From my coach, Laurie:
STRENGTHEN YOUR CORE:
One of the things that gives us functionality both now and into our later years is having a strong core – core muscles include the abdominals (both the rectus abdominals that form the “6-pack” and the deeper transverse abdominals below them), lower back, obliques (along your sides) and hips. Strong core muscles don’t just keep your back strong and free from injuries but they also hold your body upright, improve balance and enable you to move your body with greater control and efficiency. If any (or all) of your core muscles are weak, other muscles have to compensate, resulting in loss of motion, weakness and pain.
Today let’s concentrate on our core and start with these few exercises:
Do 25 basic crunches (working abdominals)
Do 25 crunches coming up with a twist – knee to elbow (working abs and obliques)
Do 3 sets of plank holds for 30 seconds to 60 seconds (depending on your fitness level)
Do 20 slow swimming moves on a ball (you can do these on the floor if you don’t have a ball) for your lower back
Plank holds: Lying on the floor on the stomach lift your body off the floor holding the position with your forearms and toes – keeping the body straight and flat like a plank. Really pull in with the stomach and tighten everything – hold for 30-60 seconds and release. Then do that again 2 x more.
Slow swimming – on an exercise ball roll forward on the ball onto your stomach. Lift your left arm and right leg – really reaching and extending, then the opposite – your right arm and left leg. If you don’t have a ball simply do these raises on the floor….
Ready, set, go!!!
Even if you are not yet in week 3 of the program, these exercises above can still be done – just cut down on the number of them. These are not aerobic in nature and if you do these weekly you will find your core getting stronger, your posture getting better and you will feel better overall!