your body low to the ground, knees bent and don't jump up too high. Repeat for 1 minute. Heel Digs Start with feet together. Jump up and land on right leg with the left heel straight out in front of you on the floor. Jump up and switch legs, bringing the right heel in front of you. Keep the body low to the ground--the higher you jump, the harder it is. Repeat for 1 minute.
Jumping Jacks Do jumping jacks for 1 minute.
PlyoJacks Begin with feet together and jump up, taking feet out to the side, landing in a low squat. Jump up and bring feet back together (a very slow jumping jack). Swing your arms overhead to add intensity. Do this move for 30 seconds, rest for a few seconds, and repeat for another 30 seconds. This is a tough one! Ice Breakers Begin with feet wide. Jump up and land in a wide squat while swinging your right arm around, over your head and down in a chopping motion. Repeat the jump, chopping with your left arm. Repeat for 1 minute. Jogs Jog or march in place while pushing your arms overhead. Try to kick high, as if you're kicking your own butt and really use the arms to raise the heart rate. You can also jog around the house or around the block. Repeat for 1 minute. Squat-Thrust Stand with feet together. Squat down and place your hands on the floor next to your feet. In an explosive movement, jump feet backwards into a push-up position, jump feet back between hands and stand up. Perform 6 reps, march in place for 8 counts for brief recovery, repeat 6 more times. This is a tough one! Cross-Country Ski Begin with feet together. Jump up bringing the right foot forward, left foot back. Quickly switch feet while alternating the arms with the legs (left arm comes up when right foot goes back). Repeat for 1 minute. March in Place Aren't you tired? Take a minute, catch your breath Jump Kicks Stand with feet together. Raise the right knee to waist level and then jump, switching legs and kicking out with the left leg (in a knee-up-kick pattern). Repeat for 30 seconds and then switch, bringing the left knee up and kicking out with the right leg, repeating on this side for 30 seconds. Plyo-Lunge Begin in a lunge position, right foot forward, left foot back, both knees at 90 degree angles. Jump up and switch feet in the air, landing in a lunge with left foot forward, right foot back. Repeat for 30 seconds, rest and do it for 30 seconds more. This is a tough one!
Side Kicks Stand with feet together. Transfer your weight to the right leg, making sure your foot is out at an angle to protect your knee. Bring the left knee up and in towards the body as you look to the left, leaning the torso to the right. Extend the left leg out in a kick without locking the knee. Lower back down and repeat on the other side, alternating sides for 1 minute. If you've never tried kickboxing moves before, skip this one. Front Kick with Squat Stand with feet together. Bring the right knee up and extend the leg in a front kick (don't lock the knee!). Lower down into a low squat (knees behind toes) and then kick with the left leg. Repeat (right kick, squat, left kick) for 1 minute. Lunge with Chop Step forward with right foot into a low lunge (front knee behind toe, both knees to 90 degree angles) while simultaneously bringing left arm down towards the floor in a chopping motion. Step back and repeat for 30 seconds. Switch to the other side and repeat for another 30 seconds. This is a tough one! March or Jog in Place, 1 minute Power Jumps This is your last exercise! Begin with feet together. Bend the knees and jump as high as you can while circling your arms overhead. Land with soft knees in a squat and repeat for 1 minute. Cool down with some light walking and stretching
D. Top 10 Cardio Exercises You already know that one of the most important things you can do for your weight loss goals is regular cardio exercise. There are so many choices out there...which exercises are the most effective? Below are the best cardio activities for blasting calories and getting in great shape. 1) Running Running is one of best activities you can do. It doesn't require special equipment (except some quality shoes) and you can do it anywhere. Best of all, you burn serious calories, especially if you add hills and sprints. A 145-lb person can burn 300 (at 5.2 mph) in 30 minutes. The downside is, it takes lots of practice and you should watch your knees and ankles for any discomfort or pain. More: Running at About.com 2) Cross-Country Skiing Whether you're on a gym machine or swooshing over miles of snow, cross-country skiing is an incredible cardio exercise. What makes it so great is that it involves your upper and lower body, which means it doesn't take much to get your heart rate 10
soaring. A 145-lb person burns about 330 calories during 30 minutes of skiing. The downside is: it's HARD. Take your time and ease into it. 3) Bicycling Outdoors or indoors, cycling gives some great cardio. Using all the power in your legs, you'll increase endurance while burning lots of calories, anywhere from 250500 in 30 minutes, depending on how fast you go and how high your resistance is. More: Bicycling at About.com 4) Elliptical Trainer The elliptical trainer is a great way to build endurance while protecting your aching joints from high impact activities. Plus, if you use one with arms, it's just like using a cross-country ski machine. The elliptical trainer is also a good choice for runners looking for a break from pounding the pavement. A 145-lb person burns about 300 calories in 30 minutes. More: Before You Buy an Elliptical Trainer 5) Swimming Swimming, like cross-country skiing, is a full body exercise. The more body parts you involve in your workout, the more calories you'll burn. Spend 30 minutes doing the breastroke and you'll burn almost 400 calories. Best of all, your joints are fully supported so you don't have to worry about high-impact injuries. It's also great cross-training for other cardio activities. More: Swimming at About.com 6) Step Aerobics Step aerobics has yet to lose its luster for many gym-goers and it's a good thing. Step is one tough workout that targets your legs, butt and hips while burning almost 400 calories in 30 minutes (during high intensity sessions). Though it might look complicated, step is easy to learn if you start with a beginner class or video. More: Step Videos 7) Rowing This is an often overlooked machine in the gym because most people are confused about how it works. Vigorous rowing can really get your heart rate up while working your arms like crazy. Plus, it's probably not something you do very often which means you'll burn even more calories. In 30 minutes, a 145-lb person can burn about 300 calories. That's if you do it with a little oomph. More: Rowingmachines.com 8) Rock Climbing Rock climbing burns a whopping 380 calories in 30 minutes, but this isn't an activity for the faint of heart. Though you use strength and power with your arms and legs, rock climbing has a high learning curve and requires lots of special equipment and techniques so you don't hurt yourself. Mental strength is a plus! More: Climbing at About.com 9) Walking If you put a little oomph into it, walking is a great exercise, burning about 180 calories in 30 minutes. Adding hills, sprints or even a few minutes of jogging can increase the amount of calories you burn. Make sure you walk briskly--pretend you're trying to catch a bus--and keep you head up, back straight and swing your arms. More: Walking at About.com 10) Handball Okay, I'm not just putting this in here because my husband plays handball (and very well, I might add). Similar to racquetball (but without the racquet), the side-to-side sprints will get your heart rate up as well as strengthen your legs. The learning 11
curve is high, so plan on practicing a lot before you can even hit that little ball. A 145-lb person burns over 400 calories in 30 minutes.
The Benefits Stretching is an important part of a cool down, not only physically but mentally; ending your workout with something that makes you feel good can help you associate those good feelings with future workouts. Other benefits include:
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Improved performance Reduced soreness and lower back pain Increased blood flow to the body Improved coordination Keeps you active and mobile as you age It feels good!
The Basics Your stretching program doesn't have to be complicated. Following these simple rules can make your routine safe and easy:
• • • •
Make sure you stretch warm muscles. Stretching cold muscles can cause injuries, so save the stretching for after your workout. Never bounce when you stretch. This forces the muscle to go beyond what is comfortable and can cause injury Stretch all the muscles you use during your workout, lingering on any areas that are tight or tender. Hold each stretch for about 15-30 30 seconds and try to do each stretch 2 or more times
Stretching and flexibility programs have become so popular, it's easy to learn how to do it safely and there are a number of tools out there to make your routine a little more effective.
A. Lower body stretch
Instructions Hip/Glute Stretch Cross left foot over right knee. Clasp hands behind right thigh and gently pull the leg in towards you, keeping upper body relaxed. Switch Legs Hamstring Stretch Lie on floor with knees bent. Straighten one leg and slowly pull it towards you, clasping the thigh, calf or ankle. Keep knee slightly bent. Switch legs. Example
Inner Thigh Stretch Sit on floor with feet pressed together. Keeping abs in, lean forward until you feel a gentle stretch in your inner thighs. Lunge Stretch In lunge position, rest back knee on the floor, with front knee at 90 degree angle, abs in. Gently press forward until you feel a stretch in the front of the leg/hip. Switch legs. Kneeling Hamstring Stretch From above lunge position, slowly move backward until leg is slightly bent. Bend forward at the hip, keeping back flat until you feel gentle pull in the back of the leg. Switch legs. Piriformis Stretch Begin on the hands and knees and bring the left knee in, resting it on the floor between your hands (you should be on the outside of the knee). Straighten the right leg out behind you and, if you can, bend forward and rest the forearms on the floor. Knees to Chest Lying on the floor, pull your knees into your chest and clasp your hands under your knees. Gently press your hips to the floor. Knee to Chest From above position, straighten one leg and pull the other knee into your chest until you feel a stretch in your hip. Switch legs. Calf Stretch On hands and knees, straighten your legs, but keep them slightly bent. Gently press one or both feet towards the floor, keeping back flat and abs in. Kneeling Calf Stretch On hands and knees, bring the left foot in between the hands and gently press the knee forward while pressing the heel towards the floor. Spine Twist Lying on the floor, place right foot on the left knee. Using your left hand, gently pull your right knee towards the floor, twisting your spine and keeping left arm straight out, hips and shoulders on the floor. Switch sides. 14
Quad Stretch Lie down on your side using elbow for balance. Using other arm, slowly pull your foot towards your glutes, keeping both knees together and bent knee pointing down. Switch legs.
B. Seated Stretch for the Back, Neck & Shoulders
This short simple routine takes you through some basic exercises you can do right at your desk to stretch the muscles of the shoulders, neck, lower back and arms. Modify the exercises as needed if you have any specific neck, back or shoulder problems. Do these stretches several times throughout the day to relax and stretch the upper body. Click on pictures for closer view Shoulder Rolls Roll the shoulders down and back, starting with small circles and working up to larger circles. Do 10 circles backwards and then repeat forward circles. Back Stretch Contract the abs as you tip forward from the hips, bringing the hands down to the floor. Relax the head down and reach with your fingertips to stretch the back. Hold for 30 seconds. Wide Back and Shoulder Stretch From the previous exercise, take the feet wide and bring the arms inside the legs, then wrap the arms around the back of the calves, grabbing onto the ankles. Gently pull with the hands to open the shoulders and stretch the upper back. Hold for 30 seconds. Forearm and Bicep Stretch Take the right arm straight out in front of you and flex the palm up. Grab onto your fingers with the left hand and gently pull the fingers back. Hold for 20 seconds and repeat on the other hand.
Forearm Stretch From the previous exercise, turn the hand down so that the fingers reach towards the floor. Use the left hand to pull the fingers towards you, stretching the forearm. Hold for 20 seconds and repeat on the other hand. Dynamic Neck Stretch Reach the left arm down and away from the body as you drop the head to the right, stretching the neck. Place the right hand on the head and gently press your head into the hand, then release and stretch. Continue to contract the neck and press the head into the head, then stretch for 10 reps then switch sides. Twisted Shoulder Stretch Take the hands straight out in front of you and rotate the arms so that the palms face away from each other. Cross the arms so that the palms are pressed together and round the back, reaching the arms away from you as you relax the head. Hold the stretch for 30 seconds.
C. Total Body Stretch
Exercise Instructions Example
Standing Quadriceps Stretch
Chest and Shoulders
Stand and hold onto a wall for balance if needed. Grab the top of the right foot and bend your knee, bringing the foot towards the buttocks, knee pointing straight at the floor. You should feel a stretch right down the front of your leg. You can squeeze your hips forward a little to feel it more in the hip flexors. Switch sides Sit or stand and clasp your hands together behind your back, arms straight. Lift your hands towards the ceiling, going only as high as is comfortable. You should feel a stretch in your shoulders and chest.
Stand in a doorway and place your right forearm on the side of the doorway wall at chest level, elbow bent to 90 degrees. Slowly turn your body to the left. You should feel a nice stretch all through your chest. Switch sides Clasp your hands together in front of you and round your back towards the floor, pressing your arms away from your body to feel a stretch in your upper back. Take your arms out to the sides, slightly behind you, with the thumbs up (as in The Fonz). Rotate your thumbs down and back until they are pointing to the back wall. You should feel a stretch in your biceps. Take right arm straight across your chest and curl the left hand around your elbow, gently pulling on the right arm to deepen the stretch in the shoulders. Switch sides. Sitting or standing, clasp your hands straight up overhead, palms facing the ceiling. Gently lower to the right side until you feel a stretch down your left side. Switch sides and repeat. Bend the left elbow behind your head and use the right hand to gently pull the left elbow in further until you feel a stretch in your tricep. Switch sides and repeat.
D. Stretch with Resistance Bands
This basic stretching routine targets the muscles of the hips, legs, chest and back. By using a resistance band or tube, you can deepen your stretch and increase your flexibility.
Hamstring Stretch Lie on the floor and loop band around the right foot, grabbing onto the bands to create tension. Straighten the right leg as much as you comfortably can while keeping the left leg
bent on the floor. Gently pull the right leg towards you, stretching the back of the leg. Hold for 15-30 seconds and switch sides.
Inner Thigh Stretch Lie on the floor and loop band around the right foot, grabbing onto the bands in the right hand to create tension. Gently lower the right leg out to the side and towards the floor until you feel a stretch in the inner thigh. Hold for 15-30 seconds and switch sides.
Hip Stretch Lie on the floor and loop band around the right foot, grabbing onto the bands with the opposite hand. Straighten the left leg out on the floor and gently lower the right leg across the body and to the left as low as you can go feeling a stretch in the right hip and glute. Hold for 15-30 seconds and switch sides.
Upper Back Stretch Sit on the floor with legs extended and loop the band around both feet. Cross the band and grab on to each side with both hands close to the feet. Gently curl the back, stretching it towards the back of the room and using the bands to create tension and add to the stretch. Keep the abs contracted and try not to collapse over the legs. Hold for 15-30 seconds.
Chest Stretch In a cross-legged or seated position, grip the band with a wide grip up over the head. Gently pull the arms out and down as low as you can to stretch the chest. If you have shoulder problems, you may want to skip this exercise.
Side Stretch In a cross-legged or seated position, hold onto one side of the tube with the left hand and reach the arm towards the right. Grab onto the other end with the right hand and gently pull, creating tension and stretching the left side of the waist. Hold for 15-30 seconds and repeat on the other side.
