Posts

Fitolution Exercise #4 and Habit #4

Welcome to Exercise #4 of the Ab Challenge and to Habit #4.
 

Exercise: 

VERTICAL TOE TOUCHES

INSTRUCTIONS:  

Step 1

Starting Position: Lie flat on your back on the floor / mat with your knees bent and feet flat on the floor. Your arms are by your sides. Brace your abdominal muscles to stabilize your spine. Pull your shoulder blades down your back. Try to keep these engagements throughout the exercise. Slowly lift both feet off the floor. Straighten your knees until your thighs are vertical to the floor. Your toes can point away from your body. (DO NOT move your thighs beyond this point as that shifts your body weight from your butt into your low back, causing increased stress to the low back). Put your hands on your thighs. Shoulder blades are flat on the floor.

Read more

Fitolution – Exercise #8 and Habit #8

Welcome to Exercise #8 of the Ab Challenge and to Habit #8.

Did you know your back is part of your core?

No worries . . . today’s exercise throws your “back” into the mix. This exercise works the back when you stabilize yourself on the stability ball.  Your torso is challenged by having to work against gravity.  This in turn activates the back.

Exercise: Stability Ball Prone Walkout
Step 1

Starting Position: Lie on your stomach over the top of the stability ball. Begin in an all-fours position with your torso on the ball and hands and feet on the floor. Lengthen your legs and stretch your heels to the back of the room. Your hands should be under your shoulders.

Take a few deep breaths. Notice how your abdominals want 
to rest on the ball when you inhale.

Exhale and pull your abdominals away from the ball. Try to keep them pulled away even when you inhale. This is your abdominal engagement.

Read more

Fitolution – Exercise #7 and Habit #7

Welcome to Exercise #7 of the Ab Challenge and to Habit #7.

Exercise: Supine Spinal Twist with Rib Grab and Progressions

·     Step 1

Starting Position: Lie on your side on a mat with your legs and feet stacked. Both knees are bent to about 90 degrees and the knees are tucked up toward the hips. Your hips and shoulders are stacked and vertical to the floor. The spine and head are in a straight line. Reach your lower arm out along the mat at chest level. Wrap your upper arm around your trunk holding your ribcage. Engage your abdominal muscles to stabilize your spine. Pull the shoulder blades down toward your hips without moving your trunk. Try to hold these engagements throughout the exercise.

Read more

Fitolution – Exercise #6 and Habit #6

Welcome to Exercise #6 of the Ab Challenge and to Habit #6. 

Exercise: 
Kneeling Hay Baler a/k/a Woodchopper

  • One leg up on the foot and the other back on the knee. 
  • Hold a medicine ball in both hands near the hip of the rear leg. 
  • Twist through the trunk and shoulders to bring the ball across the body and over the opposite shoulder. 
  • Keep both arms straight during the whole movement. 
  • When finished with one side, switch to the other side.

Challenge – Did you know the human body is designed to be most efficient when standing?  So for a challenge, try the Standing Hay Baler. 

  • Standing with legs about hip-width apart.
  • Step one foot forward flat on the ground and the other leg back behind the body on the ball of the foot. 
  • Hold the medicine ball in both hands near the hip of the leg that is behind. 
  • Twist through the chest and shoulders to bring the ball across the body and over the opposite shoulder.  
  • Keep both arms straight for the whole movement. 
  • When finished with one side, switch to the other side.

Tips – 

  • To add more resistance, use a heavier medicine ball or dumbbell.
  • Keep your abs tense at all times for a good mind-muscle connection.
  • Begin with rotation initiating in your torso.
  • Do not round your back at any point of the exercise.

The Day #6 core exercise mimics your body’s natural function, andtargets the abdominal muscles: 

  1. Oblique.
  2. Transverse Abdominals, which is the deepest layer of muscle tissue.
    To get the total benefit, flatten stomach at the beginning of the exercise 
    to make the TA contract. 
  3. Rectus Abdominals, which is located between your ribs and your pelvic 
    bone.  RA contracts when distance between ribs and hips is shortened 
    i.e. lowering the ball toward your hip.

Habit:

Keep doing your first–fifth habit.  Why?  Habits are cumulative — they build on each other, one by one.  So a new habit doesn’t mean ditch the old ones.  A new habit means you simply add one more tool to your tool belt.  
In other words, keep doing the older habits – 

  1. Taking a 5-Minute Action 
  2. Eat Slowly
  3. Habit #3 – Stop When 80% Full
  4. Habit #4 – Eat Lean Protein at Every Meal
  5. Habit #5 – Eat at least 5 servings of colorful fruit/vegetables

Habit 6: Make Smart Carb Choices

  1. Most people benefit from having some carbohydrates in their diet.  “Smart carbs” are slower-digesting, higher-fiber, and nutrient-rich. These include such foods as:
    • whole grains (e.g. brown or wild rice, quinoa, buckwheat, etc.)
    • beans and legumes
    • fruits and starchy vegetables (e.g. potatoes, sweet potatoes, bananas and plantains, etc.)
    • This is a “difficult” habit for some.  That’s why it comes purposely after two “easier” habits.
  2. Understand that:
    • Low-carb” is not ideal; most people look, feel, and perform better with some carbs in their diet, even if they’re trying to lose weight / fat.
    • Not all carbs are created equal: slow-digesting, high-fiber, nutrient-rich “smart carbs” are a great nutritional choice and not the same thing as processed sugars.
  3. Make a shopping list of the “smart carbs” you have discovered and like and will eat.
  4. Do you avoid wheat and/or other grains (e.g. sweet potatoes)?  Need suggestions to replace those?
  5. For now, it doesn’t really matter what specific foods you choose as long as you get into the habit of choosing smart carbs.
  6. Ensure that you are able to buy, prepare, and have smart carbs on hand, easily available.
  7. Discuss how to add smart carbs to your regular menu. 
  8. You have already learned what an approximate serving size is.
    1. 1 cupped handful per meal.
    2. Adjust portion sizing to your needs and activity levels.

