Busy Parent Fitness Challenge - Day 13: Legs & Butt

by - Sunday, October 26, 2014

Strengthening the biggest muscles in your body helps you with endurance, but did you know having more muscle also increases your metabolism? I'll admit it, I hike so I can eat chocolate. Today's workout will work your quads and glutes, but will be amplified if you add in some cardio. Don't have time for a jog? Do some jumping jacks, skip, or run on the spot in between exercises so your complete workout lasts at least 20 minutes. 

1. Hip Raises (aka Glute Bridge): do 30.  Squeeze your butt cheeks together when you lift your hips!
    • variation (not pictured): Single Leg Glute Bridge - lift one leg up and point your toe at the ceiling. Do 15 on one side, then switch legs.
Hip Raise - starting position
Lift and squeeze (your buttocks of course!)
2. Weighted Walking Lunges: Now that you are used to doing lunges, up the ante by grabbing a couple soup cans or light dumbbells. Do 20-30 lunges per side or set a timer for 3 minutes. 


Lunging with left leg. 
3. Step Ups: Do these on concrete steps, a bench, or picnic table. The higher the step, the harder the workout will be, so start low and increase height slowly. Do 20-30 per side. Aim for controlled movements.
    • variation: do weighted step ups, holding a light dumbbell in each hand.


Tips

Remember to stretch afterwards so you aren't limping around 'til the next leg workout! Dancer's Pose (below) is a good one.

Grasp your right foot in your right hand. Hold it for a few seconds.
Lean forward and pull your foot back at the same time.
 Regular cardio will burn fat and reveal muscle! Try to do 20-30 minutes two to three times a week.

What are your lower body training objectives? I would like to have strong legs for ski season and shape up my backside!

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