Quad Stretch Sit on the floor with the right leg bent in front of you, left leg bent behind you. Lean to the right on the right forearm and grab onto the top of the foot with the left hand. Gently pull the heel towards the glutes to stretch the front of the thigh. Hold for 15-30 seconds and repeat on the other side.
Workout Tips: • • • Perform these stretches after a workout or throughout the day for improved flexibility and relaxation Stretch to your level of comfort - the stretches should feel good Hold each stretch for at least 15 seconds and repeat each stretch if you have time
If you’re bored:
How to Change Your Workouts: The key to continually challenging your muscles is to take the exercises you're currently doing and change some aspect of them every 4 to 6 weeks. Some simple changes include: • • • • • • Changing the type of resistance you're using - Machines, Dumbbells, Barbells, Cables, Tubing, or just body weight Changing your posture - Lying, seated, standing, split stance, bent over, standing on one leg or using an exercise ball Changing the movement- Using both arms/legs at once, using one arm/leg at a time or alternating sides. Changing the exercise -For example, doing pushups instead of chest press or pullovers instead of rows Changing the weight/reps - When adding weight, reduce the # of repetitions. When lightening the weight, add more reps (don't do more than 20 reps of each exercise) Adding an exercise - If you're doing a split routine, you can do anywhere from 3-5 exercises per body part.
The trick is to do something different to keep the training effect going all the time., which means avoiding weight loss and strength plateaus. Check out the sample workout below for some ideas on how to change your own routine.
III. RUNNING PROGRAM
Step One: Get geared up – the shoes, the clothes Step Two: Set Your Goals First, figure out where you'll run. If you're going outside, try to find roads made of dirt or asphalt rather than concrete, which is hard on the body. Remember to wear reflective clothing when running at night and to run towards traffic so you don't get nailed by a car. If you go to a gym, the treadmill offers a cushy surface to run on while protecting you from the elements. Second, realize you'll spend more time walking than running your first time out. Start with a brisk 10-minute walk and then alternate 30 seconds of running with one minute of walking about 3 days a week. Each week, increase the amount of time you run and decrease the amount of time you walk. Your pace should be comfortable so that you can hold a conversation. If you can't breathe, slow down! If you're following your program consistently (i.e., at least three days a week), you should be running continuously for 20 to 30 minutes by the fourth week. When you start out, you should be focused on time not intensity. Once you can run continuously for 30 minutes or so, you can start going faster.
IV. STRENGHT TRAINING FOR BEGINNERS
A. The First Six Weeks - Program
Think of the first six weeks of your program as your prep-time; a pre-fitness period in which you concentrate on learning proper technique and form, which exercises to do, which muscle groups to work and how much weight to use. Remember that your body needs an adjustment period so don't worry about the scale--you probably won't see any significant changes just yet. Below is a six-week look at how to condition your body without killing yourself. Week 1
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Start with a full body workout to condition your entire body Choose one exercise per body part (see Strength Training) Perform one set of 10-16 reps of each exercise using no weight or light weight You will probably be sore the next day, so take an OTC anti-inflammatory, soak in a hot tub and/or get a massage Rest for 1 or 2 days before working out again Do your full body routine 1-2 times
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Continue with your chosen exercises, still performing 1 set of each Add more weight (3-5 pounds) to each exercise until you can ONLY complete the desired number of reps (usually between 10-16) Do your workout 2 times with at least 1 day of rest in between
Week 3 - 6
Each workout, performone extra rep of each exercise. When you reach 16 reps, add weight (3-5 pounds for upper body, 10 pounds for lower) and drop back to 10 reps. Repeat this cycle of adding reps then adding weight each time you get to 16 repetitions In week 4, add one more workout for a total of 3 total body strength training sessions (with at least 1 day of rest between workouts In week 6, add one more set of each exercise, totaling 2 sets
You'll learn more later about what to do in the next six weeks but, for now, you have a general idea of how to begin lifting weights. For more information on choosing exercises, weight and scheduling workouts see Weight Training 101. If you're ready, get started with this Full Body Strength Training Workout for Beginners. Remember, strength training is just one part of a complete exercise program. Stay tuned for more beginner articles that will cover cardio, flexibility, yoga and more.
B. Total Body Strength for Beginners
The total body workout below is specifically for beginners who have never lifted weights or who haven't lifted weights in a long time. Take your time with the exercises and modify them to fit your needs. 1. See your doctor before you begin any exercise program if you have any injuries, illnesses or other conditions 2. Begin with a 5-10 minute warm up of light cardio (walking in place, etc.) 3. Perform each exercise for 10-16 repetitions, resting when you need to 4. Start with light weights (or no weight) until you've mastered each exercise. 5. If this is too easy or you're ready to progress, try Total Body Strength 2 or Total Body Strength 3, which contain more difficult exercises.
Do this workout 1-3 non-consecutive days a week, taking at least one day of rest between workouts. For best weight loss results, combine this workout with regular cardio and a healthy, low-calorie diet. Click on pictures for more detailed view.
Stand with feet wider than shoulders and place hands on the floor, ball or a chair (depending on flexibility). Bend knees and, keeping weight in the heels, lower butt until it's parallel to floor (or as low as you can). Keep abs in and make sure you can see your toes. Wall Push Up Stand a few feet away from a wall or a high stair railing (as shown) and place hands on wall or rail wider than shoulders. Pull the abs in and, keeping back straight, bend elbows and lower body towards the wall/rail until elbows are at 90 degree angles. Assisted Lunge
Stand in split stance, feet about 3 feet apart using a chair or rail for balance. Keeping torso straight, bend knees and lower body towards the floor without allowing front knee to bend over the toe (you should see the tip of your shoe). Push through the heel to come back up. Repeat for all reps and switch legs. Rear Delt with Good Mornings
Bend at the waist keeping the back flat (or slightly arched) until the torso is parallel to the floor, arms down. Raise arms out to the sides to shoulder level like an airplane, palms facing down and squeeze the shoulder blades together. Lower the arms, stand and repeat. Hold weights for added intensity. Ball Deadlifts
Stand in front of ball, bend knees slightly and tip from the hips to lower your torso towards ball. Grab the ball and keeping back flat and abs in, roll the ball up the legs straightening the torso and squeezing butt until standing. Do NOT round the back or change the angle of the knees. All movement begins at the hips and everything else should stay in place. Bicep Curl with Lateral Raise
Stand with feet hip-width apart holding light dumbbells in front of thighs, palms out. Bend elbows and bring weights towards the shoulders (without swinging). Lower back down, turn palms until they face each other and lift straight out to the sides stopping at shoulder level and keeping elbows slightly bent. Lower and repeat. Tricep Press
Sit on a ball or chair and hold a light-medium dumbbell in both hands with arms extended overhead, elbows next to ears, arms straight. Bend elbows and slowly lower weight behind you until elbows are at 90 degrees--keep the elbows in and right next to ears. Contract triceps and straighten elbows to beginning. Crunches
Lie on your back with your hands crossed across your chest or supporting the head, knees bent. Contract abs to lift shoulders off the floor, bringing rib cage towards the pelvis. Hold
for two counts, then lower slowly to the starting position. Repeat. Oblique Crossover Crunches
Lie on your back and cross right foot over left knee. Lift shoulder blades off the floor and curl left shoulder towards right knee, contracting the right side of waist. Lower and repeat on the same side before switching sides.
How to Begin
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Start with a program that works ALL muscle groups 1-2 non-consecutive days a week (never work the same muscle two days in a row). Warm up with 5-10 minutes of light cardio to avoid injury Choose one exercise for each muscle group (see below) and do 1 set of 10-16 repetitions of each exercise It's a good idea to start with machines (if you exercise at a gym). They're easier to use and you'll condition your muscles before moving on to free weights, which requires a bit more coordination and the use of more muscles to stabilize your body. Give yourself at least a day of rest (though you may need more after the first workout) to recover Each session, add either 1 repetition and/or a few pounds of weight to each exercise to progress You want to challenge yourself, not kill yourself. The first few weeks, focus on learning how to do each exercise rather than on how much weight you're lifting or how many exercises you're doing. You have plenty of time to build muscle! After 6 or more weeks of consistent strength training, you can change your routine to make it more difficult (see below) Stretch between sets and after your workout.
You should work all of your muscle groups each week so that you avoid muscle imbalances, which could lead to injury. Below is a list of muscle groups along with sample exercises using both machines and free weights. If you're a beginner, you only need to choose one.
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Chest: bench press, chest press machine, pushups, pec deck machine Back: seated row machine, back extensions, lat pulldowns Shoulders: overhead press, lateral raise, front raise Biceps: bicep curls, hammer curls, concentration curls Triceps: tricep extensions, dips, kickbacks Quadriceps: Squats, lunges, leg extension and leg press machines Hamstrings: deadlifts, lunges, leg curl machine Calves: calf raises Abdominals: crunches, reverse crunches, oblique twists, pelvic tilts
Choosing Your Sets, Reps and Weight Choosing your reps, sets and weight can be the most confusing part of strength training. How many reps and sets you do will depend on your goals.
To lose body fat, build muscle: Use enough weight that you can ONLY complete 10-12 repetitions and 1-3 sets (1 for beginners, 2-3 for intermediate and advanced exercisers). Rest about 30 seconds-1 minute between sets and at least one day between workout sessions For muscle gain: Use enough weight that you can ONLY complete 6-8 repetitions and 3+sets, resting for 1-2 minutes between sets and 3 or more days between sessions. For beginners, give yourself several weeks of conditioning before you tackle weight training with this degree of difficulty. You may need a spotter for many exercises. For health and muscular endurance: Use enough weight that you can ONLY complete 12-16 repetitions, 1-3 sets, resting 20-30 seconds between sets and at least one day between workout sessions.
To determine how much weight you should use, start with a light weight and perform one set. Continue adding weight until you can ONLY do the desired number of repetitions
C. Weight Training
If you want to lose fat or change your body, one of the most important things you can do is lift weights. Diet and cardio are equally important, but when it comes to changing how your body looks, weight training wins hands down. If you've hesitated to start a strength training program, it may motivate you to know that lifting weights can: • • • • • • Help raise your metabolism. Muscle burns more calories than fat, so the more muscle you have, the more calories you'll burn all day long. Strengthen bones, especially important for women Make you stronger and increase muscular endurance Help you avoid injuries Increase your confidence and self-esteem Improve coordination and balance
Getting started with strength training can be confusing--what exercises should you do? How many sets and reps? How much weight? The routine you choose will be based on your fitness goals as well as the equipment you have available and the time you have for workouts.
If you're setting up your own program, you'll need to know some basic strength training principles. These principles will teach you how to make sure you're using enough weight, determine your sets and reps and insure you're always progressing in your workouts.
Overload: If you want to get stronger, you need to use more resistance than your muscles are used to. This is important because the more you do, the more your body is capable of doing, so you should increase your workload to avoid adaptation. In plain language, this means you should be lifting enough weight that you can ONLY complete the desired number of reps. You should be able to finish your last rep with difficulty but also with good form. 2. Progression. In order to avoid plateaus (or adaptation), you need to increase your intensity. With strength training, you can do this by increasing the amount of weight lifted, increasing the sets/reps, increasing or changing the exercises you're doing and/or change the rest intervals
between sets. You can also change the order of your exercises. This means increasing your intensity every week. 3. Specificity. This principle states that the way your body adapts to exercise depends on the type of exercise you're doing. That means, if you want to increase your strength, your program should be designed around that goal. To gain strength and mass, you want to train with heavier weights closer to your 1 RM (1 rep max). If you want to build endurance and strength, you'll want to stick with lighter weights and a rep range of 8-12. 4. Rest and Recovery. Rest days are just as important as workout days. It is during these rest periods that your muscles grow and change, so make sure you're not working the same muscle groups 2 days in a row.
Before you get started on setting up your routine, keep a few key points in mind:
1. Always warm up before you start lifting weights. This helps get your muscles warm
and prevent injury. You can warm up with light cardio or by doing a light set of each exercise before going to heavier weights. 2. Lift and lower your weights slowly. Don't use momentum to lift the weight. If you have to swing to get the weight up, chances are you're using too much weight. 3. Breathe. Don't hold your breath and make sure you're using full range of motion throughout the movement. 4. Stand up straight! If your mother could see you now, she'd probably slap a book on your head. Pay attention to your posture and keep everything straight. Engage your abs in every movement you're doing to keep your balance and protect your spine. For beginners, choose at least one exercise per muscle group. The list below offers some examples:
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Chest: bench press, chest press machine, pushups, pec deck machine Back: one-armed row, seated row machine, back extensions, lat pulldowns Shoulders: overhead press, lateral raise, front raise Biceps: bicep curls, hammer curls, concentration curls Triceps: tricep extensions, dips, kickbacks Quadriceps: Squats, lunges, leg extension and leg press machines Hamstrings: deadlifts, lunges, leg curl machine Abs: crunches, reverse crunches, oblique twists, pelvic tilts
How Much Weight To Use The easiest way to determine how much weight you should use on each lift is to guess (not very scientific, huh?): 1. Pick up a light weight and do a warm up set of the exercise of your choice, aiming for about 10 to 16 repetitions. 2. For set 2, increase your weight by 5 or more pounds and perform your goal number of repetitions. If you can do more than your desired number of reps, heavy up again for your 3rd set. 3. In general, you should be lifting enough weight that you can ONLY do the desired reps. You should be struggling by the last rep, but still able to finish it with good form. 4. It may take awhile to find the right amount of weight for each exercise. 5. In general, you can use heavier weights with larger muscle groups such as chest, back and legs. You'll need smaller weights for the shoulders and arms.
How Long To Rest Between Exercises/Workout Sessions Again, this will depend on your goal. Higher intensity (i.e., when lifting heavy) exercise requires a longer rest. When lifting to fatigue, it takes an average of 3 to 5 minutes for your muscles to rest for the next set. When using lighter weight and more repetitions, it takes between 30 seconds and 1 minute for your muscles to rest. The American College of Sports Medicine recommends training each muscle group 2 to 3 times a week. But, the number of times you lift each week will depend on your training method. In order for muscles to repair and grow, you'll need about 48 hours of rest between workout sessions.
