When time is of the essence, you have to be creative in how you move your body and get exercise. Many of us spend most of the day sitting at a desk or standing behind a counter, and could benefit from 3 quick toning moves you could do anywhere.
Toning Move #1: The Couch Potato Move
If you’re going to be a couch potato, why not work on your quadriceps (thighs) and abdominal muscles (tummy) while you watch TV? Sitting in a dining room chair will make this easier, but a firm couch will do. Sit on the edge of your seat with your back straight and your feet flat on the floor, legs uncrossed. Then, gently lift one knee up so your thigh is off the seat and hold for 5 seconds. Gently put back down and do the other leg. Alternate legs until the commercial break, and then walk around and stretch until the show begins again.
Toning Move #2: Killer Gams
Borrowed from ballerinas, this move is sure to please those suffering from aching feet and legs during long shifts in a standing position. Try to do this when no one is looking though, to avoid confirming to co-workers that you are, indeed a complete nut case. As you’re standing at a counter, rest your hands on the top of the counter for support and gently bend both knees. Then, straighten them as you rise up on the balls of your feet. Balance for a few seconds and then float back down. This will both stretch, tone and strengthen your calf and thigh muscles, as well as warm up your feet and ankles to reduce stiffness and soreness. Don’t do this one in heels or without the support of a counter top to avoid toppling over. It will eventually help your balance and keep you light on your feet. You can also bend your knees again once you’re on your tip toes to stretch out those feet.
Toning Move #3: Tush Toner
Sitting at a desk all day doesn’t have to mean a flabby caboose. As you’re sitting at the computer, sit tall and clench your cheeks together to try to raise yourself up a bit. Hold for a few seconds and release. The gluteus muscles are the largest in the body and may be prone to cramping if out of shape. Take it easy with this one and only do a few reps the first day or two.
You’d be amazed at all of the exercise you can get on the fly throughout the day without even changing your routine. Start with these three simple toning moves, and they’ll help you get into the habit of thinking about your body. It will improve your posture, help your breathing, and surprise you with the results in the mirror.