Strength or Cardio:

Is it a strength or cardio day? If you don’t have a solid strength exercise plan, refer to the plan given on Day #1.  Cardio day?  Ex: walk, run, jog, dance, elliptical, Arc, row, bike, whatever you prefer.

Nutrition:

Red Potato is a Smart Carb andis particularly healthy. The skin is loaded with fiber, B vitamins, iron and potassium.  Getting more potassium in your diet reduces the effects of sodium and may help lower blood pressure, according to the Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2010. 

Quick & Easy Recipe – 

  • Boil in salted water until very tender.  
  • Drain.  
  • Toss with herbs, salt, cracked pepper, and lemon juice or vinegar.

Fitolution – Exercise #5 and Habit #5

Welcome to Exercise #5 of the Ab Challenge and to Habit #5. 

Exercise: 
“Stir the Pot” on a Stability Ball
Kneeling behind a stability ball, lean body forward at a 45-degree angle and rest elbows on the top of the ball. Keep stomach muscles tight and elbows pushing up from the ball directly under the shoulders.  It’s important to maintain a straight line from head to knees.  Move the ball around clockwise 10 times and then counter-clockwise 10 times.   Repeat 4 more times.

Want a CHALLENGE?

Read more

Fitolution – Exercise #3 and Habit #3

Welcome to Exercise #3 of the Ab Challenge and to Habit #3.
 Today you are going to work on the obliques. 

Exercise: 
Side Riser Plank

This plank variation is a hybrid of a side forearm plank and a high plank.

  • Begin with the high-plank set-up (see below). Lower down onto the right forearm and spin the legs so they are stacked with weight on the outer edge of the right foot. Reach the left arm up toward the ceiling.
  • Place the left hand down and push the body back up to high-plank position.
  • Lower down onto the left forearm and spin the legs so they are stacked with weight on the outer edge of the left foot. Reach the right arm up toward the ceiling.
  • Place the right hand down and push the body back up to high-plank position.
  • Repeat this alternating pattern for 10 reps. Perform two sets.
Read more

Fitolution – Exercise #2 and Habit #2

Hello friend, Welcome to Exercise & Habit #2 of the Fitolution Ab Challenge. 


Exercise: 

Reverse Crunch 

  • Step 1 –  Starting Position: Lie on your back on a mat with your knees bent, feet flat on the floor and arms spread out to your sides with your palms facing down. Gently exhale. Engage your abdominal/core muscles to support the spine. Slowly lift your feet off the floor, raising your knees directly above your hips. Bend the knees to 90 degrees. Hold this position and breathe normally. Use your arms as a base of support.
Read more

Fitolution – Day #14

It’s the 14th day of The Fitolution and pre-superbowl.  So how’s about a little fun.
 

EXERCISE:  

Saturdays are cardio days.  Make sure it’s at least 30 minutes of cardio. Always make sure to warm-up properly.

 
BONUS EXERCISE(S):

You know that whenever I’m involved, there’ll always be Burpees.  

Because I love them and you secretly love them . . . Burpees!  
There is no substitute.  

Plus a bonus . . . squats.  Could it get any better than that?

Burpees + Squats = mini workout

  • 1 Burpee   + 9 Squats
  • 2 Burpees + 8 Squats
  • 3 Burpees + 7 Squats
  • 4 Burpees + 6 Squats
  • 5 Burpees + 5 Squats
  • 6 Burpees + 4 Squats
  • 7 Burpees + 3 Squats
  • 8 Burpees + 2 Squats
  • 9 Burpees + 1 Squat
Read more

Fitolution Day #12

Here we go with the 12th day of The Fitolution and you have choices to make.


EXERCISE:  

Thursdays are cardio days.  Make sure it’s at least 30 minutes of cardio. Always make sure to warm-up properly.

 
BONUS EXERCISE(S):

Disclosure:  Improper technique will result in excessive recruitment (use) of the lumber extensors (low back muscles).  Stabilize your low back throughout the exercise and use a lighter resistance if you are unable to control movement in the low back.
Always consult your GP before starting a new exercise.

Have a leg curl machine?  That makes it  . . . 

Don’t have a machine.  No worries there are so many variations to choose from with equipment or just body weight.

Read more

Fitolution – Why you don’t need a coach . . . part #2 nutrition

We are 14 days into the New Year, 2019.  By now you have started a training program or at least put a plan together.  We’ve already talked about health and fitness through exercise.  Today we talk about achieving through nutrition.  

You’ve got this.  You just need to do 2 things.


 1.  Cut out sugar. 

Yeah, that guy, friend, family member, doctor said sugar is bad and there was an article about it in that trusted nutrition journal, it was on the same day as that article about the celebrity with no knickers and the fake story about immigrants lacing tins of tuna with mind control drugs.
 
Anyway, sugar is bad, all the important people say so and Gwyneth Paltrow sweetens her ayervedic tea with the urine of South American squirrel monkeys and she’s way slim.

Yeah, so all you need to do is cut out all the sugar. So no sweets, cakes, biscuits, breakfast cereals, fizzy drinks, fruit juice, baked beans (because they have loads of added sugar an’ all) oh and fruit, no fruit because, you know… Sugar!
 
That’s OK, I’ll just put loads of honey on everything instead, honey comes from bees so that’s natural, Gwyneth Paltrow said so.
 

Read more