The Ultimate Plank Series

We are familiar with the research that suggests the plank exercise is effective in activating abdominal and lumbar muscles. The plank has been a favorite of mine for years, but, I realize it can become boring. Need to change it up? The ultimate plank series by The Movement Fix’s Dr. Ryan Debell (read more about Ryan on his blog) might be what you need!

9 exercises for a total body workout!

You’ll be wanting to pin this amazing at-home exercise circuit to your Pinterest board! In just 45-minutes your strength workout will be complete! Using dumbbells and a fitball, perform the 9 exercises listed. Spend one minute on each exercise consciously moving through each repetition in a slow and controlled manner. Complete the entire sequence three times for optimal muscle development.

Corresponding links, each which explain and/or demonstrate each exercise, can be found below. Preview each link before starting the workout. Be sure to include an adequate warm-up and proper stretching.

Exercise Circuit #4 - www.trainwithnicole.net

Exercise Circuit #4 – http://www.trainwithnicole.net

Lunge with fitball

Chest flys

Reverse flys

Crunches

Overhead tricep extensions

Wall squats

Curl to a press

Fitball “pikes”

Too fat to get fit? – A client’s perspective

“I can’t breathe, I topple when I try to balance, and I am not strong enough. If only I was lighter, thinner and stronger I could get fit like the other people at the gym. I am just too fat to get fit

My fitness classmate was expressing what I had felt just a few years ago. These destructive thoughts would justify the delay of starting a fitness journey. “Why start, it’s beyond me”.

We have all had similar thoughts at times. Even the fittest and healthiest of us have binged over the holidays and thought “I have already broken my diet, and had a few days of inactivity, I’ll start the healthy eating and exercise next week”.

An occasional splurge should never be a problem, we all need one, but it shouldn’t come at the cost of being able live the active life and have fun adventures without feeling drained.

Nothing prevents us from taking action than ourselves. Who wouldn’t want to be enjoying fun activities and adventures? Feeling healthier is a choice, nature doesn’t have to take its course.

It’s never too soon to begin the process.  The two things that hold most of us back most are the fear of change, and a tendency to focus on the pain instead of the gain.

In the past I felt caught in the “too fat to get fit” mentality, I justified a delay of action, and became inactive. Eventually I realized that change doesn’t just happen. It’s something you have to focus on.

How can we filter through the noise of commercial solutions?  We have all seen the miracle shakes, the latest fitness exercise equipment, apps, gadgetry and intimidating gyms full of people that look nothing like you. The fitness industry can be confusing, there are no shortage of gimmicks and exaggerated promises.

I was very overweight and unhealthy before I was lucky enough to find a great health professional that was able to clear through the fog of fitness technology, focus on the benefits of outdoor adventures and motivate a change that built from my starting point rather than the average, fitter, gym member.

Nicole was able to build a custom path to fun activities through fitness for me. She took a creative approach, focused on individual interests rather than the typical score sheet of reps from the gym. In the early days of the transformation Nicole would focus on finding the activity that would spark the interest to take the action to make change. For me, the activity that I found most pleasure in was hiking. The training activities focused around balance, strength and stamina that would support better hiking which would build confidence and drive continued fitness through increasingly challenging adventures.

With Nicole’s help I was able to gradually lose 100lb, and eventually conquer the Manitou Incline, then Pikes Peak, then a 100k bike rides and the Ascent. Next year I am signed up for my first ½ ironman.

I now know that you are never too fat to get fit, and it’s never too soon to start the transformation, at 53 I can attest to it never being too late. My advice is to find a health professional that has done it before, that makes fun adventures the goal and fitness the side benefit, and that can spark the motivation to conquer the fitness challenges.

-David Sweetman; Colorado Springs

 

© David Sweetman

David (before)

 

© David Sweetman

David (after)

 

Start training this week for a Thanksgiving day 5k

Ever consider running or walking a 5k event? Here’s your opportunity! Consider joining me in the 18th annual Thanksgiving Turkey Trot 5k at the Briargate YMCA. What a great way to burn calories before putting yourself into a food coma! As I browsed through my September issue of Better Homes and Gardens magazine I discovered an eight-week training plan (credit to Jenny Hadfield of CoachJenny.com) for a 5k–3.1 miles–that I thought was ideal. This training plan and the Briargate YMCA’s Turkey Trot go together like turkey and stuffing. Use the plan below to ensure that your body is prepared for the event. Before you know it you’ll cross the finish line saying, “Where’s my pumpkin pie?”

What do I need to do?

Make the commitment. Register for the Turkey Trot here. Out of town? Most cities offer a 5k run/walk on Thanksgiving morning. Check active.com for a race near by.

In addition to your regular physical activity, set aside one 30-minute workout every week — starting this week! Warm-up with an easy walk and lower leg stretches for 5 minutes. Follow the plan below for a duration of 20-minutes. Finish the workout with a 5-minute walk and/or stretch.

What’s the plan?

Weeks 1 & 2 (October 4-17) = Walk 2 minutes, run for 30 seconds

Week 3 (October 18-24) = Walk 2 minutes, run 90 seconds

Week 4 (October 25-31) = Walk 2 minutes, run 2 minutes

Week 5 (November 1-7) = Walk 2 minutes, run 3 minutes

Week 6 (November 8-14) = Walk 2 minutes, run 4 minutes

Week 7 (November 15-21) = Walk 1 minute, run 4 minutes

Week 8 (November 22-26) = RACE WEEK! Walk 1 minute, run 4 minutes. Do this on Sunday and Tuesday. Take Wednesday off and be prepared to run on Thursday, Thanksgiving day.

Questions? Just ask. Let me know when you’re registered and good luck!