Do It Better – Week 1 Day 1

Welcome to the Do It Better Fitness Challenge, designed to prepare your body and mind to raise your productivity in your day to day.

Today we focus on the core and glutes with these two exercises:

Reverse crunch

The reverse crunch is a core exercise that targets the muscles of the lower abdomen. It is good for developing strong and functional abs, improving and maintaining balance, stability, and good posture in daily life.

  1. Lay face-up on the mat with your arms at your sides. Relax your shoulders and neck to minimize the tension in your upper body.
  2. Starting position: Raise and bend (90 degrees) your knees directly over your hips. Your lower legs are parallel to the floor. Brace the abdominal muscles and hold a neutral spine position with a slight natural curve in the lower back yet with the back firmly against the floor.
  3. Exhale as you contract the abs to curl your hips toward your chest. Your hips come off the mat as you curl. Your knees should remain at the same angle throughout this movement. Your head keeps straight and the neck and shoulders remain relaxed and on the mat.
  4. Inhale and slowly return to the starting position with your hips back on the mat and your knees over your hips still bent 90 degrees.

This exercise seems easy but it´s a bit tricky. These two are the most common mistakes:

Using Momentum: It is tempting to do the reverse crunch fast and use momentum to curl you up rather than the contraction of your abs. Avoid this by doing it slowly and with control.

Rolling Too Far: Only your tailbone and hips should be raised from the mat in the upward phase. Stop when you lose contact with your lower back. If you are doing the reverse crunch slowly you are less likely to go too far than when you are using momentum and doing it in a quicker motion. I want you to focus and feel how your lower abdomen does the work to lift your butt off the floor.

Glute Bridge

The glute bridge isolates and strengthens your glutes (butt) muscles and hamstrings (back of the thigh). When done correctly, the move can also enhance core stability by targeting your abdominal muscles and the muscles of the lower back and hip. This exercise will also improve your posture and can help ease lower back pain. In fact, as long as you have good form, bridge exercises are generally safe for people with chronic back problems and can aid in pain management.

  1. Starting position: Lie on your back with your hands at your sides, knees bent, and feet flat on the floor. Tighten your abdominal and buttock muscles by pushing your low back into the ground before you push up.
  2. Exhale as you raise your hips, by contracting your glutes, to create a straight line from your knees to shoulders. Squeeze your core and pull your belly button back toward your spine.
  3. Inhale and slowly return to your starting position.

Tips to get the most out of this workout

  1. Read the instructions on how to do the exercises. If you skipped it, scroll up. It´s important to keep the technique in mind to perform the exercises correctly.
  2. Watch the first two sets before you start and visualize yourself performing the exercises.
  3. Grab the equipment you need (mat, resistance bands), put them in position, and keep close your bottle of water.
  4. Mute your phone. Next 10 minutes you´ll be unavailable.
  5. We aim for a total of 10 sets (5 sets each exercise), with no rest in between. However, if you need to rest, press pause and take your time.
  6. Each set is 1 minute long. If it´s too much for you right now, do as many repetitions as possible.

Are you ready? Here we go!

Well done!! See you tomorrow.

Don´t miss a workout. Get them all right into your inbox:

.

2 thoughts on “Do It Better – Week 1 Day 1”

Your turn. What do you think about this?

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Rest 30 seconds

0

Lower Back

The Erector Spinae is not just one muscle, but a bundle of muscles and tendons. Paired, they run more or less vertically. It extends throughout the lumbar, thoracic and cervical regions, and lies in the groove to the side of the vertebral column.

Latissimus Dorsi

The latissimus dorsi is the larger, flat, dorsolateral muscle on the trunk, posterior to the arm, and partly covered by the trapezius on its median dorsal region.

Deltoids

The Deltoid muscle is the muscle forming the rounded contour of the shoulder. It is divided into three portions, anterior, lateral and posterior, with the fibers having different roles due to their orientation.

Infraspinatus

The Infraspinatus muscle is one of the four rotator cuff muscles crossing the shoulder joint and is commonly injured. It is the main external rotator of the shoulder joint.

Biceps

The Biceps brachii is  actually two separate bundles of muscles (heads). The two heads of the Biceps vary in length and as a result, are called the Short and the Long Biceps heads.

Triceps

The Triceps Brachii muscles  have three muscle heads: Lateral, Medial and Long head. Primarily responsible for the extension of the elbow joint. The lateral head is used for movements requiring occasional high-intensity force, while the medial fascicle enables more precise, low-force movements.

Forearm
(Anterior muscles)

The Pronator teres pronates the forearm, turning the hand posteriorly. If the elbow is flexed to a right angle, then pronator teres will turn the hand so that the palm faces inferiorly. It is assisted in this action by pronator quadratus.

Forearm
(Posterior muscles)

The Extensor Digitorum muscle helps in the movements of the wrists and the elbows. It extends the phalanges, then the wrist, and finally the elbow. It acts principally on the proximal phalanges. It tends to separate the fingers as it extends them.

Pecs

The pectoralis major makes up the bulk of the chest muscles in the male and lies under the breast in the female.

The pectoralis minor is a thin, triangular muscle, situated at the upper part of the chest, beneath the pectoralis major. 

Abs

The Rectus Abdominis is the most superficial of the abdominal muscles. It is this muscle which forms the six-pack shape! It is a paired muscle running vertically on each side of the anterior wall of the abdomen. There are two parallel muscles, separated by a midline band of connective tissue called the linea alba.

Obliques

The External Oblique is situated on the lateral and anterior parts of the abdomen. It is broad, thin, and irregularly quadrilateral. It is the largest and the most superficial (outermost) of the three flat muscles of the lateral anterior abdomen. 

Glutes

The gluteal muscles are a group of three muscles which make up the buttocks: the gluteus maximus, gluteus medius and gluteus minimus. The three muscles originate from the ilium and sacrum and insert on the femur. The functions of the muscles include extension, abduction, external rotation, and internal rotation of the hip joint.

Rest 40 seconds

0

Quadriceps

The Quadriceps Femoris is the knee extensor muscle.  As a group, the quadriceps femoris is crucial in walking, running, jumping and squatting. It´s subdivided into four separate “heads”.

Hamstrings

A hamstring is any one of the three posterior thigh muscles in between the hip and the knee (from medial to lateral: semimembranosus, semitendinosus and biceps femoris). The hamstrings are quite susceptible to injury.

Lower Leg

The gastrocnemius and the soleus form what we know as calf. They are involved in activities such as walking, running, jumping… 

Rest 120 seconds

0

Rest 90 seconds

0

Rest 60 seconds

0

Trapezius

The trapezius is a broad, flat and triangular muscle. The muscles on each side form a trapezoid shape. It is the most superficial of all the back muscles.

%d bloggers like this: