Strength Workout #4: Bosu Challenge

Again, all these exercises can be done without the use of a Bosu ball so don’t fret!

Active Warmup. Focus on warming up your hip flexors with some leg swings and hip rotations (among other things)!

The Workout – Bosu Challenge:
20 regular pushups
20 regular crunches with your heels raised
20 leg lifts
boat pose (30 sec)
20 shoulder dips
20 shoulder shrugs
20 leg lifts from a shoulder shrug position (i.e., with your butt hanging off a chair and all your weight supported by your arms, raise each leg in sequence. You only need to lift your leg a couple inches to get the benefit. This will target your hip flexors!)
20 chops with a medicine ball
20 chops with a medicine ball while standing on a bosu ball
20 pikes on a yoga ball
20 supermans
20 bird-dogs
20 pushups with a twist (Watch the video… but bring your knee to your opposite elbow while you are lowering into the pushup – instead of while in the plank position. Keep your twisted knee off the ground and raise back up. Switch legs. We’ll make our own video of this at some point.)
side planks (each side, hold for 45 sec and do 10 leg lifts during that time)

10 single leg squats on a bosu ball (each leg; with opposite leg balanced behind, i.e., not a pistol squat)
10 lunges on a bosu ball (each leg)
Balance on one foot on a bosu ball for as long as you can. Record the amount of time for each foot so that you can compare when you get stronger!
Do as many regular pushups as you can. This means to exhaustion (i.e., you fall on the floor because you can’t push up or lower yourself down, you absolutely can’t do anything else, and after you collapse you have to roll over to get yourself up to a sitting position because your arms are too tired to help push you up). Keep a record for later comparisons.
Cool down. Stretch with focus on your hip flexors, hamstrings, quads, and also on your pecs. If you have a foam roller, pay that baby a visit!

Strength Workout # 3: Variety Pack

This workout has a bit of everything. It has some exercises using a medicine ball. If you don’t have access to a medicine ball or a weight, a jug filled with water will work just fine!

Active warmup.

Workout – Variety Pack:
20 rowboats (this is normal yoga “boat pose” with bent knees except move your knees toward your chest while you move your chest toward your knees. This is the same motion as if you were on a rowing machine. Your feet never touch the ground.)

20 side to side crunches with a medicine ball
14 spiderman pushups
plank (x2 for 45 sec each; rest between sets)
side plank (x2 for 45 sec each side; rest between sets)
20 shoulder dips
20 shoulder shrugs
20 bridges
20 step ups with a leg extension (Step up a stair or into a doorway. When you have stepped all the way up with one foot, extend your opposite leg backward approximately 6-10 inches while flexing your glutes. Step back down and step up with your opposite leg. This exercise is meant to get your glutes firing independently so that you can strengthen each side.)

20 high side plank switches (Start in a high plank position and rotate into a high side plank. Rotate back to a high plank position and repeat on the other side.)

30 side leg lifts each side (10 each of your foot parallel to the floor, toes pointed toward the ground, and toes pointed toward the ceiling)
10 yoga pushups
10 side tricep pushups (each side)
10 circles with a medicine ball (each direction, with a squat)
20 pikes on a yoga ball
10 circles with a medicine ball while standing on a bosu ball (each direction, with a squat)
10 elbow to knee twist while standing on a bosu ball (each side)

10 diamond pushups
flutter kicks (60 sec)

Cool down!!

Strength Workout #2: Bosu Fun

Don’t worry if you don’t have a bosu ball. All the exercises in this workout can be done without one, but the bosu adds an extra challenge in balance. Balance is an important aspect of any strength regime because it works the small connecting muscles that are especially ignored during traditional weight machine workouts. Small connective muscles and ligaments help distribute forces during exercise that would otherwise be absorbed by large muscle groups, possibly overloading them and causing injury.

Don’t forget the active warmup!

The Workout – Bosu Fun:
** Note: I will include links to videos when the exercises are new, otherwise see previous posts if you’re just jumping in and need some guidance.

15 regular pushups
20 regular crunches
12 spiderman pushups
20 crunches on the bosu ball
20 pushups on the bosu ball (do this with the ball-side facing the floor)
12 stationary inchworms
10 side to side planks on the bosu ball (take the same pushup position as above and shift the weight in your upper body from hand to hand to get a rocking motion – do this 10 times to each side)
20 dips
20 shoulder shrugs
30 sec plank with leg lifts (do 4 leg lifts for each leg – lift about 6 inches off the ground toward the ceiling)
30 sec side plank with leg lifts (each side – do 6 leg lifts for each leg, again about 6 inches upward from the floor)
10 arm circles while standing on the bosu ball (each side – include the squat)
20 situps with a medicine ball throw (I do these without someone holding my feet and my partner is standing up)
20 plank pushups (10 times pushing up with each hand)
20 side to side crunches with a medicine ball (I do these with my feet on the floor, but if you want a bit extra, go ahead and pick them up)
Circle touches while standing on the bosu ball (couldn’t find a good video so here’s my explanation – Stand on the bosu with the flat side on the floor. Place 1 object each at 9, 10:30, 12, 1:30, and 3 o’clock about 5 inches from the edge of the bosu. Balance on one foot. Do a mini squat with your opposite leg back for balance, reaching toward the object at 9 – actually touching it is just a bonus. Come back to a standing position. Repeat for the other objects and then work your way back to the beginning for a total of 9 squats. Switch legs and repeat. Good luck holding your balance. The first time you try this you may want to do it without the bosu ball! This is a great exercise for balance and building ankle strength which is essential to any running activity, especially ultimate frisbee.)
10 chops while standing on the bosu ball (with a medicine ball)
10 backwards leg extensions while standing on the bosu ball (balance on one leg, extend the opposite leg backwards about 6 inches while clenching the glute)

