Fitness Friday: Fearless Workout from Nike Training Club

Happy #FitnessFriday! Today we’ll be toning and strengthening our core. Today, I’m sharing the 15-minute Fearless Workout from Sofia Boutella courtesy of Nike Training Club. This workout has a total of 5 moves that you will repeat three times.  Are you ready?  Let’s do this!

If you have an iPhone or iPad, you can download the Nike Training Club app FREE of charge. This is one of the many at-home workouts & stretch routines available to you.

Grab a mat, and let’s get started!

The first move in the Fearless Workout is the Crunch Circuit.

1)  Lie on your back with hands behind your head and legs slightly apart in a V-shape.
2)  Squeeze your abs in tight to lift your upper body and shoulder blades off the ground.
3)  Return to starting position.
4)  Crunch forward again and extend one arm straight in front of you, with your palm-side facing up.
5)  Lower back down.
6)  Crunch forward again and extend the same arm straight out in front of you with the palm side facing down.
7)  Return to start position and repeat with the opposite arm.
8)  Repeat for one minute alternating arms, as above.

Check out this YouTube clip to see dancer Sofia Boutella demonstrate this move.

The second move in this workout is V-Ups.
1)  Sit upright with your knees tucked into your chest, feet elevated off the floor, and hands in a supportive position behind you.

Courtesy of Nike Training Club

Courtesy of Nike Training Club

2)  Extend legs out in front of you as you lower your upper body back towards the floor.
3)  Crunch back in to start position and repeat for a total of 60 seconds.

Watch a YouTube clip of modified V-Ups below:

The third move in this workout is Side V-Ups with Leg Kicks.
1)  Sit upright with knees tucked in and feet off the ground. Swivel to one side and keep your hands in a supportive position behind you.
2)  Kick your legs out as you lower your upper body towards the floor.
3)  Crunch your knees back in.
4)  Kick the top leg out in front of you.
5)  Bring it back down to start position.
6)  Kick the top leg behind you.
7)  Return to start position and repeat on the other side.
8)  Do this move for one minute.

Watch a YouTube clip of modified Side V-Ups with Leg Kicks below:

The fourth move is V-Hold with Leg Kicks.

1)  Sit upright with knees tucked in to your chest, feet off the floor and hands in a supportive position behind you. This is the same starting position that you did above in move #2.
2)  Tighten your abs as you kick one leg towards the sky.
3)  Return to start position.
4)  Tighten your abs as you extend the same leg out in front of you.
5)  Return to start position and repeat, alternating sides for one minute.

Watch a YouTube clip of modified V-Hold with Leg Kicks:

The fifth move is Side High Kicks.

1)  Start on your side with legs stretched out, using your arms for support.

Courtesy of Nike Training Club

Courtesy of Nike Training Club

2)  Bring your legs in towards you bending both knees.
3)  Kick out with both legs to make a 90-degree angle, making sure you keep both legs as straight as possible.
4)  Bring both legs back in towards you chest.
5)  Return to start position and repeat for one minute, switching legs halfway through.

Repeat each move 2 more times for a total of three sets.

Congrats! You are DONE!

Lose Weight in a Week: 4 Easy Ways to Drop Pounds in 7 Days

Lose Weight In A Week

More than likely, if you are reading this post you fall in to one of two categories:

1) You are sick of being overweight, feeling unhealthy, and have no idea where to start

OR

2) You’ve been eating too many desserts lately OR slacked off exercising (or both) and want to lose the 5-10 pounds you gained while you weren’t looking

Whichever of these two buckets you fall into, good news — you’ve come to the right place!  This post will give you 4 Easy Ways to Jumpstart Your Weight Loss and Drop Pounds in Just 7 Days.  I’m serious!  Try these tips for just seven days, and comment below and share your results.

I’ve given this same advice to my coaching clients, and they have had success.  Read their Testimonials here and see what they had to say for yourself!

Without further delay, here are 4 Easy Ways to Lose Weight … starting TODAY!

Drink Water

Water has zero calories, zero carbs, and no sodium.  It’s great for revving up your metabolism, and it flushes out toxins (and excess water) from your body.  I’ve complained myself that water is boring & tasteless.  If this is how you feel, add a lemon or lime wedge.  Plain sparkling water is ok too as long as the sodium content is very low (aim for 30mg or less).  Avoid juices, energy drinks, soda (yes – even diet soda), etc. this week.  You can drink one cup of coffee or tea per day, but don’t add sweeteners or creamers.  (C’mon … it’s a 7-day commitment, not forever!  You want to lose weight, don’t you?)

Cut Out White Bread, White Rice, and White Pasta

Cutting out white-grain products or simple carbohydrates and replacing them with whole-grain or complex carbs diet will slim you down quickly.  Simple carbs are high in sugar, low in fiber, and while they taste good and give us comfort they have little to no nutritional value and cause belly bloating.  They are digested very quickly and leave you hungry just a short time after eating.  Replace white grains with whole-wheat bread, rice substitutes like quinoa and barley, and vegetables, which are digested more slowly & keep you feeling fuller longer.

