Week 1 Day 5!

WOW!  We made it through the work week!  Almost anyway:)  Stay safe this weekend those of you on the East Coast!  Irene is coming:(  Hopefully she is just making a bunch of noise and her bark is worse than her bite.

If you took time off during the week, you can do a full-body circuit training workout by putting Thursday and Friday together, but cut the sets to 8-10 reps each!  And if you want to do the Core Challenge this weekend, it is below.  Make sure you choose at least one exercise for your upper, lower, and obliques, and strive for 3 sets of 10 for each.  And don’t forget to post it on Ava’s Core Challenge thread if you are on BLC so you get counted in the challenge.


Do what you can…feel free to pick and choose. I added variations of some
exercises that most people seemed to like giving everyone a chance to do them
using other tools for added benefit. LET’S HAVE FUN AND LEARN SOMETHING NEW!!!!!





minutes!!! Remember Bob said that you can do all the crunches in the world, but
in order to whittle that waist away you need to burn fat! Without burning fat,
those nice ab muscles will be hidden! So give yourself a bonus point for every
minute of cardio exercise you do during the core challenge. Bonus only counts if
you do the core challenge! Get those hearts pumping!!

Try to work the
upper, lower and oblique muscles. Remember to concentrate on engaging those ab
muscles when doing these exercises. Even though you are trying to rack up those
reps, form is more important. Count each rep as one. For the exercises where you
do each side separate count both sides as 1 rep, not 2 (except side plank)!

Lie on your back on the ground. Have your knees bent and the
balls of your feet and heels placed flat on the ground. Place your hands on
opposing shoulders, so that your arms are crossed over your chest, or behind
your head. This allows you a central rising point. Tighten your abdominal
muscles gently by drawing in your belly button to your spine. Keeping your heels
on the ground and your toes flat to the ground, slowly and gently lift your head
first, followed by your shoulder blades. Focus your eyes on your bent knees, all
the while gently contracting the abdominal muscles. Pull up from the floor until
you are at a ninety-degree angle, or when the elbows are on or past the knees.
Hold the position for a second. Slowly bring the torso back to the floor but try
to keep it slightly elevated off the ground. This means not to place your back
flat to the ground but to keep a slight, yet relaxed, arch.


Begin on your back with feet flat on the floor and your knees up. Support
your head with one or both hands if desired, but keep elbows back and refrain
from pulling on your head. Keeping your low back in neutral position, lift your
head and shoulders from the floor without “tucking” your chin to your chest.
Return to start and repeat.

DUMBBELL CRUNCHES: Lie on floor or a mat on
your back, with knees bent. Grasp a lightweight dumbbell in two hands, palms
facing out, arms extended straight into the air above your shoulders. Feet
should be flat on the ground. Keep a space between your chin and chest (looking
diagonal towards the ceiling). EXHALE: Slowly curl head, shoulders, and upper
body off the ground, reaching the dumbbell towards the ceiling. Try to reach
higher than your feet. INHALE: Slowly return to start to complete one rep. Use
abdominals and hips (not your shoulders) to lift weight. Keep abs contracted
(pull navel towards spine) throughout entire movement.

Begin by lying on your back, placing your hands
behind your ears. Do not put your hands clasped behind your head. Lift your legs
in the air and bend your knees so that your legs form a 90 degree angle. Move
your legs in a bicycle motion. When your left knee is closer to your body, reach
your right elbow to it. When your right knee is closer to your body, reach your
left elbow to it.

Lie face down, legs together and
extended straight, arms bent with hands behind neck, head and neck in a neutral
position. EXHALE: Lift the upper body (chest, shoulders) off of the ground,
“crunching” towards the hips. Hold for 1-2 counts at highest position. INHALE:
Slowly lower with control to start to complete one rep. This is a very small
movement– don’t move further than you can naturally and easily. Keep legs
squeezed together, hips on floor. There should be no movement from your hips to
your toes. http://www.sparkpeople.com/resource/exercises.asp?exercise=147

Lie face down on an exercise mat or carpeted
surface. Rest on your forearms with your palms flat on the floor. Keep your
spine in the neutral position. Push off the floor, so that your body is parallel
to the floor, and rise up on your toes. Rest on your elbows. Keep your back flat
and your body in neutral alignment from your head to your heels. Think of your
body as a table being supported by two sets of “legs” (your arms and your feet).
Hold this position for as long as you can, up to 60 seconds. Repeat for as many
reps as you are able.

