What’s so special about January 1st? Not much. Yes, it’s the start of a new calendar year and for many people the start of new behaviors or resolutions. But what about the other 364 days of the year? Why shouldn’t they be just as special? Why shouldn’t each one of them be an opportunity to start a new positive behavior? EVERY DAY IS A CHANCE TO MAKE A COMMITMENT TO YOURSELF, so why not start TODAY?!
Starting now provides an advantage over the holidays in many ways. Instead of waiting to do something until the New Year and letting ourselves go for the months of November and December, let’s not dig ourselves into a hole that can be really difficult to get out of. We’re going to get a jump on things! The holidays can also be very stressful. Exercise improves our resiliency to stress by increasing the threshold for what we perceive to be a stressful event, improves our recovery from stress and releases hormones that make us feel really good.
The first Friday of every month we’re going to add a muscle group to our resistance training programs, and here’s the best part: they will all be things that we can do in our own homes with little to no equipment! The only pieces of equipment we’ll be using are dumbbells, resistance bands, a stability ball and our own body weight.
Tune in each Friday to learn what muscle group we’ll be adding to our program and by the time the holidays get here you’ll already be well on your way to a fit, healthy, energized body!
TIPS FOR A SUCCESSFUL WORKOUT
- Always do a warm-up of cardiovascular activity OR a set of 15 repetitions using a very light weight for each muscle group before doing your intense resistance training.
- Perform 8-12 repetitions of each exercise, doing 1-2 sets with no more than 60 seconds of rest between each set.
- Make sure you are using a challenging weight or body position. Your last 2 repetitions should be extremely challenging to complete with good form.
- Work each muscle group 2 times per week.
- Do not work a single muscle group two consecutive days in a row. Allow 1-3 days of recovery.
- ALWAYS stretch at the end of every workout.
- To change the intensity of the band move your feet apart, bring your hands closer to the anchor point or hold both ends of the band in one hand.
Dumbbell Concentration Curls Seated on Ball – Sit on the stability ball with legs slightly open. Place the back of the right arm against the inside of the right thigh. Keeping a neutral wrist and your palm facing upward, bring the hand up toward the shoulder and then slowly lower back down. Keep some resistance on the muscle at the bottom of the curl.
Standing 1 Arm Curl with Band – Anchor your band by wrapping it around a strong and stable point. Hold one end of the band in your right hand with your arm extended out to the side at shoulder height. With the palm facing upward, curl your hand in toward your shoulder and then slowly extend the arm back out.
Overhead Triceps Extension with Band – Step both feet on one end of the band and hold the free end with both hands. Bring the arms up fully extended over the head with the band behind your back. Slowly lower the arms down behind your head and then extend them back up over the head, fully extending the arms and giving them a good squeeze. Keep your elbows in close to the ears.
Triceps Kickbacks with Dumbbells – Lean forward at the waist and place your left hand on your left thigh for stability. Bring your right arm up at your side with the dumbbell hanging down toward the floor. Keeping your upper arm at your side, extend the forearm back until the arm is fully extended. Lower the dumbbell back down toward the floor, but keep some resistance on the muscle. Keep both shoulders the same distance from the floor.
Lying Triceps Extensions on Ball – Begin seated on the ball with one dumbbell in your hands. Slowly roll yourself down the ball until it is between your shoulder blades and is supporting the neck and head. Keep the hips lifted. Using both hands, straighten your arms up toward the ceiling. Bending only at the elbows, lower the forearms down behind the head. Extend the arms back up toward the ceiling.