1. Full Body Workout
This workout uses the Smith machine, which can be found at most health clubs. You can do this workout with dumbbells, barbells, tubing or comparable health club machines. Alternate each lower body and upper body exercise, doing each for 12 to 16 repetitions. Repeat each pair of upper and lower exercises once (beginners-use no weight), twice (intermediate) or three times (advanced) before moving on to the next set of exercises. Do this workout 1-3 non-consecutive days a week and be sure to warm up with light cardio and stretch between sets.
PUSH and PULL
There are approximately one zillion ways to set up a strength program...you can do total body workouts or split routines such as upper and lower body, opposing muscle groups or even one muscle group each day. I'm a fan of total body workouts but I don't always have time to hit all my muscle groups in the time I have. My solution? A push/pull routine that saves some time while allowing me to work my entire body in two different workouts. The Push Workout involves pushing exercises which typically focus on the quads, outer thighs, chest, shoulders and triceps. The Pull Workout works the opposite muscles of the butt, hamstrings, back and biceps. If you're looking for something new to try, check out my Push and Pull Workouts for intermediate/advanced exercisers.
2. Total Core Workout
This intermediate/advanced Total Core Workout targets all the muscles of the torso include the abs, back and pelvis. These are dynamic exercises using an exercise ball and resistance band or tube. Take care when performing these exercises and avoid arching the back. If you find this difficult, you can place a rolled up towel under the lower back/hips for extra support. As always, avoid any exercise that causes pain and check with your doctor if you have any injuries or medical conditions.
Horizontal Wood Chops Wrap tube or band around a sturdy object and stand to the left, holding handles in both hands. Keeping the arms straight, swing the arms across the body and rotate towards the left, contracting the abs. Return to start and repeat for 10-12 reps before switching sides.
Ball Pass Begin by lying on your back with the legs straight up (bend them if needed) and holding the
ball straight up over the body. (A) Put the ball between the feet, squeezing them to keep the ball in place, and lower both the arms and legs down towards the floor. (B) Bring them back up and take the ball in your hands. (C) Lower the arms and legs down towards the floor again and continue, exchanging the ball between the hands and feet for 8-12 reps.
Ball Plank with Leg Lift Get into plank position with the feet/shins resting on the ball, hands under shoulders and abs contracted. Keeping the core tight, lift the right leg off the ball a few inches and lower. Lift the left leg off the ball and lower. Continue alternating legs for 8-10 reps on each side.
Reverse Hyper-Extension on the Ball Lie face down on the ball and roll forward until you're resting on your forearms, legs straight and toes resting on the floor. Keeping the legs straight, lift them up until the body is in a straight line, concentrating on the lower back. Lower the legs slightly and repeat for 10-12 reps.
Roll Ups with the Ball Begin seated on the floor, legs and spine straight and the ball extended out in front of you. Pull the abs in and engage the pelvis as you roll down onto the mat, feeling each vertebrae make contact, taking the ball over the head. Roll back up to start taking the ball up and reaching forward as you come back to sitting. Repeat for 10-12 reps and bend the knees to modify this move if your back is arching off the floor.
b Plank Press-Ups on the Ball On your knees, place you forearms on the ball and roll forward a bit until your back is flat. Straighten the knees and bring the body into a plank position. Hold for 1-2 seconds, lower the knees and repeat for 10-12 reps.
Jacknife Begin lying on the floor with the legs straight up (knees slightly bent if needed) and hold the
ball behind the head. Lower the legs a few inches and then bring the ball up as you bring the legs in, touching the ball to the toes in a full crunch. Lower and repeat for 10-12 reps.
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Do this workout 2-3 non-consecutive days a week Each exercise should be slow and controlled. Don't use momentum and don't allow the back to arch. Modify any exercises as needed or skip any moves that cause pain Beginners: Start with this Beginner Abs Workout if these moves are too difficult. Int/Adv: Perform 1-3 sets of each exercise or go through the exercises circuit-style, one after the other and repeat if desired.
3. Office Exercise
Click pictures for closer look Stretches for Your Wrists and Arms Wrist Stretch: Extend arm in front, palm up and grab fingers with other hand. Gently pull hand down to stretch the forearm. Repeat other side. Wrist & Forearm: Press hands together in front of chest, elbows bent and parallel to the floor. Gently bend wrists to the right and left. Back Twist: Sit upright in chair and place left arm behind left hip. Twist to the left and hold, repeating on other side. Leg Extension, Hip Flexion and Inner Thigh Leg Extension: Sit in chair, abs in. Extend left leg until level with hip. Hold for 2 seconds, repeat other side. Hip Flexion: Sitting in chair, lift left foot off the floor a few inches, knee bent. Hold 2 seconds and repeat other side. Inner Thigh: Place full water bottle between knees and, keeping abs in, squeeze bottle gently. Repeat.
Chair Squat and Tricep Dips Chair Squat: Periodically while sitting, lift butt off the seat and hover over chair for 2-3 seconds. Stand up and repeat. Dips: Make sure chair is stable and place hands next to hips. Move hips in front of chair and bend elbows, lowering body until elbows are at 90 degrees. Repeat. Standing Leg Exercises Standing Hip Flexion: Stand with abs in, spine straight. Lift leg up until level with hip. Hold for 2 seconds, repeat other side. Leg Lift: In same starting position as above, lift left leg straight out to the side a few inches off the floor. Hold for 2 seconds, repeat on the other side. Front Raise, Overhead Press and Bicep Curl Front Raise: Sit in chair, abs in and spine straight. Hold water bottle in right hand and raise arm up to shoulder level. Hold 2 seconds and repeat other side. Overhead Press: Hold water bottle in right hand, elbow bent, and extend arm overhead. Repeat other side. Bicep Curl: Hold water bottle in right hand and, with abs in and spine straight, curl bottle towards shoulder. Repeat other side. Abs Abs: Sit on the edge of chair, arms extending in front. Keeping back straight, contract the abs and slowly lower torso towards back of chair. Hold 2-3 seconds and repeat. Curls: Cross arms over chest and sit up straight. Contract abs and curl shoulder towards hips, pulling abs in. Hold for 2 seconds and repeat
4. 30 Minute Compound Workout This workout targets upper and lower body with compound exercises. It is not for beginners. If you're a beginner, start with the Total Body Workout for Beginners.
Warm up with 5-10 minutes of light cardio You can do this workout as a circuit, going through each exercise and performing each one after the other for 30 seconds to 1 minute, repeating the circuit as many times as you like. You can also do this as a traditional workout, doing 2-3 sets of 12-16 repetitions and rest 30 seconds-1 minute between sets. Always check with your doctor if you have any injuries or conditions. 31
Squats With Pushups Begin on hands and toes, knees bent, abs tight. Bend knees deeper into a squat and jump back into pushup position. Either staying on toes or lowering knees to the floor, lower body into pushup. Jump back to start and repeat.
Bent Over Row On One Leg Hold dumbbells in both hands and bend at the hips, keeping back flat and stomach tight, until upper body is parallel to the floor. Lift one leg up until level with hips and pull dumbbells towards your rib cage in a rowing motion. Continue holding this position as you row the arms up and down.
Plié Squat with upright row Begin with feet wider than shoulders, toes out, holding weights or bar in front of body. Bend knees and lower into a squat, knees in line with toes. Simultaneously, bend elbows and raise weight to chest level leading with the elbows. Stand, lower weight and repeat
Front lunge with lateral raise Holding weights, step forward into a lunge, bending both knees to 90 degrees, front knee behind toe and elbows bent. As you lunge, lift arms straight out to the sides, elbows bent to 90 degrees, parallel to the ground. Step back to start, lower arms and repeat
Static Lunges with Bicep Curls/Shoulder Press Stand in split stance and lower into a lunge. As you lunge, curl weights into bicep curls. At the bottom of the lunge, lift arms straight up overhead, lower arms and stand. Repeat for all reps and switch legs.
Deadlifts with shrugs Stand with feet hip distance apart holding dumbbells facing thighs. Tip from the hips 32
and lower upper body towards the floor-back flat, knees slightly bent and dumbbells close to the body. Squeeze butt to raise up and, still at a slight angle, shrug the shoulders up towards the ears. Lower the shoulders and repeat, alternating deadlifts and shrugs.
Dips with leg extension Place weights on the floor next to the hips and hold onto them as you begin pushed off the floor, knees bent. Bend the elbows and lower the body towards the floor as you extend the right leg straight out. Lower the leg as you push back up and repeat, alternating legs for each rep.
Horizontal Wood Chops Wrap tube or band around a sturdy object and stand to the left, holding handles in both hands. Keeping the arms straight, swing the arms across the body and rotate towards the left, contracting the abs. Return to start and repeat before switching sides.
This workout targets all the muscles in the body by combining exercises together. These exercises are advanced so take your time and try the workout with light weights until you get used to the moves.
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Beginner: Try 1 set of the exercises with no weights or, for easier exercises, try a Beginner Strength Workout. For int/advanced: 2-3 sets of 12-16 repetitions with a 20 to 30 second rest in between sets. When choosing your weight, make sure you have enough to challenge you but not so much that you can't complete the exercises. Check with your doctor if you have any injuries or medical conditions.
Deadlifts with Lunge With weights in front of thighs, tip from the hips with the knees slightly bent and lower the weights to the knees or mid-shin. Squeeze the hams and glutes to come up then take the right leg back into a lunge. Come back to start and repeat with the left leg. Targets: the entire lower body.
Squat with Overhead Press Stand on a BOSU (as shown) or floor and hold dumbbells at ear level, elbows bent. Lower into a squat, abs in and back straight and push back up while pushing the weights straight overhead. Targets: quads, hamstrings, glutes, and shoulders
Dumbbell Row on One Leg Bend torso parallel to the floor holding a weight in the right hand. Take the left leg up behind you and balance on the right leg as you bend the arm, bringing the elbow up to torso level and squeezing the back. Targets: standing leg, back, arms.
Front Kick/Bicep Curls Stand holding weights and take the right knee up level with the hips. Do a bicep curl and, at the same time, extend the right leg out, squeezing the quad. Return to start and repeat for 8 reps. Switch legs and finish up the set. Targets: quads, hip flexors, biceps.
Chest Flies with Inner Thigh Squeeze Lie on the floor with legs in the air and squeeze a ball between the feet. Hold weights straight up over the chest and lower the arms down towards the floor, keeping the elbows slightly bent. Return to start, keeping pressure on the ball throughout the flies. This exercise works the chest and inner thighs.
Push Up with Leg Lift In pushup position (on the knees or toes), lower into a pushup keeping the abs contracted. Pushup back up and lift the right leg off the floor and out to the side. Repeat the pushup, lifting the left leg. Alternate for 8-10 reps. Targets: chest, arms and glutes
Front Raise with Tricep Extension Sit or stand holding weights with the palms facing in. Sweep the arms up and overhead until the arms are next to the ears. Bend the elbows and lower the weights behind the head. Straighten the arms and sweep them back down.
5. Full Body Workout
This full body workout targets all the muscles of the body and can be done at home or at the gym with any type of resistance.
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Beginners-start with no weight (or light weight) and do for 1 set of 12-16 reps Intermediate/Advanced: Do 2-3 sets of 10-12 reps with enough weight that you can ONLY complete the desired number of repetitions. Warm up with 5 to 10 of light cardio or do warm up sets of each exercise with light weight. Rest at least one day before doing this workout again. Check with your doctor before you begin any type of exercise program Bench Press (Chest) Lie on a bench, step or floor and hold barbell straight up over chest with hands a few inches wider than shoulders, elbows soft. Bend elbows and lower the weight until your elbows reach no more than 90 degrees (going below that will involve your shoulders). Press weight back up, making sure not to lock elbows. Can also be done with dumbbells or on a chest press machine.
Lateral Raise (Shoulders)Stand with feet hip-width apart and hold dumbbells at sides. Keeping elbows slightly bent, lift arms straight up to the sides, stopping at shoulder level and lower back down. Keep elbows bent and don't go above shoulder level.
Lateral Raise Barbell Row (Back) Stand in wide stance holding barbell in front of thighs. Bend knees and tilt the torso (back straight/abs in) forward about 45 degrees, straightening the arms so the barbell is out in front of knees. Keeping this stance, bend the elbows and squeeze the back to bring the barbell in towards the belly button and straighten back out.
Barbell Row Back Extension (Back) Lie facedown on the floor and place hands behind head (advanced) or fold them behind your back. Contract your lower back to lift your chest a few inches off the floor and lower back down. You can simultaneously lift legs for more intense exercise.
Hammer Curls on One Leg Kickbacks (Triceps) Stand with left foot on step (or floor) and hold a weight in the right hand. Bend torso forward, keeping back flat and abs in, and rest left elbow on the knee for stabilization. Pull the arm up next to rib cage, elbow bent and straighten the arm out behind you, squeezing the back of your arm without moving elbow. Lower back down and repeat.
Hammer Curls (Biceps)Stand on one leg for a balance challenge and hold dumbbells at sides, palms facing the thighs. Bend the elbows and bring the weight towards the shoulders in bicep curl, taking care not to move the elbows. Lower back down (but keep tension by not relaxing all the way) and repeat. This version of curls involves more forearm than traditional curls.
Kickbacks Deadlifts (Glutes, hamstrings and back) Stand with feet hip-width apart and hold weights in front of thighs. Bend knees slightly and tip from the hips to lower torso towards the floor, weights close to legs, stopping at mid-shin. Squeeze the butt and 36
hamstrings to raise back up. Make sure back is flat throughout the movement and abs are in. This is NOT a squat, so don't bend knees. Static Lunge (quads, hamstrings, glutes)Stand in split stance, right leg in front, left leg in back. Holding weights (or none), bend both knees and lower into a lunge, keeping front knee BEHIND the toe and knees no lower than 90 degree angles. Squeeze through the heel to raise back up.
Lunge Squats (quads, hamstrings, glutes) Stand with feet hip-width apart, abs in. Holding barbell on shoulders or dumbbells in hands, bend knees and lower body into a squat position as low as you can go, but stopping when knees are at 90 degrees. Pretend like you are sitting back into a chair (stick your butt out) and keep your knees BEHIND your toes. Push through the heels and squeeze the butt to lift back to starting position.