Lie on left side, legs together,
feet stacked. Wrap right arm around waist. Keep head and neck aligned with
spine. Prop upper body on bent left forearm (be sure elbow is directly below
shoulder). Press hips toward ceiling, using abs to stabilize torso. Hold for 15
seconds and that counts as 1 reps. Be sure not to hold breath. Exercise will be
easier if feet are staggered instead of stacked. Remember to do both sides and
every rep completed counts as 1.

Lie on your
back with your knees bent and feet on the floor. Raise your buttocks off the
floor until your back forms a straight line from knees to shoulders, and hold
for 1 second before lowering.

up on mat or carpeted surface. Place your arms alongside your body or spread
out. Place your feet on the top of the stability ball. Keep your abs contracted
to hold your torso stable. Lift your hips upwards as you press down with your
ankles and heels on top of the stability ball. Raise your hips off the floor
until your body forms a straight line from your shoulders to your heels. Squeeze
your buttocks together and hold for a moment. Release and lower your hips back
to the starting position. Repeat for as many reps as you are able. Advanced Tip
– For more of a challenge, try this exercise with only one leg placed on the
ball and the other leg crossed over at the knees. Switch legs and repeat the

Lie on your back with your knees bent and your
feet on the floor. Contract your lower abdominal muscles so that your hips tilt
down and your buttock lifts slightly off the floor. Do not use your legs to
raise your buttocks. Your lower back should be pressed against the floor. Return
to start and repeat.

Stand up straight with feet together
and bend from the waist to your left, then straighten up and do the same to your
right side. Bend only as far as comfortable and make sure you bend from your
waist and to your sides, not forward. Count both left and right sides as 1 rep

DUMBBELL SIDE BENDS Start with feet shoulder width apart, holding
dumbbells. Knees should be slightly bent. EXHALE: Bend trunk to the left to a
comfortable position and hold for 2-3 seconds. INHALE: Return to starting
position and repeat to the right side. Do not let your weight take you forward
or backwards.

Stand up with feet shoulder width
apart, hold a pole or broom on your shoulders and twist left then right. Twist
only as far as comfortable. Complete twist to left and right counts as 1 rep.

STANDING RUSSIAN TWIST: Hold a medicine ball or weight between both
hands and stand tall with your back straight, and shoulders relaxed, abs
engaged, legs straight, and feet placed slightly wider than your hips. Extend
your arms straight out in front of you, holding the ball/weight at chest or
shoulder level. EXHALE: Without dropping your arms, pivot on your left foot and
rotate your ball/weight and your torso as far as you can to the right. INHALE:
Return to the starting position. EXHALE: Reverse direction; pivot your right
foot and rotate all the way to the left. INHALE: Return to the starting position
to complete

Stand with feet together. Slowly bend from hips
to lower torso, touching fingertips to ground. EXHALE: Lift right leg behind you
to hip height, keeping hips level. Bend left knee slightly if needed. Hold for 5
counts. INHALE: Return to start and repeat on other side for one rep. Try to
keep weight on left leg and only slightly on hands (fingertips). Keep abs tight.

Lie on floor with legs together, arms extended overhead,
belly button pulled in toward spine. Keeping head between arms, slowly raise
upper body and legs off floor to form a gentle banana-like curve. Hold for a
slow 30 counts. Do not hold your breath!!!! Try to keep breathing steady and
even. Concentrate on holding abs in.

Begin seated
on floor, knees bent, feet flat, arms bent with hands on floor below shoulders.
EXHALE: Straighten arms (do not lock elbows), allowing butt/hips to rise off
ground until your body from head to knees is in a straight line parallel to the
floor. Hold for 2 counts. INHALE: Return to starting position for one rep.

Start behind the ball, place your
midsection on the ball and roll forward until your hands reach the floor just
below the shoulders. Slowly walk out with your hands until the ball moves
towards your toes. Only walk out as far as you are comfortable (either to your
hips, knees, or ankles). Once you’ve reached your point of comfort, slowly walk
back to the starting position, breathing steadily throughout. Keep your core
strong by not dropping your hips. Your body should be as straight as possible.

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