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Fall Into Winter Fitness Challenge Month #2

Fitness Challenge

You made to the second month of our Fall Into Winter Fitness Challenge!  Can you believe it’s already December?  During this time of the year when the weather is chillier, cookie exchanges are more frequent, and the holiday festivities are in full swing, it can be tough to make your health and wellness a priority.  It’s tempting to just say, ‘I’ll get back to the gym in 2016.’  LSTC is here to help!  Our Fall Into Winter Fitness Challenge will help you keep your wellness goals in check and will offer you fun and quick workouts during these winter months so you can be sure to get that heart pumping and those muscles working.

If you want to catch up with November’s Interval Training Workout, check out the video HERE.

For December, it’s all about the Body Weight Workout you can perform ANYWHERE!  So if you’re traveling this holiday season, no excuses!  LPTA Kate Zanoni is sharing moves that don’t require special equipment and will help you work your whole body.

Here’s the workout:

  1. Push-Ups- Start in a plank position with your arms extended.  Make sure your hands are aligned underneath your shoulders.  Keep your back straight and do not let your lower back sag.  Also, be sure to keep your body toward the floor, keeping your elbows in towards your sides to challenge your triceps before returning to the starting position.  Repeat 10 to 20 reps for 3 to 4 repetitions.
    • Want a bigger challenge? Try a ‘side up’ by lying down on one side and extend one arm into a side plank position.  Engage your obliques by raising your top leg and bringing your knee toward your free elbow then return to the starting position.  Repeat 10 to 20 times on each side and perform 3 to 4 rounds.
      Regular Push-Up

      Regular Push-Up

      Modified Push-up

      Modified Push-up

  2. Fire Hydrants- Start in a quadraped position on your hands and knees.  Make sure your hands are aligned beneath your your hips.  Keep your back flat and engage your core.  Making sure you don’t let your low back or pelvis tilt, rotate one leg to the side away from your body, targeting your gluteals, hips, and core, then slowly return to the starting position.  for tactile feedback, place a foam roller horizontally across your lower back while performing this exercise to make sure you’re maintaining proper lumbar and pelvic stability.  If you have knee discomfort while kneeling, place a pillow beneath your knees for extra cushioning.  Perform 10 to 20 reps for 3 to 4 rounds.

    Fire Hydrant

    Fire Hydrant

  3. Jumping Lunges- Begin in a lunge position with one foot in front of the other.  Bend both knees, making sure your front knee says aligned with the center of your front foot.  Do not let your knee translate forward over your toes because this puts too much stress on your knee joint.  Bend your back knee as well but do not let it touch the floor.  From the lunge position, jump up in the air and switch your feet, landing in a lunge position with your opposite foot in front.
    Jumping Lunges

    Jumping Lunges

    • Modification: If jumping lunges put too much stress on your joints, perform alternating lunges on the floor.
  4. Single Leg Squats- Balancing on one leg, gently sit back into a squat as if you are sitting back into a chair and slowly return to the starting position.  Perform 10 to 20 reps on each leg for 3 to 4 rounds.
    Single Leg Squat

    Single Leg Squat

    • Modification: If you have poor balance, you can hold onto a handrail while performing this exercise.  Alternately, you can perform a regular squat by standing with both feet hip width apart and slowly sitting your bottom back as if sitting into a chair, then slowly return to a standing position.
  5. Iron Cross- Lying on your back, tighten your abdominals and lift both arms and legs a few inches off the floor.  Then crunch one elbow toward your opposite knee while your other limbs remain elevated.  Switch sides and repeat 10 to 20 times each for 3 to 4 rounds.

    Iron Cross

    Iron Cross

Remember, these are exercises you can perform almost anywhere!  You can increase the intensity of each exercise above by performing as many repetitions as you can safely over a period of time.  For example, how many push-ups can you perform in one minute?  How many rounds can you perform in 20 minutes?

If you are new to working out, be sure to get clearance from a medical professional before beginning any new exercise program  to ensure you’re healthy enough to participate in activity that will raise your heart rate.

For more information on healthy living, call Loudoun Sports Therapy Center at 703-450-4300 to speak with one of our clinicians.