Be a plank in a new body workout

Fitness Plus
Ceder demonstrates the plank.

Another day, another wish or desire to fulfill. A huge part of being healthy physically is also mental. Before you can achieve that dream body, you must feel great about yourself from the inside. We all know what meditation is, but do we know how good it is for us? You don’t have to sit in a dark room surrounded by candles, legs crossed and humming, to meditate. It can be as simple as taking a few minutes in a quiet place, closing your eyes and imagining a light taking over your body – thinking about how it feels. Is it warm, does it provide you with energy and inner calmness? Harness the energy around you. Embrace it, and most of all know that you contribute to it.

Last time we discussed a few simple but valuable exercises that don’t take any longer then 10 minutes. This time we add to them, because we all know if we’re not moving forward we’re most likely moving backward. The first exercise is called a plank. You can let your body decide the degree of difficulty you take on in doing this, at first and as you progress.

Lie on the ground; face down, arms shoulder-width apart but hands touching almost in a praying form. Lift your body from the ground so all your weight is on your arms and toes. Hold for 30 seconds. When you begin to feel your abdomen shake, that’s when you know it’s working. You want your body to be straight like a plank of wood, hence the name. If you find this too difficult to begin with, touch your knees to the ground. The more often you do this exercise the easier it will get and the longer you will be able to hold it. Shoot for one minute. This again will work out your whole body with a strong emphasis on your core, the abdomen area.

Up in the air like a jumping jack

You all know what a jumping jack is. We have to get some cardio in and this is a great way to do it. For those who don’t quite trust their jumping jack memories, here we go. Stand with your feet together and hands down by your side. Jump as high as you can, clapping your hands straight up above your head. Just when you think you can’t do any more jumping jacks, do five more. You can do it!

Last but not least, butterflies. If you don’t have any five-pound weights, two cans of food will do the trick. This exercise is going to focus on your chest, shoulders and back. Holding one canned food item in each hand, still in a standing position, spread your feet shoulder-width apart. Extend your arms in front of you, elbows and hands together, and bend your arms forward, knuckles to your face with your elbows and hands still touching (your canned food may be in contact as well). Now extend your arms back toward your shoulders. Open them and push your chest out as far as you can. Hold for three seconds and bring your arms back together. Do 15 to 20 butterflies, depending on how you feel.

Rest for 10 seconds and repeat.

Great job! Drink some water, eat a nice, healthy, light breakfast and have an amazing day!

To watch this video on YouTube, click here.

Ceder Finnie is Western Canada’s female champion in light-weight mixed martial arts, with two gold medalist one silver and one bronze. She holds four belts in different styles of martial arts and specializes in muay thay and weapons.

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