6. Total Body Workout with Gliding Discs (bučice) This workout involves using Gliding Discs for added intensity and resistance. Gliding discs simply add a different kind of intensity to your usual exercises by helping you engage multiple muscle groups while stabilizing your body using your core. If you don't have Gliding Discs, you can use paper plates, a towel on hardwood floors or even a Frisbee. Take care and test them before you exercise--they may get away from you if you're not careful. Do this workout on it's own or add it on to your usual strength routine for variety and challenge. For Beginners: Do one set of 8-16 repetitions of each exercise 2-3 times a week, with at least one day of rest between workouts. For Intermediate/Advanced: Do 2-3 sets of 8-16 repetitions of each exercise 2-3 times a week with at least one day of rest between workouts. Make sure you...
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Warm up with 5-10 minutes of cardio and stretching Cool down with a long stretch Drink plenty of water 37
Add weight whenever you can to challenge your body.
One-Legged Squat Stand with left heel resting on the Glider. Keeping the abs engaged and the torso straight, bend the right knee while sliding the left heel out in front, pressing into the floor with your heel. Squat as low as you can while keeping your knee behind your toe. Straighten the right leg as you slide the left foot back to starting position.
Standing Leg Circles Stand with right foot resting on Glider, holding onto a bar or chair for balance. Press into the Glider and, keeping pressure on it, slowly push right foot forward (squatting with the standing leg) and trace a circle on the floor. Repeat for all reps and switch legs. Remember to really press into the floor and keep it nice and slow.
Lunge Slide Stand with feet hip-width apart, toe of left foot resting on the Glider (hold onto a chair for balance if you need to). Bend the right leg while sliding the left foot back into a lunge position, keeping the right knee behind the toe, torso upright and abs in. Slowly slide left foot back to starting position and repeat for all reps before switching sides. Hold dumbbells for added intensity
Glide Abduction/Adduction Begin on all fours with one leg straight out behind you or in a plank position (more difficult), toe resting on the Glider. Pressing into the floor, slowly slide the leg straight out to the side as far as you comfortably can, squeezing the glutes. Be sure to keep the hip, knee and ankle in alignment, pointing towards the floor. Still pressing into the floor, squeeze the inner thigh to slide the foot back to starting position
Hamstring Slides Lie face up with knees bent, a Glide placed under the right foot. Lift the hips off the floor into a bridge position and, holding this position, press into the floor and slide the right foot out in front of you. Contract the hamstring and continue pressing into the floor as you slide the right foot back to starting position. Repeat for all reps and switch sides.
Pushups Begin in pushup position, either on the toes or knees, with Gliders under both hands directly under the shoulders. Slide hands out to either side and lower into a pushup. As you push up, slide the hands back together and repeat. For added intensity, do the pushups on toes (see picture).
Lat Pulls Lie on your left side, knees slightly bent and head resting on your arm. Place your right hand on Glider in front of you and press into the floor as you slide the arm in a half circle up near your head. Contract the lat muscles and press into the floor to slide hand back to start position. Go slowly and really press into the floor--this one is a bit subtle and takes a little time to get the hang of. Repeat for all reps and switch sides.
Ab Slides Begin in pushup position on knees, hands directly below the shoulders and resting on Gliders. Contract the abs and very slowly slide the hands straight out in front of you. Only go as far as you can without hurting your back! Slide back to start and repeat. Be careful with this one--if you feel back pain or lose control of the Gliders (AKA- a face plant), skip it.
7. Exercise - No Weight Workout This is a full body strength training workout that can be done with no equipment. Perform this workout 2 or 3 nonconsecutive days a week, making sure to warm up with 5 or 10 minutes of light cardio and end your workout with a stretch. How to Do It: Beginners: Do each exercise for 1 set of 15 to 20 repetitions. Intermediates: Do each exercise for 2 or more sets of 15 to 20 repetitions, with short rest periods between sets. Advanced: Do each exercise for 3 or more sets of 15 to 20 repetitions, with short rest periods between sets. Make these exercises more challenging by: (1) Using only one limb at a time, such as doing one legged squats, one arm pushups, etc. (2) Taking a full 10 seconds for each repetition. Don't lock the joints. (3) Concentrate on the muscle you're working.
On knees or toes, place hands about 6 inches wider than your shoulders. Inhale as you lower your body towards the floor, maintaining a straight line from head to toe. Exhale as you push your body back up. Don't sink in the middle or pike your buttocks in the air and only lower your body until your shoulders are in line with your elbows.
Place your feet shoulder width apart, abs pulled in. Squat down slowly as you sit back on your heels keeping good posture with chest up, shoulders back, and chin level. Lower as far as you can, keeping knees behind the toes and not going below 90 degrees. Tip: place a chair behind you and act like you're about to sit down, pulling up before actually sitting. Stand in a split stance, holding onto a chair for balance (if needed). With weight evenly distributed over each foot, slowly lower towards the floor. Keep both knees at 90 degree angles, and do not allow the front knee to extend over the toe. Push through the heel, contract the glutes and push up without locking the knees. Stand with feet together and take a giant step forward, lowering into a lunge and keeping knees at 90 degree angles. Push up and step forward with other leg. Alternate legs for one+ laps around the room. Stand with feet hip distance apart, holding onto a chair for balance (if needed). Slowly lift right leg out to the side, keeping hip, knee, ankle and toes all in alignment, foot flexed. Raise leg about 2 feet, squeeze glute and slowly lower back down without relaxing the muscle. Repeat and then switch legs. Be sure to keep the standing leg slightly bent. Sit on chair or bench and place hands next to hips. Move hips in front of chair and bend elbows, lowering body until elbows are at 90 degrees. Keep shoulders down and butt close to chair. Lie face down with hands either behind the back or lightly cradling the head. Lift upper body off the ground a few inches, keeping head and neck in alignment. For a challenge, lift feet off the ground keeping legs straight (knees don't have to be together), hold for 2-4 counts. Stand on a step, bench or platform (you might need to hold onto a chair or the wall for
Standing Side Leg Lift
balance). Take one foot and hang it off the side of the step. Bend the standing knee and lower into a one-legged squat, lowering the heel towards the floor. Be sure to keep the standing knee behind the toe. Stand on a step or on the floor, holding onto a chair for balance (if needed). Slowly push up onto the tips of your toes, contracting the calves. Lower back down without relaxing and repeat.
8. No Equipment Workout
This workout targets the entire body and is great for travelers or those who don't have a lot of equipment. All you need is a thick phone book (or any other thick, heavy book) and a stool or chair. Some exercises are very advanced, so use caution and modify the workout to fit your fitness level. 1. Begin with a warm up of light cardio 2. Beginners perform 1 set of 12-16 reps of each exercise, modifying each move to fit your fitness level 3. Intermediate/Advanced: Performs 2-3 sets of 10-16 reps with short rests in between 4. Add intensity by adding weights or slowing the movements down
Staggered Pushups Try a different version of your usual pushup by putting one hand on a phone book (or any other object) and the other on the floor. On your knees or toes (and with body straight) lower down into a pushup and push back up. Do as many as you can and move on. Good Mornings Stand with feet about hip-width apart holding phone book (or medium weight) straight up overhead. Keeping abs braced and knees slightly bent, tip from the hips and lower the torso until it is parallel to the floor, keeping the arms in line with ears. Lift up and repeat. Keep the abs braced throughout the move. If you have any back problems, skip this move! Pike Shoulder Pushup This is a very advanced exercise, so use caution! Place your toes on a step or stool and hands on the floor. Lift your body up into
a pike position with your hands directly under your shoulders and the top of your head facing the floor. Bend the elbows and lower body into a pushup. Push back up and repeat. The move is shown on a ball which is even more advanced. Be careful! Rear Delt Fly With feet hip-width apart, tip from the hips until back is flat and parallel to the floor, abs braced. Lift the arms straight out to the sides to shoulder level with thumbs pointing up to the ceiling. Lower and repeat. Add light weights for intensity...if this hurts your shoulders, skip it! Triceps Dips Sit on a bench or chair with hands resting next to thighs. Push up and bring the hips out, butt just brushing the bench, knees bent. Bend the elbows and lower body down (staying close to bench) until elbows are 90 degrees. Push up and repeat. Straighten the legs for more intensity. Triceps One-Armed Pushup Lie down on left side, hips and knees stacked. Wrap the left arm around torso so that left hand is resting on the right waist. Place the right hand on the floor in front of you, palm parallel to the body. Squeeze the triceps and push your body up. Lower and repeat before switching sides. Squats on Tiptoes With feet wider than hips, squat down and place hands on phone book in front of you. Raise up on the tips of your toes. Staying on tiptoes and fingertips, lift hips up towards the ceiling and straighten the knees as much as you can. Squat back down and repeat, staying in tiptoes the entire time. Modify by placing hands higher (on a chair or bed). Lunge with Arms Overhead Stand in split stance with feet about 3 feet apart. Hold phone book or weight straight up overhead. Bend the knees and lower into a lunge, bringing both knees to 90 degree angles, front knee behind toe. Keeping weight overhead, push back up and repeat before switching legs. Single Leg Lift and Squat Place hands behind the back and tip forward until back is parallel to the floor and flat, abs braced. Take right leg out to the side, resting on toe. Squat down with the left leg while simultaneously lifting the right leg a few inches off the ground and out to the side, leg straight. Straighten and repeat for all reps
before switching sides. Calf Raise Stand on phone book with heels hanging off the back. Keeping body straight, lift the body up onto tiptoes by contracting the calves. Lower and repeat. You can do this on the floor as well. Oblique Abs Sit with legs bent, back straight, arms extended straight out in front of you. Contract the abs and sweep right arm down and behind you in a half-circle motion, leaning the torso back a few inches. Sit back up and repeat on other side.
9. Circuit Training The circuit training workout is comprised of two circuits, each with six strength/cardio exercises that are completed one right after the other, with little or no rest in between. You'll do each exercise for a specified amount of time (or as long as you can safely do so) and then move on to the next exercise. Once you complete all exercises, that is considered one circuit. Make sure you warm up with 5-10 minutes of light cardio and cool down with a stretch. Times are suggestion only-please modify according to your fitness level and perceived exertion.
• • •
Beginners: Complete Circuit I once Intermediates: Complete both circuits once (or more) Advanced: Complete both circuits 3 or more times
Exercises/Duration Squats Stand in front of a chair with feet hip-width apart, abs in and torso straight. Slowly bend your knees and lower and until you're almost touching your butt to the chair. Repeat for 30 seconds and add a few seconds each week Jumping Rope (jump with or without a rope) 30 seconds to 1 minute Jump with both feet together, jumping only an an inch or so off the floor. Example
Static Lunges Stand in split stance, right foot in front. Bend the knees and lower body into lunge position, keeping the right knee behind the toe, torso upright and abs in. 30 seconds, then switch legs for 30 seconds Jog or Walk Up to 5 minutes Push Ups - On Knees or Toes 30 seconds to 1 minute Kickboxing 3 minutes (i.e., squat with front kick, alternating legs) Kickboxing Videos - Kickboxing Tips
Exercises/Duration Squat/Lateral Raise (use light or no weight) Stand with feet hip-width apart, abs in and torso straight. Slowly bend knees into a squat, keeping knees behind toes. At the same time, raise arms up to shoulder level. Lower arms and stand up. Repeat for 30 seconds Side-to-Side jump 20-30 seconds Plank with Leg Extension 10-30 seconds each side Jump roping (with or without rope) 30 seconds to 1 minute Lunge with Biceps Curls (use light or no weight) 20-30 seconds each leg Place a pillow, phone book or step on the floor and stand to one side. Jump from side to side over the object, landing with knees bent and abs in. In plank position (on knees or toes), slowly lift one leg while keeping hips and shoulders square, abs in. Switch legs. Jump on one foot for half the time and switch legs for the remainder, jumping only an an inch or so off the floor. In split stance, slowly lower into lunge (front and back legs at 90 degrees), and curl forearms towards shoulders. Example
Back Extensions 30 seconds
1. Abs and Back Try these unique and challenging exercises for the abdominals and the lower back for a strong, functional torso. Scroll to the bottom for instructions. See your doctor before you begin any type of exercise program and modify the exercises where needed.
Bridge with Leg Lift Lie face up on the floor, knees bent. Push body into a bridge position, supporting your weight on your feet and arms. Straighten one leg up, heel flexed and slowly lower leg out to the side a few inches WITHOUT moving the rest of the body. Use the abs to stabilize your body and don't hold your breath. Do all reps on one leg, then switch sides. Balancing Ab Twist Begin by lying on your side and push up so that your body is supported by right arm, feet stacked. Straighten left arm and balance for a moment, then sweep the left arm down and twist the body, turning it towards the floor while keeping the rest of the body in place. Squeeze the abs and hold for 2 seconds, then go back to starting position. Wheel Slide Using an ab wheel, adjustable dumbbell (see picture) OR simply a piece of cardboard, begin on hands and knees with wheel in front, arms straight, abs pulled in. Roll wheel out, keeping abs tight (DO NOT ARCH BACK!) as far as you can comfortably go, then squeeze the abs to roll body back to starting position. Each workout, go a little further out. Bicycle Lie face up with lower back pressed to the floor. Cradle head in your hands, elbows out, and bend right knee, pulling it towards your
chest while touching the knee with the opposite elbow. Begin a slow pedal motion by touching opposite elbow to opposite knee, alternating each side. Keep the abs pulled in (don't let them bulge out) and breath continuously. Deadlifts Hold a barbell or dumbbells in front of thighs, feet hip-width apart and abs pulled in. Tipping from the hips and keeping the weight close to your legs, lower the weight to mid-shin (or wherever is comfortable) while keeping the legs straight (but not locked). Lift back to starting position and make sure the abs are pulled tight throughout the movement. Back Extensions Lie face down with hands either behind the back or lightly cradling the head. Lift upper body off the ground a few inches, keeping head and neck in alignment. For a challenge, then lift feet off the ground keeping legs straight (knees don't have to be together), hold for 2-4 counts and lower.
