Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Workout Idea

Hello readers!

Tomorrow's my weigh-in day - we'll see what happens! But I just wanted to take a minute to let you know about a really cool workout my trainer had me do last week. It's really simple and you don't need anybody but yourself to do it! Although it could be a fun thing to do with a friend.

What you'll need: a deck of cards, a bosu ball (those blue half circle squishy things), 2 dumbbell weights, and a bench or flat surface about 2 feet off the ground. The weight of the dumbbells should depend on how strong your arms are. Girls - 5 or 8 pounds unless you're very fit. Boys - at least 10 or 15 pounds.

Okay - shuffle the cards or lay them out mixed up. Draw cards one at a time. Based on what suit you draw, you do a certain exercise. Based on what number you draw, that's how many of that exercise you do! It's simple. :) Face cards are 10. We will get to Aces and Jokers later.

Hearts - Stand on the squishy side of the bosu holding one dumbbell in each hand. Raise your arms - keeping your elbows straight - at a slight angle to your body. Not directly in front of you or directly at your sides, but somewhere in between. You should feel this in the top of your shoulders. (This is called a scaption raise.) Then push your arms back (elbows still straight), squeezing your shoulder blades together, like you were flinging some double doors open. Then slowly control your arms as you bring them back to your sides. Repeat based on the number you draw.

Diamonds - Place your arms on the flat surface, and lean your body at an angle. Do a push up at this angle. (Boys - most of you can do these on the ground.) Don't drop your head! Keep it in line with your spine. Once you've pushed up, pick up one knee and bring it to your opposite knee. Repeat with your other knee. Make sure your movement is slow and controlled. (This works your oblique ab muscles.) Repeat based on the number you draw.

Spades - Make sure the space around you is clear. Do a squat (like you were going to sit in a chair), then raise your right leg to your side, working your outer hip muscle. Squat again, then raise your other leg. Make sure that as you squat you sit back on your heels and don't lean forward on your toes. Count based on the number of squats you do - alternate legs. So if you draw a 3, then you will work one leg twice. But it all evens out.

Clubs - Make sure the space around you is clear. Take a large stride back and sink down until your knees make a right angle. Make sure that your knees don't extend past your toes! Push back up and put your feet together again. Repeat with your opposite leg. (These are reverse lunges.) You must do a lunge on each leg to complete one rep. So, if you draw a 10, you have to lunge 10 times on each leg.

Aces - 1 minute of rest. If you draw an ace and you don't feel like you need it yet, you can put it back in the deck. But you never know when you might draw one again!

Jokers - core exercise. This can be a number of things - crunches, crunches on a stability ball, whatever. My trainer had me on a machine-thingy that elevates my body at about a 60 degree angle to the floor up until my hips. My upper body hung towards the ground. I got in it facing the ground and bent over at the waist. The exercise was to raise my body up 20 times, working my back core muscles. Then I put my right hip against the machine and raised up sideways 20 times, working my left obliques. Then I repeated it with the opposite hip against the machine. This is a difficult one to describe without demonstration. But, if you make yourself do some core exercise, you will get the same workout. Bicycle crunches work your oblique muscles, too, so they might be a good substitute. And a prone cobra pose can work your back core muscles as well. Feel free to ask me what those are or look them up!

Other than that, your goal is only to finish the whole deck of cards in 45 minutes. It is possible - just don't quit! I will admit that it may be hard to hold yourself accountable of how many repetitions you do of each exercise, or not taking rest when you haven't drawn an ace. But isn't all of working out about learning how to hold yourself accountable? You have to start somewhere! At least this way it feels like a game, and you're getting a great full body workout.

Bust out of a workout rut and give it a try!

1 comment:

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