Does your sweat session need simplifying? Make your workouts more effective and efficient by building muscles and routines around a single piece of fitness equipment. Many of us waste valuable toning time waiting for fitness equipment at the gum. Not only are you lowering your heart rate and calorie expenditure between machines, you are also losing precious minutes that could be spent with friends and family. My motto is: get in, “Get to work and get on with your day!” Check out this timesaving lower body circuit.
For this workout, you will need a resistance band that fits snuggly around the legs. These loops are safe and surprisingly challenging. I am using a medium resistance mini-band that is durable and has slight flexibility. If you are unfamiliar with resistance bands, start with one that has light tension. Once you are comfortable, increase the difficulty by purchasing a band with more resistance. These bands are cheap (packs of 5 cost around $10), and can be found at sporting stores, or online.
Jumping Jacks. Spice up standard jumping jacks by adding a mini band. When positioned above the knee or ankle, they focus on activating the glutes and mobilizing the hips for a deep burn that produces serious results.
- To avoid falling, sit down when stepping both feet into the loop. Place it so it hits just above the knee joint. For convenience, keep this band in place for the duration of the workout.
- Stand straight, with the arms extended at the sides
- Bend the knee slightly, as you jump off the ball of the foot, bringing the arms and legs into a star position (this is one repetition). Continue for 20 counts.
Linear Walk. At this point, your buns should be burning. If not, this next move will turn up the heat. Essentially, the linear walk is a moving squat. The goal is to stay low to the ground, while walking in a linear direction. In order to fully benefit from this move, you must remain low, with the hips back, chest up, back flat and eyes forward. While it may be tempting, try to refrain from looking down at your feet, as your upper body often follows the direction of your eyes.
- Depending on your level of comfort, bend down into a deep or shallow squat
- Take a large step to the right, and continue stepping in that direction, without stopping, for 20 counts.
- Once you hit 20 repetitions, keep your feet inline as you pace to the left for 20 counts.
Seated Clamshell. Did you know that there are three different muscles in your glutes? In order to achieve that perfect pop in your posterior, it’s important to work more than just the gluteus maximus (the largest, and often most loved of the trio). Clamshells focus on buffing up the gluteus medius, which lives on the edge of your tush, and is responsible for a strong and stable pelvic bone.
- Sit down so the heels are planted on the ground, and the knees form a 90 degree angle.
- Keep the core engaged and the shoulders back as you slowly push the knees out into a wide stretch. Allow the heels to supinate.
- Roll the feet back into a flat position, and draw the knees in until they are touching (this is one repetition). Continue for 15 counts.
Repeat this circuit 3-5 times
Your workday may be stressful, but your fitness routine doesn’t have to be.
To learn more about personal training options and Ashley's new virtual workout program, which can be done from the comfort of your home, visit ashleyblakefitness.com.
Read more Sports Doc for Sports Medicine and Fitness.