April 2017 “How To: “Extra” Challenges

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I would LOVE to see everyone jumping in on one, two or all three of our “extra” challenges in April. Remember, if it doesn’t challenge you, it doesn’t change you!

Ab Challenge:

Crunches: Crunches are good for us…but the proper form is crucial to making gains in our core!

Dead Bugs: Learn how to correctly perform the Dead Bug exercise – a great core exercise and is also good for those with low back pain. To make this a more advanced this exercise, place a medicine ball in your hands and alternate as you reach forward. You can also add ankle weights for an even greater challenge.

Heel Touches: Heel Touches is a great oblique exercise we can do anywhere to tone up our side abs fast! It works our side abdominals and external and internal obliques. And it’s a quick move that you can do a lot of in a short amount of time. Love this exercise? Do more! Add a few rounds throughout your day when you have a minute.

Plank: Ahhhh the plank. It just wouldn’t be right if we didn’t have a daily plank to do. The Crew started with an ab challenge back in April of 2015 with planks and push ups, and we’ve done them every month since then. If you decide not to do this ab challenge, PLEASE continue doing your daily planks even though it’s not on the main calendar.

The plank is one of the best exercises we can do for our core because it builds isometric strength to help sculpt your waistline, improve our posture, and keep us strong and stable while running. Depending on the type of plank you try, you can also engage your back, arms, shoulders, glutes, and hamstrings. Below is a basic plank for anyone new to our Crew. If you’ve already mastered this move, challenge yourself to hold the plank longer, or try the numerous plank variations we’ve done in the past.

Jump Rope Challenge

This is going to be fun! Did you know that even jumping at a very moderate rate burns 10 to 16 calories a minute? AND it burns fat! Well dang….let’s burn some calories Crew!

If you’ve never done this before, don’t fret. Here is a great video on how to work your way into this exercise with 4 easy steps.

Burpee Challenge

I know you hate them but I also know we’ve made some converts and it does get easier and less daunting. PLEASE try them! Don’t just give up before you start. Marion and Jennifer Stoner…I’m talking to you ladies!! 😉

Here are a few variations on the burpee. You don’t have to do the whole move that includes the jump and push up. Start with the beginner burpee with step back and no jumps. Do what works for you and will get you used to this fantastic exercise!