Don’t forget to cool down and stretch. Focus on stretching those leg muscles and hip flexors!

Strength Workout #1: Whoa it’s a Workout

5 sun salutations
10 hip rotations each directions
20 arm swings (side to side, forward, and backward)
20 trunk twists
20 lunges
20 squats

Warmups need to be active instead of stationary stretching to warm up the muscles, as opposed to stretching tendons. Focus needs to be on warming up the core and the shoulders.

The Workout (“Whoa it’s a Workout):
Note: These are designed for a “rather in-shape” male. As a woman, I usually do the same workout but only do half the reps for any kind of pushup exercise, or I do as many as I can with proper form. The following sequence is designed to have minimal rest time in between exercises (i.e., no more than 1 min) unless otherwise noted.

12 regular pushups
20 regular crunches
12 pushups with feet up on a chair
30 sec plank
30 sec side plank (each side)
12 spiderman pushups
30 sec flutter kicks (while laying on back)
12  stationary inchworms
20 shoulder dips (use a chair or steady low table)
20 shoulder shrugs (from the same position as the dips… keep elbows locked)
20 crunches on a yoga ball
10 circles with a medicine ball (each side)
20 leg throw-downs (do leg lifts if no partner)
5 yoga pushups (make sure to do these with good form)
5 triangle/diamond pushups
10 side tricep pushups (each side)
20 pikes on yoga ball (may need an extra minute rest after this one)
20 supermans (level 1 according to this video)
10 bird-dogs (each side, bring knee to opposite elbow)
20 bridges
10 side plank hip raises (each side)

Cool Down:
3 sun salutations
Static stretching focusing on arms and twists (some examples include gripping the inside of a doorway while leaning through to stretch the pectoralis muscles, sitting twists, and stretching the triceps)

Strength Training Introduction

We began our training journey without access to a weight room or gym facilities. Thus, I designed a strength training regime that one can do in any open space using just body weight. Since my husband and I both have other lower body training goals (running), we decided to focus our strength training on primarily upper body and core conditioning.

Core conditioning is a great benefit to any type of running activity and is essential to sports that contain asymmetrical movement (such as ultimate frisbee, soccer, etc…). Core conditioning strengthens and increases flexibility in support muscles of the abdominals, glutes, lower back, and hip flexors. Injuries in other areas of the body (especially the legs) are commonly a result of instability or tightness in core muscles. Thus, a strong core is a building block to powerful running, changing direction, and speed, essential elements to ultimate frisbee and marathon running.

All of our workouts contain a warmup, workout, and cool down section, and last from between 45 min to 1 hour. Many of the exercises are self-explanatory (i.e., regular pushups), but if they are not I will provide a description and a picture or video link showing the proper form. We are doing two strength training sessions per week. Some sessions are designed around a certain theme (i.e., circuits of exercises, pushup variations) or certain home equipment (i.e., a bosu ball, medicine ball, or yoga ball).

Here we go!!

Welcome to SEA Fitness

Welcome to my new endeavor! A fitness blog!

First off, you might be wondering what SEA stands for. Strength, Endurance, and Agility!

You also might be interested to know what prompted this new blogging experience. I am a long term runner, soccer player, triathlete, and ultimate frisbee player and have always been interested in maintaining fitness and training for specific athletic goals. I have finished graduate school and am interested in regaining my pre-graduate school fitness and motivation, with an aim to complete a marathon by the end of 2013.

My husband also plays on top nationally-ranked ultimate frisbee team and is planning on trying out for the U.S. National Team in March. He has asked me to be his “personal trainer” so that he can go into tryouts in top shape.

While I do not have any formal training in exercise science, personal training, or nutrition, I do have a plethora of personal experience and the web at my fingertips. Please do not take anything I say as medical advice. I am just here to share the ravings of a fitness enthusiast.

Thus, I am going to use this blog to do a variety of things:

1. Document the workouts, advice, and training regime I have designed for my husband and the sport of ultimate frisbee.

2. Discuss my own marathon journey.

3. Talk about training, nutrition, motivation, gear, and racing.

4. Discuss the benefits of developing and maintaining fitness.

I hope to be posting once or twice a week and look forward to interacting with the blogosphere!