The Workout • Do this workout 3-4 non-consecutive days a week • Perform each exercise for 1-3 sets of 10-12 repetitions (beginners start with 1 set of 10 reps) Perfect Form Pointers: • Keep body stabilized throughout the movement • Don't swing or use momentum • Take 4-6 seconds for each repetition • Make sure abs are pulled in tight throughout each movement Always... •Warm up with 5-10 minutes of cardio •Do this workout in addition to an upper body, lower body workout and regular cardio exercise for best results. • Lowering your calories can help you lose more body fat
2. Beginner Abs & Back
The following exercises are basic moves targeting the abs and back. Always avoid any exercises that cause pain and, if you feel lower back strain, modify the move to a comfortable range of motion or place a rolled up towel under your hips to support your lower back. • • • • Check with your doctor if you have any injuries or medical conditions Warm up with some light cardio before this workout Perform each exercise for at least 1 set of 10-16 reps. Do each exercise slowly and focus on good form for each rep
Crunches Lie on your back with your hands crossed across your chest or with your fingers on the sides of your head. Place your feet on the floor with legs bent. To begin the exercise, lift your torso, lifting shoulder blades off the floor and crunching your rib cage towards your lower belly. Hold for two counts, then lower slowly to the starting position. Repeat. Reverse Crunches Lie on your back with knees bent, feet a few inches off the floor. Slowly contract the abdominals, focusing on rotating the pelvis up and bringing your knees towards your rib cage. Concentrate on letting your abs do the work. Hold at the top then slowly lower your knees to the starting position. Repeat. Oblique Crossover Crunches Lie on your back with knees bent, hands behind your head. Keeping lower back pressed into the floor, lift your shoulder blades off the floor and then curl your upper body diagonally across your body towards your right knee. Contract your abs and obliques as hard as you can at the top of the movement. Lower back down and repeat on the same side before switching sides. Plank Begin by placing elbows on the floor and resting body on the knees. Pull the abs tight to hold your body in a straight line from head to knees without sagging in the middle, eyes looking naturally forward. Hold this position for as long as you can, relax and repeat 3 or more times. Dead Bug Begin by lying on back, knees up and bent at 90 degrees. Take the arms straight up overhead and hold this position for a moment, making sure abs are in tight and your back isn't arching off the floor (if it is, lower the feet to the ground for this exercise). Slowly lower the right arm and left leg towards the floor while keeping the lower back on the floor. Bring them back up and lower the left arm and right leg to the floor. Continue lowering opposite arm and leg for a total of 10 reps. Back Extensions Lie face down with hands either behind the back or lightly cradling the head. Lift upper body off the ground a few inches, keeping head and neck in alignment. For a challenge, then lift feet off the ground keeping legs straight (knees don't have to be together), hold for 2-4 counts and lower.
Superhumans Begin on hands and knees, hand directly under shoulders, knees under hips and back straight, abs tight. Slowly raise right arm and left leg up until level with the body, holding your balance and keeping torso tight. Lower back down and repeat with the left arm and right leg. Take your time--this exercise will challenge your balance!
3. Exercises for Your Abs
On the previous page, I mention the fact that ab exercises won't reduce fat over the belly. That doesn't mean you should skip ab exercises, but what it does mean is that maybe there are more dynamic ways to work your core that involve more muscle groups and force the abs to work in a more functional way. By involving more muscles, you'll burn more calories during your workout, which is a plus if you're trying to reduce body fat and trim your middle. The following exercises offer a variety of moves, from beginning to advanced, using a variety of tools to build core strength. • • • Beginners, perform 1 set of 10-12 reps of each exercise. If these moves are difficult, start with this Beginner Abs Workout Int/Adv, perform 1-3 sets of 10-16 reps Get familiar with the ball and the exercises and progress slowly
Instructions Ball Crunch Lie with the ball resting under the mid/lower back and place hands behind the head or across the chest. Contract your abs to lift your the torso off the ball, pulling the bottom of your ribcage down toward your hips. As you curl up, keep the ball stable. Crunch & Reach Begin with body straight over the ball, light weight extended behind you (not shown). Contract the abs to lift and bring the weight over the head, crunching up and twisting to the right, contracting the right side of waist. Repeat for all reps and then switch sides. Modified Plank Begin by placing elbows on the floor and resting body on the knees. Pull the abs tight to hold your body in a straight line from head to knees without sagging in the middle, eyes looking naturally forward. Hold this position for as long as you can, relax and repeat 3 or more times. Knee Tucks Start in plank position on the ball, with the ball under the shins/ankles. Roll the ball towards you with your feet, tightening the abs into a crunch.
Woodchops Attach one end of a resistance band to something sturdy and wrap the band around your hand a few times for the right tension. Grasp the band in both hands and begin in a lunge position, reaching down with the arms Keeping the arms straight the entire time, rotate and lift the body towards the other side while sweeping the arms on a diagonal. Return to start and repeat before moving onto the other side. Hip Extension on the Ball Lie on the floor with feet heels propped on ball. Keeping abs tight, slowly lift your hips off the floor (squeezing the buttocks) until body is in a straight line. Hold for a few seconds and lower Ball Taps Sit on the ball with strong abs and straight spine, hands behind the head. Contract your abs and lift the right foot, tapping it on a medicine ball in front of you. Lower and repeat with the other foot, alternating sides. Use your abs to keep your balance.
How to Work Your Abs • • You can effectively work your abs with 3 non-consecutive workouts a week Do 1-3 sets of 12-16 reps of each exercise. If that's too easy, make sure you're doing each exercise correctly and using perfect form. You can add a dumbbell or plate to
crunches to add difficulty.
4. Ab and Core Progression
This Ab and Core Progression Workout shows some examples of how to progress from beginner exercises to moves that are a little more advanced. You'll know you're ready to move on to the next progression once you've mastered the move and can easily perform 2-3 sets of up to 16 reps with perfect form. To use this progression as a workout you can either do each exercise listed under the various fitness levels (e.g., all exercises under the Beginner column), doing them either one after the other circuit-style (for up to 16 reps) or one at a time for 1-3 sets of 10-16 reps. You can also pick and choose exercises from different columns (e.g., ball crunches, bicycle, plank, etc.). Use good form and see your doctor if you have any injuries or medical conditions.
Crunches Lie down with hands crossed over the chest or behind the head and feet on the floor, knees bent. Contract the abs and lift the head and
Ball Crunches Lie with the ball resting under the mid/lower back and place hands behind the head or
All Around Crunches Begin with body straight over the ball, weight extended behind you (not shown).
shoulders off the floor, bringing the rib cage towards the lower belly. Lower slowly back to start and repeat.
across the chest. Contract Contract the abs to lift and your abs to lift your the torso bring the weight over the off the ball, pulling the bottom head, crunching up and of your ribcage down toward twisting to the right, your hips. As you curl up, contracting the right side of keep the ball stable.. waist. Repeat for all reps and then switch sides.
Plank Begin on the forearms and knees and then lift up until Reverse Crunches you're on your elbows and Lie on your back with knees toes, back flat, in a straight bent to 90 degrees, shins parallel to the floor. Contract line from head to heels. Tilt your pelvis and contract your the abs and lower the feet towards the floor, keeping the abs to prevent your rear end from sticking up in the air. knees bent. Rotating the pelvis up and bring the knees Hold for as long as you can with perfect form. back towards the ribcage. Don't let your back arch.
Ball Squeeze & Lift Lie on right side with ball between shins, squeezing it to hold it in place. Keep hips stacked and abs tight to stabilize your body. Squeeze inner thighs and contract the waist and hip muscles to lift the ball in the air. Lower and repeat for 10-12 reps and then switch sides. Do 1 set and work up to 2-3 sets over time.
Bicycle Ball Crunches Lie on the floor with knees Plank with Ab-roll Lie with the ball resting under bent and hand behind the Start in plank (push up) the mid/lower back and place head. Lift the shoulder blades position with stomach in and hands behind the head or off the ground and straighten back flat (don't 'sag' in the across the chest. Contract left leg out while bringing the middle). Roll the ball towards your abs to lift your the torso left elbow towards the right you with your feet, tightening off the ball, pulling the bottom knee. Switch sides, bringing the abs into a crunch. For a of your ribcage down toward the right elbow towards the challenge, bring the ball into a your hips. As you curl up, keep left knee. Continue alternating pike, keeping legs straight. the ball stable.. sides in a 'pedaling' motion.
Oblique Crossover Crunches Lie on your back and cross the left foot over the right knee. Lift the shoulder blades off the floor and twist to the left, bringing the right shoulder towards the left knee. Lower back down and repeat for all reps before switching sides.
Medicine Ball Crunches Lie on your back with knees Side Plank with Oblique bent, medicine ball between Twist the knees. Squeeze inner Begin by lying on your side thighs to hold ball in place. and push up so that your body Put hands behind head (cradle is supported by right arm, feet your head gently) and lift stacked. Straighten left arm shoulders and hips off the and sweep the left arm down ground in a crunch. Lower and twist the body, turning it and repeat. towards the floor while keeping the rest of the body in place.
5. Yoga & Pilates for Abs
Try the following challenging exercises to target the muscles of your abs and back. These pilates and yoga based exercises are tough, so take your time and use good form!
Warrior Step forward about 4 feet, bending your right knee and lifting your arms parallel to the floor, shoulder blades relaxed, palms down. Turn right foot slightly to the right and the left foot out to 90 degrees, aligning both heels. Exhale and bend the right knee over the ankle, shin should be perpendicular to the floor, thigh parallel to the floor. Press the left leg straight, pressing outer heel firmly into the floor. Hold for 30 seconds to 1 minute and switch sides. Repeat 2-3 times 100's Lie face up and bring legs up, keeping them straight and together. Lift head and shoulders off the ground, pulling in the abs (don't let them bulge out) and bringing hands next to thighs. Lower the legs as much as you can while keeping your back on the floor and press hands up and down, counting with each press. Inhale for 5 counts, exhale for 5 counts and repeat until you hit 100, lowering your legs once again halfway through. Leg Circles Lie face up on the floor and raise right leg straight up over hip, toe pointed. Keeping abs tight and torso stabilized slowly circle leg clockwise 5 times, making big circles without moving your torso or hips (only the leg moves). Repeat 5 times counterclockwise and switch legs. Repeat 2-3 times on each leg. Tree Pose Stand with feet planted, arms at sides and body in alignment (ears over shoulders, shoulders over hips, hips over ankles). Inhale and bend the right leg, pulling the heel up until it rests on the inside of the left thigh. Get your balance and hold this position, then slowly push arms overhead, palms touching each other. Press the knee back without moving the hips. Hold this for 30 seconds then switch sides. Repeat 2-3 times Plank Lie face down on mat with elbows resting on floor next to chest. Push your body off the
floor in a pushup position with body resting on elbows or hands. Contract the abs and keep the body in a straight line from head to toes. Hold for 30-60 seconds and repeat as many times as you can. For beginners, do this move on your knees and gradually work your way up to balancing on your toes. Side Hip Flexion and Extension Lie on your right side with head supported on the right hand, legs straight and in front of you about 30 degrees. Lift the left leg, flex the foot and press it forward for 3 counts, then point your toe and swing leg back for 2 counts. Do not move any other part of your body (keep torso and hips tight and in place, moving only the leg). Repeat 5-8 times and switch legs.
The Workout • Do this workout 3-4 non-consecutive days a week • Perform each exercise for 2-3 sets of 5-8 repetitions or as indicated Perfect Form Pointers: • Keep body stabilized throughout the movement • Don't swing or use momentum • Make sure abs are pulled in tight throughout each movement
Always... •Warm up with 5-10 minutes of cardio •Do this workout in addition to an upper body, lower body workout and regular cardio exercise for best results. • Lowering your calories can help you lose more body fat
6. Dynamic Abs
Try these unique exercises that target the muscles of the torso in new and dynamic ways. This workout is perfect if you're tired of the same old crunches!
Wood-chops Anchor a resistance band near the floor and stand with left side facing it. Hold handle with both hands and, keeping your hips forward, sweep your arms up and across your body in a diagonal until arms are over the right side of your body. If you don't have a resistance band you can use a medicine ball, a light dumbbell or nothing at all. Don't swing--do the movement slowly.
For Beginners: Do 1 set of 8-12 repetitions of each exercise. Modify anything that isn't comfortable. For Intermediate: Do 2 sets of 8-12
reps. For Advanced: Do 3 or more sets of 8-12 repetitions. Ball Pikes Lie facedown with ball under ankles, body supported on hands (like Advanced a pushup). Beginners, bend the knees and roll the ball in towards the chest--try to keep your back straight and contract the abs. Roll out and repeat. Advanced, keep the legs straight, contract the abs and pull the ball in in a pike position until toes are on the ball. Always... •Warm up with 510 minutes of cardio •Do this workout in addition to weights and cardio exercise for best results.
Obliques Sit with legs bent, back straight, arms extended straight out in front of you. Contract the abs and sweep right arm down and behind you in a half-circle motion, leaning the torso back a few inches. Sit back up and repeat on other side. Lying Torso Twists Lie in the floor with knees pulled in over the chest. Place a ball between knees and stretch arms our to the sides like an airplane, palms facing up. Contract the abs and twist the hips to the right, bringing knees towards the floor (keep your shoulders flat on the floor). Don't touch the floor, but use the abs to bring knees back to start and go to the other side. Side-Lying Hip Lift Lie on your side balanced on forearm, feet and hips stacked on top of one another, other hand behind head. Holding the torso steady, slowly contract your abs and lift the hips off the floor (don't sink into shoulder). Lower and repeat.
7. How To Do a Perfect Abdominal Crunch
You may not know this, but many people do not use good form when doing an ab crunch. Not only can this cause back problems, it will also make your ab workout less effective. Learn to do it right! Difficulty: Easy Time Required: 3 to 5 minutes Here's How: Lie down on the floor on your back and bend your knees, placing your hands behind your head or across your chest. Pull your belly button towards your spine, and flatten your lower back against the floor. Slowly contract your abdominals, bringing your shoulder blades about one or two inches off the floor. Exhale as you come up and keep your neck straight, chin up. Hold at the top of the movement for a few seconds, breathing continuously. Slowly lower back down, but don't relax all the way. Repeat for 15 to 20 repetitions with perfect form for each rep. To add variation, bring your knees in at the same time you lift your upper body off the floor (full body crunch) To make it more difficult, balance on an exercise ball. Tips: To keep your neck in proper alignment, place your fist under your chin to keep your head from moving. Keep your back flat against the floor throughout the entire movement. If your back arches, prop your feet on a step or platform to make it easier. What You Need: A carpeted floor or mat. Abdominals
Exercise Ball (Optional)
8. Top 5 Ab Exercises
Are you happy with your abs? Most of us are stilly trying to figure out how to get six-pack abs. The right cardio exercise and weight training activities as well as a healthy diet can make a difference in your abs and help you get that washboard look. But, ab exercises are important too. Find out the most effective ab exercises for strengthening and firming your abdominals. 1) Bicycle The bicycle was ranked as the best ab exercise by the Amercian Council on Exercise because it uses every muscle in your abs to create a strong, lean torso. Make sure you pull your abs in (draw your navel towards your spine) and keep them contracted throughout the movement to protect your back. Don't hold your breath and go slowly so you can really feel it! Do 10-16 reps.