Do Some Kind of Cardio Every Day for 30 Minutes

Wait — don’t close out of this post!  I promise, this isn’t a deal breaker!  If you want to burn calories, you have got to move.  Again, this is a 7-day challenge to kickstart your weight loss goal or slim down for that bikini you’re going to be wearing in two weeks.  If you don’t have a solid thirty minutes, you can break it up into two 15-minutes sessions or three 10-minutes sessions.  You MUST have time for that?!  No casual strolling here either.  After a warmup, get that heart rate up for a good 30 minutes by brisk walking, walking uphill, jogging, get your butt to a Zumba or other dance class, or jump on any piece of aerobic equipment such as elliptical machine.  You can even go old-school, low-tech and do 30 minutes of jumping rope, jumping jacks, or anything that gets your heart rate up for 30 minutes.  I like to use the FREE Nike Training Club app where there are tons of free workouts just waiting for you & many require NO EQUIPMENT.  No excuses … JUST DO IT!

Get More Sleep

This one isn’t so bad, eh?  Who doesn’t long for more zzz’s?  And guess what?  Your body needs it.  A study published in 2012 found that just a few nights of bad sleep can throw your metabolism into a tailspin.  The study showed that getting four hours of sleep a night for four nights made healthy people’s bodies resistant to insulin — a condition that leads to weight gain, diabetes and other serious health problems.

Not everyone needs eight hours of sleep per night.  Some need less, some actually need more to function optimally.  You can find out how many hours you need by reading this post I wrote for MindBodyGreen.  For the next 7 days, though, focus on adding just 30 minutes of sleep each night.  You might have to turn off the television a little earlier or wait until tomorrow for your turn at Words With Friends, but your body will thank you.

After you try this, please come back & leave a comment below & let everyone know about your progress!  

Other posts you might like:

How Do You Know If You Need a Life Coach?

Motivation — Where Are You?

What’s Past The Comfort Zone?

 

 

5 Foam Roller Stretches to Ease Sore Muscles

 

I was very gung-ho to start some at-home weight training this week, and jumped full steam ahead into the Better Butt Workout courtesy of Nike Training Club app for iPhone.

The fifteen-minute workout was a good one with three sets of five killer moves.  Given that I used muscles that have been on a break for WAY TOO LONG, two days later I am still suffering from muscle soreness.

I know how well my trusty foam roller helped me stay loose and pain-free during my half-marathon training, so it made sense to turn to the foam roller to stretches to ease my sore hamstrings and glutes from the Better Butt Workout!

Here are 5 Foam Roller Stretches to Ease Sore Muscles in your legs and glutes!

(Note: all stretches to be performed with a full standard-size (3′ x 6″) foam roller)

Need a foam roller? The Magic Roller from Balanced Body is a great one!

1) The Quadricep Massage –  to relax muscles and increase circulation to the front of the thigh muscles.

How to do it: Kneel on floor.  Place the roller on the floor horizontal to your body.  Lie face down (prone position) with the roller just above your knees.  Your elbows should be bent & forearms touching the floor.  With your arms, gently roll your body forward towards your upper thighs.  Push body back and return to starting position.  Repeat for 30 seconds – one minute.

2) The Gluteus Maximus Massage – to improve circulation to the muscles in your butt!

How to do it: Sit on the foam roller placed horizontally on the floor with feet and hands on floor in front of the roller.  Push roller backward with your butt.  Allow roller to glide back and forth under your butt muscles for about 30 seconds.

3) Piriformis Stretch – another good butt stretch!

piriformis-stretch-foam-roller

How to do it: Kneel down.  Place both palms on roller horizontal on the floor in front of your body.  Stretch arms out straight.  Extend one leg back.  Lean forward as roller is pushed forward.  Hold for 30 seconds.  Repeat with opposite leg & hold.  Do this twice.

4) Sitting Hamstring Stretch – this one is my favorite!!  I always have sore hamstrings because mine are super tight!  This will S-T-R-E-T-C-H the back of your thigh muscles.

seated hamstring stretch

How to do it: Sit on the floor with both legs straight out.  Bend one knee in bringing the sole of your foot in towards the opposite thigh.  Straighten out the other leg and place heel on the roller.  Flex your toes towards your body.  Hold for 30 seconds.  Repeat on opposite side.  Do this twice.

5) Supine Hamstring Stretch – A supine stretch is one that is done lying face up.  This one will also stretch the back of the thigh muscles.

How to do it: Lie on your back and bend your knees.  Place the roller lengthwise between your knees and ankles.

supine-hamstring-stretch-1

Press knees and ankles into the roller.  Extend your legs up towards the ceiling and flex your toes.

supine-hamstring-stretch-2

Hold as long as it is comfortable and return to starting.  Do this 3 times.These stretches are all ones that I learned from a book by Caroline Corning Creager, P.T. called Therapeutic Exercises Using Foam Rollers

All of the photos in this post were also taken from the book!

Other posts you might like:

What’s Past the Comfort Zone?

How Do You Know If You Need a Life Coach?