Tuesday, August 16, 2016

5 Minute Legs and Glutes

Sometimes it's just hard to get a 20, 30, 45, or 60 minute workout completed BEFORE or AFTER your work day starts.  Structured workouts aren't for everyone.  Sometimes we just have to go with a few "lighter" programs to start, to add, or to even just have as an intentional plan.

Here are 5 simple moves that can easily be done for 1 minute each:
  
It can be repeated for up to 3 times.  If you have knee problems, I would recommend that you cut the repetitions in half (only do 30 seconds each move and start with only 1 circuit instead of trying for 3).

Sumo Squats:
Stand tall, hips and glutes/butt muscles pulled in and under your pelvis (your body should be standing as straight as possible, no curve in your back).  Next position your legs out to your sides, toes and knees pointed to the corners of your room.  Back stays straight, bring your arms in front of you to retain balance.  Slowly bend as deeply into the squat as possible, keep your knees over your ankles to prevent injury.  After you get into the squat, dig your heels into the floor and push up from the floor to a "standing" position, repeat back into the low squat at your own pace for 30 seconds to 1 minute, depending on your level of experience.

















Lunges (right or left leg - do 1 minute interval on EACH leg)
Stand with legs about hip width apart.  Then move right leg forward into a front lunge, make sure that your knee is 90 degree angle over your ankle. Left leg needs to push back behind your body.  Legs will be positions as if you are standing on rails (this will give you good balance).  As you move through each lunge, bend the back leg as low to the ground as possible without touching the floor.  As you press into "standing position", press your right heel firmly against the floor and push your body weight through the heel. This will work the quads and glute.  Repeat the lunge (bend up and down through the movement, no need to move your feet during the interval).  Lunge up and down for 1 minute (do 30 seconds if you are just beginning or have knee trouble).
"Completing the Lunge"


"Standing Position Right Leg"
"Middle of the lunge Right Leg"
"Standing Position Left Leg"
"Middle of the lunge Left Leg"




"Completing the Lunge Left Leg"
Standard Squat:
Stand with feet hip width apart.  Push your glutes towards the back of the room and bend at the knee.  As you bend into the squat, be sure to keep knees over the ankle (if knees push passed your toes, readjust your alignment in order to prevent injury).  Squat as low as you can.  Your legs will get stronger as you practice.  As you push back up to standing position, press into your heels (pressing firmly against the floor) to get back to standing position.  Repeat for 1 minute (or 30 seconds depending on your strength levels).

"Standing Position"
"Lowering into the squat"


"Bend as low into the squat as possible"



"Keep knees over ankles"




Calf Raises:
These can be made as easy or as difficult as one wishes.  I like to add some weights to make these a little more challenging and to get more from the movement.  However, you can start them without weights until you feel strong enough to add them.

Start in standing position





















"Elevate heels until pressure is in the ball of your foot"
"Elevate heels, slowly"

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