The Bicycle exercise is the best move to target the rectus abdominis (i.e., the 'six pack') and the obliques (the waist), according to a study done by the American Council on Exercise. To do this exercise correctly: 1. Lie face up on the floor and lace your fingers behind your head. 2. Bring the knees in towards the chest and lift the shoulder blades off the ground without pulling on the neck. 3. Straight the left leg out to about a 45-degree angle while simultaneously turning the upper body to the right, bringing the left elbow towards the right knee. 4. Switch sides, bringing the right elbow towards the left knee. 5. Continue alternating sides in a 'pedaling' motion for 12-16 reps. 2) The Plank The plank is another great exercise that challenges your Transverse Abdominis as well as the muscles of your back. You can do this move on your elbows or on your hands. Position yourself as though you're about to do a pushup and hold that pose, making sure your body is in one long, straight line from head to toes. Don't let your belly sag and keep your neck straight. Hold as long as you can! More: Core Strength 3) Crunches on the Ball Unless you live under a rock, you probably know that using an exercise ball provides for a very challenging ab workout. Instead of doing crunches on the floor, lie on an exercise ball. You'll challenge your abs in a whole new way while also working other muscles in your body like your legs and butt. Make sure you don't pull on your neck and roll forward a bit if the move is too difficult.
4) Reverse Crunch The reverse crunch is great for working your obliques and it helps you target the lower portion of your abs as well. There are many ways to do reverse crunches, but one of the best is to put an exercise ball under your knees. Make sure you contract your abs and use
them to lift your hips off the floor. It's a very small movement and you shouldn't swing or use momentum.
5) Ab Slide This exercise also challenges the abs in a different way, but it's an advanced exercise so pay close attention to your back. The movement involves rolling or sliding your hands out, using your abs and back to keep your body straight and then contracting them to pull back in. You can use anything from a Torso Track or Ab Wheel to a couple of pieces of cardboard for this movement.
B. BUTT, HIPPS AND TIGHS
1. Butts & Guts Cathe Friedrich's most recent video series includes a variety of workouts for both cardio and strength. Her Butts & Guts DVD offers a killer workout for advanced exercisers targeting the lower body and the abs. This workout focuses on muscular endurance rather than strength and involves light weights along with higher repetitions...but don't worry. Cathy changes up the tempo of each exercise so it's never boring or tedious. The entire workout is about 75 minutes long and includes bonus Stability Ball Abs and Bonus Lower Body as well as a variety of premixes offering shorter workouts. Standing Glute Work The Standing Glute Work is the first part of the workout and requires a stability ball, a high step (you can use a regular step here or a BOSU), light dumbbells, a barbell and a resistance band. The workout itself follows a circuit-like pattern where you move through a series of exercises once and then repeat them all with modifications. The exercises include:
• Walking Lunges. These aren't the usual walking lunges but include pulsing lunges, plie squats and plie squat jumps. Ouch! • Barbell Deadlifts with tempo changes. • One-legged squats (back foot is on a step). • Hammer punches - with these you step forward into a lunge while punching down with the opposite hand. • Barbell Squats - These involve regular squats, pulsing squats and killer half-way up squats.
Once you complete the moves, you go through them all again, but this time there are some variations: The Walking Lunge set is shorter, you elevate the toes during the Deadlifts, the Hammer Punch becomes a side lunge, there's a new Lunge/Squat Combo and then you move into Firewalkers where you wrap a resistance band around your ankles and walk sideways for about a zillion steps. Overall, this is a very tough workout and there are a lot of innovative moves like the Firewalkers and the Side Hammer Punches. I also liked the tempo changes throughout each set...definitely makes the moves less tedious. This section is about 30 minutes long, but it moves quickly and will definitely leave you with jello-legs. The Floor Work The Floor Work section, about 20 minutes long, is my least favorite part of the video, but only because I'm not a huge fan of floor work myself. This section starts off with outer thigh leg lifts on the ball followed by hamstring rolls. For each of these exercises, you do one set, but Cathe changes up the tempo so you'll really feel the burn, again, focusing on endurance. The next section involves ankle weights and isn't all that special. The exercises cover the standard moves - inner thigh lifts, glute squeezes and hydrants. Again, all the moves include pulses and other tempo variations to challenge muscular endurance. I have to say, this section was a little disappointing simply because there were no new exercises here and, about halfway through, I was ready to move on. Core and Bonus Workouts The Core section is about 14 minutes long and is interesting because it involves light weights as well as ankle weights. Some of the moves include:
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Slow roll-down crunch with a punch at the top of the movement A reverse crunch with a weight Rollbacks (lifting the legs in a reverse crunch and rolling down slowly) Side to side torso rotations Straight leg drops, side to side A variety of pulsing crunches Planks Back extensions
While I liked the variety of exercises and the addition of light weights, this section seemed long to me and a bit tedious. You'll definitely need endurance in the abs and hip flexors to get through the entire workout. What I did enjoy was the bonus abs section using a ball...in fact, this might be one of my favorite ab workouts because it includes a variety of new and fun moves like a plank where you rest the forearms on the ball and make circles (very interesting!), rollouts, side rolls on the ball (another unusual move), oblique lifts with a band and leg drops with the ball, just to name a few. There are also some standard moves here like back extensions, oblique crunches and ball exchanges.
The other bonus exercises include Sit & Stands where you sit and then hover over the step for 4 counts (always killer), two sets of 16 Leg Presses and Hip Extensions on the ball. These are great addons for when you want more floor work or to mix and match different exercises together.
Premixes and Conclusion I actually prefer some of the premixes over the main workout, especially the Standing Glutes & Abs Timesaver (about 45 minutes), which includes only standing leg work and some exercises from the bonus abs workout. There's also a 65-Minute Overall Legs workout that incorporates the bonus exercises as well as many of the standing exercises in the main workout, but the bulk of the workout is on the floor and includes two sets of many of the ankle-weight exercises. Another pre-mix is the Leg Blast workout which is about 45 minutes long and is another favorite mine. This one is all standing work and has you repeating many of the more difficult exercises (like the Lunge/Squat Combo and Leg Presses) for several sets. The last premix is Floor Work & Abs. Conclusion Overall, this is a great video for advanced exercisers looking for an endurance-oriented lower body and core workout. The only real drawbacks for me are that, first, the workout is very long although you can always choose a Premix workout. Second, the floor work was uninspiring and, frankly, a little boring. The highlights include: • Innovative standing and ab exercises • Great bonus workouts • Huge variety of premixed workouts give you lots of options • Excellent cueing • Great music When it comes to home workout videos, Cathe really can't be beat with the innovations she offers. No other instructor offers so many premixed workouts, bonus exercises and other extras to keep you interested for months, even years, to come. This video is no exception, offering you something different every time.
2. Squat Exercises
How many ways can you do squats? Turns out, more than you may think. Basic squats are excellent for the butt, hips, thighs and calves but they can get a little boring over time, especially if you need to add a little intensity. This photo gallery shows just how many variations are available from the easiest (chair or assisted squats) to the hardest (onelegged squats). When creating a lower body workout, try new kinds of squats on a regular basis to challenge both your mind and your body.
Chair Squat with Medicine Ball
Medicine Ball Squat
Squat with Side Step
Ball Squat with Medicine Ball
Squat with One Dumbbell
Squat with Dumbbells
Plie Squat on Toes
Plie Squat with Ball
Plie Squat with Barbell
One-Leg Ball Squat
One-Legged Front Squat on Step
One-Legged Bent Over Squat with Leg Lift
3. Exercise Hips, Butt and Thighs
The exercises below will challenge your hips, butt and thighs in a whole new way. Many of these moves involve using paper plates to add intensity to the moves. As always, check
with your doctor if you have any injuries or medical issues and avoid any exercise that causes pain or discomfort. You'll find instructions and tips at the end of the page. Side Lunge Slide Stand with feet hip-width apart, left foot resting on a paper plate. Bend the right leg while sliding the left foot to the side, torso upright and abs in. Slowly slide left foot back to starting position, repeating 8-12 times. Switch legs and repeat for 2-3 sets.
Lunge Slide Stand with feet hip-width apart, left foot resting on a paper plate. Bend the right leg while sliding the left foot back into a lunge position, keeping the right knee behind the toe, torso upright and abs in. Slowly slide left foot back to starting position and repeat 8-12 times. Switch legs and repeat on each leg for 2-3 sets. Front One-Legged Squat Stand on a step or small platform. Lift left leg out in front of step and bend the right leg, bringing the toe of the left foot to the floor. Touch the floor lightly and keep the knee of the bent leg in line with toes. Straighten the right leg and repeat 8-12 times. Switch legs and repeat for 2-3 sets. Chair Squat Stand in front of a chair with feet hip-width apart, abs in and torso straight. Slowly bend your knees and lower and until you're almost touching your butt to the chair. Hold for 2-3 seconds, knees behind the toes, and straighten. Repeat for 12-16 reps, 2-3 sets. Heel Drops with Leg Extension Stand on step or platform with left leg on the step, right leg hanging off the side. Bend the left leg and lower the right foot towards the floor (a few inches). Straighten the left leg and bring the right leg out to the side, foot flexed, in a leg extension. Repeat 8-12 times, switch legs for 2-3 sets. Hip Extension On a flat or inclined step or platform, lie facedown with hips on the edge of the step, legs straight out behind you with toes resting lightly on the floor. Squeeze the glutes and hamstrings and straighten the legs until they are level with the hips. Hold for 2-3 seconds, and lower letting toes lightly touch the floor. Repeat for 2-3 sets
of 8-12 repetitions. Exercise tips and instructions: - For Beginners: Do one set of 8-12 repetitions of each exercise with light weight or no weight 2-3 times a week, with at least one day of rest between workouts - For Intermediates: Do 1-2 sets of 8-12 repetitions of each exercise using light-medium weights, 2-3 times a week with at least one day of rest between workouts. - For Advanced: Do 2-3 sets of 8-12 repetitions of each exercise, using enough weight that you can ONLY complete the desired number of setps, 2-3 times a week with at least one day of rest between workouts.
Make sure you... • Warm up with 5-10 minutes of cardio and stretching • Cool down with a long stretch • Drink plenty of water • Do this workout in addition to an upper body workout and regular cardio exercise for best results.
4. Top 10 Butt Exercises
Are you happy with your butt? Most of us aren't. They're too small, too big, too saggy, too flabby...this list goes on. The right cardio exercise and weight training activities (like squats and deadlifts) can make a difference in your backside and help you get those buns of steel. Find out the best cardio and strength training exercises for strengthening and firming up your rear. 1) Squats (čučnjevi, s utezima, uza zid…) Squats are one of the best exercises you can do for your hips, butt and thighs. There are many different types of squats, including the Chair Squat pictured here. Stand with feet hipwidth apart and squat, keeping back straight, abs in and knees behind your toes. Let your butt lightly touch chair and squeeze butt to stand up. Repeat for 2-3 sets of 8-12 reps and add weights for more intensity. This gallery of squat images shows a wide variety of squats you can add to your current routine. ↑ 2) Lunges Lunges are a challenging exercise because they work so many muscles at the same time. On the front leg, you'll work the glutes and hamstrings and, on the back leg, you'll work the quads and calves. What's nice about lunges is that there are a variety to choose from such as: • Side to Side Lunges • Reverse lunges • Front lunges • Walking lunges • Wheel lunges (front, side, reverse)
You can also elevate the back foot on a step or platform to really challenge both legs. This is a great move for the glutes and thighs, but please avoid this move if it aggravates any knees problems. Lunges
Lunges came out on top in targeting the gluteus medius and, to a lesser extent, the gluteus maximus and the hamstrings. There are so many versions of lunges, you're certain to find one you can tolerate, if not fall in love with. This drop-knee version is the most basic lunge and, surprisingly, one of the harder versions. Here's how to do it: • Stand in a split stance, with feet about 3 feet apart. You want both knees to be at about 90-degree angles at the bottom of the movement, so adjust accordingly. • Hold weights in each hand (or place a barbell behind the neck) for added intensity. • Bend the knees and lower the back knee towards the floor, keeping the front heel down and the knee directly over the center of the foot. • Keep the torso straight and abs in as you push through the front heel and back to starting position. • Don't lock the knees at the top of the movement. Perform 1-3 sets of 10-16 reps according to your fitness level and goals. 3) Step Ups For step ups, you simply place one foot on a step or platform and push through the heel onto the step. This is an excellent exercise for the glutes, providing you use a step that's high enough...just make sure your knee is bent to 90 degrees or less to keep it safe. The other key to making this move work is to concentrate all your weight on the stepping leg. In other words, lower down gently, barely touching the toes of the other leg to the ground. You'll really feel this when you take it slow and concentrate on the working leg. Step Ups
Step Ups are one of those exercises that seem like a good idea, but you're never exactly sure if you're doing anything. Worry no more because Step Ups really do work the glutes and the hamstrings. The trick is to make sure you're stepping up onto a platform that's high enough to really activate those muscle fibers, one that's about 15 inches high. Holding dumbbells can add some nice intensity to the movement. How to do it: • Stand behind a 15-inch platform or step, weights in hand. • Place the right foot on the step, transfer the weight to the heel and push into the heel to come onto the step. • Concentrate on only using the right leg, keeping the left leg active only for balance. • Slowly step back down and repeat all reps on the right leg before switching to the left. • Perform 1-3 sets of 10-16 reps according to your fitness level and goals. 4) Hip Extensions While I'm fond of more compound moves (like the squats, lunges and step ups listed above) since they work more muscle groups, the hip extension is an exercise that targets the largest muscle in the body...the gluteus maximus. For this move, you can hold a dumbbell behind the knee or use ankle weights for added intensity. Another interesting variation is to lie with your hips and torso supported by a ball, hands on the floor, and bend the knees. Then squeeze the glutes to send the feet straight up to the ceiling. Quadruped Hip Extensions
Surprisingly, quadruped hip extensions (or a bent-leg raise while on all-fours) came out on top for targeting the gluteus maximus. This exercise really allows you to contract the muscles of the glutes. How to do it: 1. On hands and knees, keep the abs tight as you lift one leg up, knee at a 90-degree angle throughout the movement. 2. Keep lifting the leg until the bottom of the foot faces the ceiling and the hip, thigh and knee are all in alignment and parallel to the floor. 3. Don't arch the back and keep the neck straight. 4. Lower back down and repeat for all reps before switching sides. 5. Add ankle weights for more intensity or, as in this example, hold a light dumbbell behind the knee. 6. Perform 1-3 sets of 10-16 reps according to your fitness level and goals
5. One-Legged Deadlifts Deadlifts are great for your hamstrings, butt and lower back, but form is critical and you should skip this exercise if you have any back problems. To do this move, take the left leg back just a bit, lightly resting on the toe. With the weights in front of the thighs, tip from the hips and lower the weights as low as your flexibility allows. Keep your back flat or with a natural arch and make sure you keep the abs contracted to protect the back. Squeeze the glutes of the working leg to raise back up. Do 2-3 sets of 8-12 reps. 6) Hiking Now the exercises listed above aren't the only strength moves for the glutes, but we often forget that there are cardio activities that will also engage the backside. Hiking is one of those activities and it also burns tons of calories because you're typically going up steep mountains and maybe even getting into thin air, which requires lots of energy. Also, walking up an incline automatically gets your glutes more involved and, if you're wearing a backpack, you're really getting a workout. Plus, you get to see nature at its best. A 140-lb person burns about 390 calories in about an hour! 7) Biking Riding a bike is great for your heart and it also targets almost every muscle in your hips, thighs and butt. On a stationary bike, alternate 3 minutes at 70-80 RPM with 2 minutes at 100-110 RPM for a calorie-blasting 30 minute workout. You can also try Spinning at the gym or riding outside. Gear up to really work your glutes! A 140-lb person burns 335 calories in 45 minutes. 8) Running Running, like walking is accessible, easy to learn, reduces stress, helps in weight loss, and it makes you feel good. Plus, it really works your butt, especially when you add a few hills to
your regular running route. Sprints are another option for folks wanting to both burn more calories and tighten up the old tush. A 140-lb person burns 475 calories during a 45 minute jog. 9) Kickboxing Kickboxing was a hot item back in the day, but it's still a great workout. Controlled kicks work your hips, thighs and butt while complex combinations that include punches will target your abs to make them stronger. A 140-lb woman will burn up to 500 calories with 45 minutes of kickboxing. 10) Walking Walking is easy: you can do it anywhere, anytime with no special equipment. There's no learning curve and it's something you can incorporate all day long. If you walk up hills, you can really target your glutes and, if you pick up the intensity, you'll burn some of that extra flab off your buns! A 140-lb person burns about 300 calories an hour during a brisk walk.
