Tuesday, May 1

May Challenge: Bikini-Ready Booty + Killer Arms

I'm jumping on the Monthly Challenge Bandwagon and I'm so excited to do it! :) I've been thinking long and hard about what my first monthly challenge will be. Although we try to live healthy lifestyles throughout the year, many of us are focusing on gearing up for bathing suit season (EEEK) right now. I wanted to provide you with a challenge that can be done in less than 20 minutes and can be done in addition to whatever your workout efforts may be for the month. Hope you like!

May Challenge: Bikini-Ready Booty + Killer Arms

Click on the calendar for a larger version.

So there it is folks! My first {Monthly Challenge!} Yippee! Here are some tips to remember when doing each exercise. 

TIPS

Incline Pushups 
You can do these on your couch, the hood of your car, against a wall or anywhere else that may give you an incline. Things to remember...

- Arms should be a little wider than shoulder width.
- Keep your belly button tucked in to ensure your core is tight throughout the whole movement.  
- Perform the movement slowly and with control.
- Breathe out as you push up. 



Air Squats
Air Squats, AKA Body-weight Squats, are by far one of my favorite go-to exercises. They are great for beginners and the elite athlete, as well. Things to remember...

- Stand with feet a tad bit wider than hip-width apart.
- Toes should be slightly pointed outward.
- Slowly lower to 90 degrees and push through all four corners of the feet to raise back up into the starting position.
- Arms can raise to perpendicular to the ground on the way down and lower to the sides on the way up, or your hands can be behind your head during the movement. Choose which one feels most comfortable.
- As you get better at these, up the intensity by increasing your speed. (Ensuring to remember all aspects of good form) 
- Breathe out on the way up.


Decline Pushups
Decline Pushups are great upper body toners! Elevate your feet on your couch, a weight bench or an exercise ball (more challenging). If the movement is too challenging to perform a pushup, simply hold in the plank position with your feet elevated for 15-30 seconds. This will help you gain the strength to eventually perform decline pushups with no problem. Also, supporting more of your weight on the bench or your couch will help make the pushup easier for beginners. Things to remember...

- Arms should be a little wider than shoulder width.
- Keep your belly button tucked in to ensure your core is tight throughout the whole movement.  
- Perform the movement slowly and with control.
- Breathe out as you push up.
 
I love working out outside, so I typically do my incline pushups with my hands on the hood of one of our cars, and my decline pushups with my feet elevated on the back bumper. I have an Xterra so the back bumper has a rubber step pad. :)

This challenge should take very little time out of your day and will pay off dividends. As the repetitions for each exercise increase, don't be afraid to break them up if necessary. Complete them in one sitting, but maybe do 10 or 12 at a time. Let me know what you think of my first challenge!

Be Strong. Be Healthy. Be Balanced.

- Lauren



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