Health and Fitness
The Best Three Exercises to get you Beach Ready
By Cheryl Alker
So you could not possibly have failed to notice that the temperature is starting to rise and, believe it or not, the children will soon be breaking up for school which means one thing; your body is going to be exposed! This is the time of year when we hit the beach, take up water sports and go on vacation. So for whatever reason, there is no doubt about it summer means less clothes and often more outdoor activity.
One of the biggest keys to getting in shape for summer is starting before it hits! It is right around the corner, so don’t wait till June 1st to decide that it is time to get in shape, to be ready the work has to be put in now.
One of the biggest excuses I hear from people for not working out regularly is a nasty four letter word ……. TIME!
Believe you me, I get it. So with this in mind I am giving you 3 exercises that should target all the major areas of your body, yes you read correctly, just THREE. Do these every day and that beach body will be ready to hit the waves!
THE PUSH UP
Place your hands firmly on the ground, directly under shoulders.
Ground your toes into the floor to stabilize your lower half.
Brace your core (tighten your abs as if preparing to take a punch), engage your glutes and hamstrings, and flatten your back so your entire body is neutral and straight.
Lower your body.
Begin to lower your body—keeping your back flat and eyes focused about three feet in front of you to keep a neutral neck—until your chest grazes the floor. Don’t let your butt dip or stick out at any point during the move; your body should remain in a straight line from head to toe. Draw shoulder blades back and down, keeping elbows tucked close to your body (don’t “T” your arms).
Push back up.
Keeping your core engaged, exhale as you push back to the starting position.
Imagine you are screwing your hands into the ground as you push back up.
Repeat for 10 to 20 reps or as many as can be performed with good form.
The setup for the squat is incredibly simple. Stand with your feet slightly wider than your hips. Your toes should be pointed slightly outward – about 5 to 20 degrees outward.
Look straight ahead and pick a spot on the wall in front of you. You’ll want to look at this spot the entire time you squat, not looking down at the floor or up at the ceiling.
For a bodyweight squat put your arms straight out in front of you, parallel to the ground.
Keep your spine in a neutral position.
Your weight should be on the heels and balls of your feet as if you were pasted to the ground. You should be able to wiggle your toes the entire movement.
Send your hips backwards as your knees begin to bend. It’s important that you start with your hips back, and not by bending your knees.
Keep looking straight ahead at that spot on the wall.
As you squat down focus on keeping your knees in line with your feet. Do not drop your buttocks lower than your knee joint.
Push back up to standing
The plank is one of the best exercises you can do for your core because it builds isometric strength to help sculpt your waistline and improve your posture.
Depending on the type of plank you try, you can also engage your back, arms, shoulders, glutes, and hamstrings.
This is what most people consider to be a standard plank.
Lie facedown with legs extended and elbows bent and directly under shoulders; clasp your hands.
Feet should be hip-width apart, and elbows should be shoulder-width apart.
Contract your abdominals.
Tuck your toes to lift your body (forearms remain on the ground); you should be in a straight line from head to heels.
Hold for 60 seconds or as long as you can.