5. Your Butt Workout
Assisted Squat Wrap a towel around a doorknob (or other stable object), feet hipwidth apart, abs in. Holding onto ends of the towel for stabilization, bend knees and lower body into a squat position as low as you can go, but stopping when knees are at 90 degrees. Push through the heels and squeeze the butt to lift back to starting position (don't lock knees). Repeat for 2-3 sets of 812 reps. Single Leg Squat/Step Up Stand in front of 12-14" platform with right foot resting on it. Bend left leg and sit back into a quartersquat, keeping knee over an behind toe. Push back to start and push through the right heel to lift up over the step. At the same time, squeeze glutes and lift left leg up behind you a few inches. Keep abs are in tight to support your spine. Repeat on each leg for 12-16 reps, 2-3 sets and hold dumbbells for added resistance. One Legged Deadlift Stand on left leg and bend right leg to 90 degree angle. Holding dumbbells in front of thighs, tip from the hips and lower torso towards the floor, weights close to legs, and stopping at mid-shin. For Beginners: Do 1 set of 8-12 repetitions of each exercise with no weight or light weight. For Intermediate: Do 2 sets of 8-12 reps using enough weight to complete the desired number of reps. For Advanced: Do 3 or more sets of 812 repetitions, using enough weight to complete the desired number of reps. To build large muscles, make sure you: •Eat more calories than you burn •Do 6-8 reps of each exercise using heavy weights, rest at least 1 min. between sets •Use a spotter for
Squeeze the butt and hamstrings to raise back up to mid-thigh. Make sure back is flat throughout the movement and abs are in. This is NOT a squat, so don't bend knees. Alternate on each leg for 2-3 sets of 8-12 reps. Ham Raises On The Step Lie in front of step and scoot forward until your butt almost touches edge of step. Place right foot on the step, knee bent, and raise left leg straight up. Keeping abs tight, squeeze butt and hamstring to lift butt off the floor, pushing left leg straight up towards the ceiling. Lower back until butt barely touches the floor. Alternate on each leg for 23 sets of 16 reps. Bent Leg Outer Thigh Lift Holding on to a chair for stabilization, bend right knee to 90 degrees. Keeping body upright, abs in and hips forward, lift bent leg straight up until it's parallel to the floor. Slowly lower back to start position and repeat on each leg for 2-3 sets of 12-16 reps. For added resistance, use 1-5 lb ankle weights or a resistance band. Lunge On The Ball Prop right shin on a ball (or step) behind you and bent front knee, slowly lowering into a lunge. Squeeze through the heels to raise back up, making sure knee is behind toe and torso is straight, abs in. Adjust the ball as needed to keep your knee behind your toe. Add dumbbells for more intensity. Repeat on each leg for 2-3 sets of 8-12 repetitions. safety •Rest for 3 or more days between workouts •Split your workouts to incorporate more exercises Always... •Warm up with 510 minutes of cardio and stretching •Cool down with a long stretch •Drink plenty of water •Do this workout in addition to a lower body workout and
1. Basic Lower Body Exercises This workout offers some tried and true lower body moves for the hips, butt and thighs.
• • • • • •
Begin with 5-10 minutes of cardio to warm up Beginners do 1 or 2 sets of 12-16 reps of each exercise, using no weights or light weights Inter/Advanced: do 3 or more sets of 8-12 reps, using enough weight that you can only complete the desired number of reps Rest at least one day between workouts Perform each rep slowly (i.e., count to three during each part of the motion) After your workout, be sure to stretch!
Barbell Deadlift Stand with feet hip distance apart. With shoulders back and back slightly arches, tip from the hips to lower the weight towards the floor (according to your flexibility) and slowly raise back up, squeezing glutes, weight in the heels. Squat with Barbell Stand with feet wider than shoulders with barbell resting on meaty part of shoulders. Bend knees and, keeping chest up, lower into a squat. Keep abs in and the knees behind the toes. Push through the heels to raise back up and repeat. Plie Squat With barbell or dumbbells, stand with feet wide, toes out. With knees in line with toes, lower into a squat. Knees should be behind toes. Push through the heels and lift back up. Lunge Using barbell or dumbbells (or no weight) stand with feet apart, toes forward. Slowly lower into lunge position, keeping body erect and abs in, knees at 90 degree angles. Push through the front heel, squeeze butt and slowly lift up to starting position (without locking knees). Repeat for one set and switch legs. Straight Leg Glute Extensions Using ankle weight (or no weight), balance on hands and knees, abs in and back flat. Straighten one leg and slowly lift up, squeezing the glute. Lower back down allowing toes to barely touch the floor. Repeat and then switch legs. Straight Hip Extensions Using ankle weight (or no weight) lie on floor, abs in. Slowly lift leg up until perpendicular to the floor, lower back to starting position without relaxing. Hamstring Rolls Using exercise ball, place heels or calves on ball and slowly lift butt up, tightening the abs. Roll ball towards butt, squeezing the
hamstrings and keeping abs tight, back flat. Hip Adduction Lie on one side, one foot bent in front. Tighten abs and slowly lift other leg as high as you can, keeping leg straight, foot slightly flexed. Use ankle weights for added resistance. Hip Abduction Lie on one side, hips stacked, knees slightly bent. Lift top leg, squeezing the glutes, then lower back down without completely relaxing. Use ankle weights for added resistance.
D. UPPER BODY
1. Back Exercises - Lats and Mid-Back These exercises show basic moves targeting the muscles of the back, specifically the lats and the mid-back using dumbbells, a barbell, resistance bands and a ball. The lat muscles, which are the large muscles on the sides of the back, are often worked with rowing types of motions such as dumbbell rows, seated rowing machines, lat pulldowns, etc. Instructions for how to work these into your workouts are listed below and you can also find more back exercises at Pullovers, Pulldowns and Upper Back Moves and Lower Back Exercises. Dumbbell Rows Seated Rows w/ Resistance Band
One-Armed Row w/ Twist
One-Armed Row on Ball
Barbell High Row
Lat Pulldowns w/Resistance Band
Tips and Instructions: For all exercisers, use enough weight that you can ONLY complete the desired number of sets. Make sure you warm up with light cardio before lifting and stretch between sets.
• • •
Beginners: Choose 1-2 exercises, 1-2 sets of 12-16 reps Muscle Building: 3-5 exercises, 3 or more sets of 6-8 reps Muscle Toning: 2-3 exercises, 2-3 sets of 10-16 reps
2. Exercises for Your Biceps
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For all exercisers, use enough weight that you can ONLY complete the desired number of reps--the last one should be difficult, but not impossible. Warm up with light cardio before lifting and stretch between sets. Give biceps at least one day of rest before you work them again. If you lift heavy, you may need 2 or more days to recover. Beginners: Choose 1 - 2 exercises, 1 set of 14 - 16 reps Intermediate-Advanced/Muscle Building: 3 - 5 exercises, 3 or more sets of 6 - 8 reps Intermediate-Advanced/Muscle Endurance: 2 - 3 exercises, 2-3 sets of 10 - 16 reps Description Hold weights in hands, palms facing out, elbow slightly bent. Keeping abs tight, bend the elbows and bring the weights towards the shoulders (don't touch the shoulders), keeping elbows from moving back and forth. Slowly lower back down, but don't straighten the arm entirely--keep tension on the muscle throughout the movement. If you find you're swinging the weights to get them up, lower the weight and slow down. Keep your elbows next to your torso but don't prop them on your waist to help you lift the weights. That's called cheating. Example
Exercise Bicep Curls Variations: Barbell Dumbbell Preacher curl Bicep Curl Machine Incline curl Cable/Resistance Band Bicep Curls
Kneel on floor or sit on a bench and grasp a dumbbell. Place the back of the upper arm on the inner thigh and lean into the leg to raise the elbow a bit. Raise dumbbell to front of shoulder and then lower until arm is almost fully extended. This variation puts your arm at a difficult angle, so you may find you'll need less weight than in a traditional curl.
Hold chosen resistance, palms facing each other, elbows slightly bent. Keeping abs tight to steady the torso, bend the elbows and bring the weights towards the shoulders (don't touch the shoulders), taking care to keep the elbows from moving back and forth. Slowly lower back down, but don't straighten the arm entirely-keep tension on the muscle throughout the movement. Changing your hand position adds difficulty as you target both the biceps and the forearms.
Vary Your Workouts Change your strength training routine by varying the exercises: 1. Choose an exercise (i.e., bicep curls) 2. Choose type of resistance (i.e., resistance band) 3. Choose position (i.e., standing on one leg) 4. Choose movement (i.e., both arms at a time or alternating arms) After 4-6 weeks, change at least one component by choosing a different type of resistance, exercise, position and/or movement.
3. Exercises for Your Chest The following exercises show examples of moves targeting the chest muscles. The most common chest exercises include chest or bench presses, pushups and flies and you'll find
examples of each below. Click on the pictures and hyperlinks to view detailed instructions or to see a larger picture. To work these exercises into a routine:
• • •
Beginners: Choose 1-2 exercises, 1-2 sets of 12-16 reps Inter/Adv: Choose an exercise from each column for 2-3 sets of 6-12 reps, resting between sets Use enough weight that you can ONLY complete the desired number of reps
Bench Press/Chest Press Pushups Chest Flies The bench press works the Pushups work almost every The fly also works the major major muscles of the chest, muscle in the body with an muscles of the chest with a shoulders and triceps. To emphasis on the chest and focus on the outer muscles. perform a basic bench press, arms. For a basic pushup, To perform a fly, lie on a lie on a bench and hold place hands shoulder-width bench with weights overhead, directly over chest, elbows apart, on knees or toes. Bend palms face in. Lower weights bent at 90 degree angles. arms and lower down as far as out to sides, elbows slightly Press arms straight up without you can. Straighten arms and bent. Stop at shoulder level, locking, then lower back to push up without locking then bring weights back up starting position. elbows. over chest. Variations: Variations: Variations: Barbell Bench Press Pushups on the Knees Dumbbell Chest Fly
Dumbbell Chest Press
Pushups on the Toes
Chest Fly on the Ball
Incline Chest Press
Pushups on the Ball
Incline Chest Fly
Chest Press w/ Resistance Band
Pushups with Resistance
One-Armed Fly with Band
4. Exercises for Your Triceps The following exercises show examples of moves for your triceps. For all exercisers, use enough weight that you can ONLY complete the desired number of reps.
Beginners: Choose 1 - 2 exercises, 1 set of 14 - 16 reps
Intermediate-Advanced/Muscle Building: 3 - 5 exercises, 3 or more sets of 6 - 8 reps Intermediate-Advanced/Muscle Endurance: 2 - 3 exercises, 2-3 sets of 10 - 16 reps Exercise Example
Kickbacks Hold weights in hands and bend over until torso is parallel to the floor. Bend elbows and pull them even with back.Straighten arms behind you, squeezing the triceps and slowly lower back down. Variations: One arm at a time, With cables or bands Tricep Extension Sit or stand and hold a dumbbell with both hands, elbows bent behind the head to 90 degrees. Straighten the arms, squeezing the triceps. Variations: One arm at a time Holding plate or medicine ball Standing Tricep Extension Machine Tricep Press (a.k.a. Skull Crushers) Lie on a bench and hold a light barbell with hands shoulder-width apart, palms out. Bend elbows to 90 degrees, lowering the weight towards the head. Squeeze the triceps to push back to start. Variations: Dumbbells Resistance Bands/cables Tricep Dip Sit on a bench with hands right next to hips. Bring hips in front of bench and bend elbows to no lower than 90 degrees. Push back up without locking elbows. If you have wrist or shoulder problems, skip this move. Close-Grip Bench Press Lie on a bench and hold a barbell with a narrow grip, palms facing out. Lower the weight down towards the ribcage, bringing the elbows below the body. Squeeze the triceps to push the weight back up.
