Changing Up Your Exercises

I frequently come across clients who are stuck in an exercise rut, and just a few simple ch-changes to their routine can breathe new life and results to their program. Not only does it help muscles get stronger, it makes exercise programs more interesting! Turn and face the strange, ch-ch-ch-ch-changes are the best thing for any exercise program.

This month I’ve tweaked five common exercises to make them more challenging for your body:

1. Instead of squats, try Bosu squats: Stand on the Bosu with your feet hip width apart. Bring your hips back as you bend your knees keeping your kneecaps over your second toes. Breathe out as you stand back up. Too hard? Hold onto the wall. Too easy? Add weight. (targets quads and stability)

2. Instead of push ups, try ball push ups: Start with the ball on the floor wedged into the wall. Place your hands on the ball, fingers pointing down and bend and straighten your arms keeping your body straight. Too hard? Lift the ball onto the wall and do wall push ups. Too easy? Don’t use the wall at all. (targets chest and core)

3. Instead of lunges, try side lunges: Step to the side, bend your outer knee and touch the floor on either side of your foot keeping your kneecap over your toe. Try to keep your inside leg straight as you step out and in. Too hard? Do not step out as far or bend as low. Too easy? Add weight. (targets inner thigh and quads)

4. Instead of clamshells, try ball wall roll-ups: Stand beside the wall with the ball at your ankle on the wall. Push the ball into the wall and roll it up/lift your knee. Too hard? Add one hand onto the wall. Too easy? Press harder! (targets glutes and balance)

5. Instead of plank, try plank and reach: On your forearms and toes, keep your body straight and reach alternate arms and tap the floor above your head. Keep your chin tucked in through the motion. Too hard? Drop to your knees. Too easy? Add opposite leg lift at the same time. (targets core)

The combination of these exercises can be a great full body workout. Try doing each exercise to exhaustion three times through the list. Remember, all exercises should be pain free as well as performed slowly and in control.