Monday, April 17, 2017

April ARMS Week 3

Welcome back to #AprilARMS. I've been watching the Boston Marathon and getting excited about signing up for some races in the fall! We're in the 3rd week of our arm exercises and should start to see some definition -- even if only slightly! Pat yourself further down on the back, because you've been improving shoulder flexibility and mobility!

Once again, be reminded each WOD (workout of the day) is easily modified if you have issues with knees or spine. You should be stronger and motivated to attempt the recommended reps and sets ONLY to the point of your level of comfort and fatigue, but NOT at the expense of injury. Engage your core to support the spine. How? Tighten your abs as if about to be punched in the gut, but you can still talk. Never sway the back when reaching for overhead moves.

If you have questions, please leave a comment!

Sunday, EASTER, was a day of rest from our #AprilARMS challenge. Rest days are just as important in the fitness world as workout days. The body needs time to repair to be stronger. Rest days are beautiful to refresh the soul as the body recovers! We tend to get zoned-in on the physical and leave the spiritual out of focus. Use rest days wisely!

Americans tend to have many national days around food. The next two days are no different! Monday is NATIONAL CHEESEBALL DAY and Tuesday is NATIONAL ANIMAL CRACKERS DAY. The week's arm exercises merrily roll along until until Saturday when a more demanding exercise will call you out! But, let's focus on the Monday and Tuesday twinsie workout.

**ARM CIRCLES: Stand with feet hip-width apart, core engaged. Lift arms laterally from sides to shoulder level, palms out with fingers pointed up. (1) Do small circles forward for 1 minute. THEN, bend hands at wrist for fingers to point down. (2) Do small circles backward for 1 minute. THEN, repeat (1 & 2) for a total of 4 minutes.
**SWIMMERS: These look like Michael Phelps! Press palms together, with elbows bent, in front of chest and pointing fingers straight ahead. Now, simply straighten arms keeping palms pressed as if you're slicing through the water in front of you. At full extension, separate hands outward laterally and circling back to starting position = 1 rep (30 reps).
**PRAYER PULSES: Curl elbows up to shoulder level, press palms (as in prayer) and elbows (in front of face) together, pulse up keeping palms and elbows together and bringing back down = 1 "prayer pulse" or "chest press pulse" rep (as many as you can in 2 minutes).

Wednesday is National Hang Out Day! Gather your friends to hang out and sweat out the following workout: 
**BICEP CURLS: Stand with feet under hips and elbows bent at waist (with/without weights) and simply curl fists toward shoulders and lower back to waist level = 1 rep (3 sets/15 reps/1 min rest). Then, do the -->
**BICEP CURL w/ OVERHEAD PRESS: Follow instructions for the bicep curl up to shoulder and, then, raise both arms overhead rotating palms facing forward, then, lower arms rotating fists back to shoulder position and down to waist level = 1 rep (3 sets/15 reps/1 min rest).
**TRICEP KICKBACKS: Stand with feet hip-width apart and with soft knees. Engage core leaning slightly forward from hips. Place fists (with/without weights) at teh side of hips and extend the arms straight back in a "kickback" and return back to hip = 1 rep (3 sets/15 reps/1 minute between).

It's National High 5 Day! Give everbody a Hi-5 letting them know they're stronger than they were yesterday...and so are you! 
**CHAINSAW (a.k.a Crossbody): Standing with knees soft and core engaged, turn left foot outward keeping right foot with toes straight ahead (resembling a high lunge), cross the right fist (with/without weights) from left hip across the chest and up to shoulder, return to left hip = 1 rep (3 sets/15 reps/1 min rest). Then, switch to right high lunge position and repeat sets/reps crossing from right hip to left shoulder.
**FRONT & LATERAL RAISES: Standing with feet hip-width part, toes pointing forward and arms extending down, engage core. Raise arms to shoulder height, lower back down, and then, lift laterally (straight out from the sides) and lower back down to legs = 1 rep (3 sets/12-15 reps/1 min rest).

You could save or enhance the lives of others by donating blood! And, simply by
registering with to donate your organs, tissue and corneas. To show your awareness and support of National DonateLife Day, wear blue and green! 

We are no strangers to today's **BENT OVER LATER FLYS: Stand, bent over from hips with soft knees and core engaged. With arms extended down (with/without weights), "fly" arms up to shoulder level and back down = 1 rep (3 sets/15 "flys"/1 min rest). Be careful not "fly" above shoulder causing injury.

We celebrate National Earth Day by making good environmental choices for this big blue marble we call home! Plant trees, conserve water, recycle, reuse, reduce, repurpose! Thank You, God, for Planet Earth!
**UP UP DOWN DOWNS: Keep core engaged tight to support spine. Start in the up (straight arm) position of a push-up and up on toes. Lift your right hand and replace it with your right forearm. Do the same with your left forearm. You should be in the elbow plank position and still up on toes. Now, reverse the process starting with right hand and following with left hand to back at starting position = 1 rep (12 reps). These work the shoulders and bra strap areas reducing the appearance of fat! TO MODIFY drop knees and keep core engaged.

RELAX! You've earned this day! National Take a Chance Day invites to you summon courage and, then, TAKE A #SundaySelfie to prove it!

You've made it to the final week of #AprilARMS! Look for the next week's blog post in your inbox by signing up. Or, you can see a daily slice by following REFIT with Sam i AM on Facebook.

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