5. Shoulder Exercises The following exercises show examples of moves targeting the shoulders - the front, middle and rear deltoids as well as the rotator cuff muscles. For all exercisers, use enough weight that you can ONLY complete the desired number of sets. Make sure you warm up with light cardio before lifting and stretch between sets. Do your chest exercises at the beginning of your routine while your chest and arm muscles are fresh.
• • •
Beginners: Choose 1-2 exercises, 1 set of 14-16 reps Muscle Building: 2 - 4 exercises, 3 or more sets of 6-8 reps Muscle Toning: 2 - 3 exercises, 2-3 sets of 10-16 reps Front, Side and Rear Rotations and Upright Rows Raises Shoulder rotations work the Front, side and rear raises rotator cuff and usually require target each part of of the smaller range of motion and shoulders as well as the upper light weight to avoid injury. back. When doing shoulder Upright rows work the middle raises, only lift the weight up deltoid as well as the upper to shoulder level. When doing back and bicep muscles. If you rear flies, lead with the have shoulder problems, you elbows and keep them slightly may want to avoid these bent, lifting only to shoulder exercises. level. Front Raise Lateral Raise External Rotation
Overhead Presses Overhead presses work the major muscles of the shoulder, with a focus on the middle deltoid and tricep. To do a basic overhead press, stand (or sit) holding weights with elbows bent and hands at eye level. Push weight over head without arching the back and lower back to start. Overhead Press/Barbell
Overhead Press/One Leg
Reverse Flies with Band
6. Shoulders, Arms and Chest The following exercises target the muscles of your shoulders and arms. Many are compound movements that work more than one muscle at a time, which means you get more bang for your buck. All you need are some dumbbells, a chair and some paper plates. If you're ready to get started, scroll down for your upper body workout.
Pushup Plus Lie facedown on the floor with hands next to shoulders, paper plates under each hand. On your knees or toes, straighten elbows and push torso up, abs tight, body in a straight line (do not lock elbows). At the top of the movement, squeeze the chest and slide both hands in (on the paper plates) until they're next to each other and directly under your chest. Slide them back out, and lower into pushup (elbows at 90 degrees). Repeat for 2-3 sets of 812 reps. Rear Delt Row with Bands In split stance, loop resistance band around a STURDY object. Facing the object, hold handles in each hand, arms straight out in front of you with palms facing each other. Keeping elbows slightly bent, squeeze shoulder blades and pull arms back to shoulder level (in a 'cross' position). Keep abs are in tight to support your spine. Repeat for 12-16 reps, 2-3 sets. Front - Side Raises Stand with feet hip-width apart, abs in and torso upright with medium weights resting in front of thighs (palms face the thighs). Begin by lifting the arms up to shoulder level (elbows slightly bent) and lower (front raise). Immediately lift arms straight out to the sides to shoulder level (side raise). Alternate front and side raises for 2-3 sets of 8-12 reps. Overhead Press with Twist Stand or sit, holding weights with palms facing in directly in front of the shoulders, elbows bent (as in a bicep curl). Straighten elbows and lift weights overhead, twisting the hands until palms face out. Lower arms, twisting palms to face in again. Repeat for 12-16 reps, 2-3 sets.
For Beginners: Do 1 set of 8-12 repetitions of each exercise with light weight. For Intermediates: Do 2 sets of 8-12 reps using enough weight so that you can ONLY complete the desired number of reps. For Advanced: Do 3 or more sets of 8-12 repetitions, using enough weight so that you can ONLY complete the desired number of reps. If you're trying to build large muscles, make sure you: •Eat more calories than you burn •Do 6-8 reps of each exercise using heavy weights, rest at least 1 min. between sets •Use a spotter for safety •Rest for 3 or more days between workouts •Split your workouts to incorporate more exercises Always... •Warm up with 5-10 minutes of cardio and stretching •Cool down with a long stretch •Drink plenty of water •Do this workout in addition to a lower
Bicep Curl with Anterior Raise Stand with feet planted, torso straight and abs in and hold weights in front of thighs, palms facing out. Bend elbow, bringing weights towards the shoulders in a curl. Then straighten the arms until elbows are at 90 degrees, arms parallel. Straighten arms and slowly arms back to starting position. Repeat 8-12 times, switch legs for 2-3 sets. Tricep Dips Begin sitting on a step or chair with hands next to thighs. Balance on your arms, moving backside in front of the step with legs straight (harder) or bent (easier). Bend the elbows and lower body a few inches, keeping the shoulders down and the elbows parallel to one another and at 90 degrees. Push back up to starting position. Repeat for 2-3 sets of 8-12 repetitions. body workout and regular cardio exercise for best results.
7. Uppper Body Workout
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Warm up with light cardio or a warm up set of each exercise Perform each exercise in the superset or tri-set one right after the other with no rest between exercises End with a light cool down and stretch Beginners: Perform one set of each exercise Intermediate/Advanced Exercisers: Complete all exercises in each super or triset, rest, then repeat 2 or 3 more times. Check with your doctor before you begin any exercise routine
Tri-Set 1: Pushups, Chest Press and Chest Flies Pushup (on knees or toes) Pushups: Get in pushup position (on knees or toes) and keep the abs in as you perform 1216 pushups using good form. Chest Press: Head over to the bench and grab your barbell or dumbbells. Begin with the weight straight up over chest. Bend the elbows and lower arms no lower than
Chest Press (2 counts up, 2 counts down)
shoulders, wrists straight. Lift back to start and repeat for 16 reps, 2 counts up and 2 counts down. Chest Flies: Put your weights down and pick up a lighter weight for flies. Begin with arms straight up over chest, palms facing each other but not touching. Slowly lower arms down to the sides, no lower than shoulder lever, keeping the elbows slightly bent. Contract the chest to pull arms back to start and repeat for 16 reps, 2 counts down, 2 counts up Chest Fly (2 counts up, 2 counts down)
Tri-Set 2: Bilateral Dumbbell Row, Pullovers, Reverse Flies DB Row (lats): Stand with feet hip-width apart and bend at the waist until torso is parallel to the floor (or higher, if it hurts your back). Keep abs contracted to protect the back and bend arms, pulling elbow up to the rib cage while contracting the lat muscles. Lower and repeat. Do this one arm at a time if you find this too hard on your back. DB Pullover (lats and chest): Now choose one heavier dumbbell and lie faceup on a step or bench, holding the dumbbell straight up overhead. Keeping your back against the bench and using control, slowly lower the weight behind your head, arms slightly bent, until you're level with the bench. Squeeze your back to pull the weight back up to start Bent over Reverse Flies (upper back): Now choose lighter dumbbells (3 or 5lbs for beginners) and bend over from the waist until back is flat and parallel to the floor, holding the weights straight down, palms face each other. Keeping elbows slightly bent, squeeze the shoulder blades together & raise the elbows up towards the ceiling, stopping at shoulder level. Lower back down and repeat.
Tri-Set 3: Overhead Press, Upright Row, Lateral Raise Overhead Press: Stand with feet hip-width apart, knees slightly bent, abs in, weights in hand. Begin by bringing the weights up next
Overhead Press to ears, palms face out. Contract the shoulders to lift the weights straight up and slightly forward (you should see them out of the corner of your eye). Lower back down to shoulder level and repeat. Upright Row: Put the weights down (bend your knees!) and pick up a barbell (or more dumbbells if you don't have a barbell). Hold the bar with palms facing in, hand a few inches apart. Bend the elbows and bring the weight up towards your chin, elbows above the bar. Lower back down and repeat. Lateral Raise: Stand or sit, holding weights with arms bent, elbows at 90 degree angles, palms facing each other. Keeping elbows bent, contract shoulders to lift arms straight out to the sides to shoulder level. Lower and repeat. (You can also do this with straight arms, which is more difficult) SuperSet: Barbell Bicep Curls, Hammer Curls Barbell Bicep Curls: Hold weights in hands, palms facing out, elbow slightly bent. Keeping abs tight, bend the elbows and bring the weights towards the shoulders (don't touch the shoulders), keeping elbows from moving back and forth. Slowly lower back down, but don't straighten the arm entirely-keep tension on the muscle throughout the movement. If you find you're swinging the weights to get them up, lower the weight and slow down. Hammer Curls: Stand with feet planted, torso straight and abs in and hold weights at sides, palms facing thighs. Bend elbow, bringing weights towards the shoulders in a curl and lower back down. Keep your elbows next to your torso but don't prop them on your waist to help you lift the weights. That's called cheating. SuperSet: Tricep dips, kickbacks Dips: Find a chair or solid object and sit on it with hands next to hips. Move hips in front of chair and, keeping butt close to the chair, bend the elbows and lower a few inches. Don't sink into the shoulder or lower past 90 degrees. Do a whole bunch and get ready for your last exercise. Upright Row
Bent Arm Lateral Raise
Tricep Kickbacks: Stand with fit hip-width apart and tip forward from the hips, back flat and abs in until your torso is parallel to the floor (or higher if it hurts your back or your hamstrings are tight). Begin with elbows bent and pulled up to ribcage. Tighten the triceps and straighten the elbow, bringing weights up behind you. Lower back down and repeat.
8. Upper Body Mixed Resistance Workout This workout involves using resistance tubes (light and medium) along with dumbbells (suggested range from 3 - 15 lbs). By using them together, you can add intensity to traditional exercises, which is especially helpful if you'd like to increase intensity without going up in weight. This workout is primarily for intermediate/advanced exercisers who are familiar with both dumbbell and tubing exercises. Start with light weights and tubing the first few workouts and increase resistance as you perfect each move. These are just suggested exercises...modify as needed and stay within your fitness level and comfortable range of motion.
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Warm up for 5-10 minutes with light cardio or lighter-weight versions of the exercises below Intermediate Exercisers: Perform 2-3 sets of 12-16 reps. Advanced: Perform 3 or more sets of 10-12 reps. Rest at least 48 hours between sessions for recovery. Avoid this workout if you have any upper body injuries, especially shoulder problems See your doctor before starting any exercise program if you have specific injuries, illnesses or conditions Chest Press w/ Dumbbells and Medium Tube
Push Ups w/ Medium Tube
One-Arm Fly w/ Dumbbell and Light Tube
Bent-over Row with Dumbbells and Medium Tube
Pullovers w/ Dumbbells and Light Tube
Reverse Fly w/ Dumbbells & Light Tube
Dumbbell Military Press w/ Light Tube
Front Raises w/ Dumbbells and Light Tube
Hammer Curl w/ Dumbbells and Med. Tube
Concentration Curl w/ Light Tube
Kickbacks w/ Dumbbells and Light Tube
9. Upper Body Progression This Upper Body Progression Workout shows some examples of how to progress from beginner exercises to more advanced versions. You'll know you're ready to move on to the next progression once you've mastered the move and can easily perform 2-3 sets of up to 16 reps with perfect form. To use this progression as a workout you can either do each
exercise listed under the various fitness levels (e.g., all exercises under the Beginner column), one after the other (for up to 16 reps) or one at a time for 1-3 sets of 10-16 reps. You can also pick and choose exercises from different columns (e.g., Pushups on knees, chest press on ball, back extension, etc.). See your doctor if you have any injuries or medical conditions. Beginner Pushups on Knees Intermediate Pushups on toes Advanced Pushups on ball
The beginner version is with the knees down to give you some support.
By elevating your feet on an By taking the knees off the unstable surface, you're floor, you now have your making this an advanced entire body involved with the exercise. move. You need a strong core to do this move without sagging. Chest Press on Ball One-arm Chest Press on Ball
Chest Press On Floor/Step
Chest press on the floor or step gives you some stable support while you work your chest.
By moving to a ball, you add instability to the move so you work the legs and core at the same time you work the chest. Chest Fly on Ball
The ball adds plenty of intensity, but try one arm at a time and you'll really feel your entire body work on this exercise. Another progression is the Incline Chest Press. One-Arm Chest Fly on Ball
Chest Fly on Step or Floor
The fly is a classic chest Doing the chest fly on the ball exercise targeting the outer portion of the chest. You want means you have to use your legs and core to keep you to keep the elbows slightly balanced as you lower the bent as you lower down to weights. torso level. Back Extension Back Extension, Upper & Lower
Using one arm at a time is a challenge, especially if you're already on an unstable surface, such as an exercise ball. Another option: Incline Fly. Back Extension On Ball
The basic back extension is a You can add intensity by lifting An exercise ball adds simple, easy way to work the both the chest and legs off the instability and, therefore, floor at the same time. intensity to the traditional back lower back. extenstion. Lat Pulldown w/ Band Dumbbell row One-Armed Row on One Leg
Standing on one leg makes this move very challenging. Keep
This is a great exercise for beginners that targets the lat muscles, the large muscles on either side of the back. Seated Overhead Press
The row also targets the lats the hips square to the floor and is a bit harder because throughout the move. you're bent at the waist, which challenges the abs and back. Overhead Press On One Leg Shoulder Pushup
This move is great for the shoulders and can be done seated or standing. Tricep Extension - Band
The shoulder pushup is a very advanced way to work the Make the exercise more shoulders. Be careful with this difficult by standing on one leg move and only do it when for a balance challenge. you're ready. Easier Option: One-Arm Press. Chair Dips Ball Dips
Dips are a version of pushups that target the triceps. You want to keep the hips close to There are different types of the chair/step as you bend the extensions and this version is elbows and only lower to great for beginners. Keep one about 90 degrees. You can hand in place as you add intensity by taking the straighten the other arm, feet further out. If you have squeezing the back of the shoulder or wrist problems, arms. you may want to skip this exercise. Bicep Curls Bicep Curls on One Leg
By using a ball instead of a chair or step, you add difficulty to this exercise. This is a tough exercise and your balance will be compromised so you may want to prop the ball against the wall the first time trying this move.
You can't get more classic By standing on one leg, your than a standard bicep balance is challenged right curl. You want to make sure along with your biceps. you don't swing the weights and that you keep a slight bend in the elbows rather than locking the joints. You can use dumbbells, a barbell, resistance bands, cables, etc.
One way to add difficulty to bicep curls is by changing the angle of the move as in the preacher curl. You should keep this exercise slow and controlled to avoid injury.
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