HOLIDAY GIVES #3 - FRIEND WORKOUT

 Friends make your workout fast and fun. Grab your gear and get to the gym! Today we give our friends the gift of health and exercise with my Friend Workout. 

A Friend Workout is my Gives #3 gift.  Give the gift of a work out to a friend to boost her day.  Nothing is better than jumping into your gym clothes and sweating with a friend. A friend will say funny things while you are performing very challenging Bulgarian Split Squats with weight.  She will laugh hysterically while you get yourself into position to do prone hip raises.  Oh the folks at the gym want to laugh too, or cover their eyes, but your friend, no, she will howl at the ridiculous position one has to maneuver oneself into and make off color jokes and you will both laugh.  That same friend will say also, that 20 biceps curls were not enough and could we please squeeze out another 10?  She will push you, while you push her.  Thank you sweet friend.

Today it is your task, and sweet task it is, to find a friend and undertake a workout that you will both perform.  You could try an old favourite or a new one, but doing it with a friend will make your training memorable. I have been at this for fifteen years but there has never been a time when I worked out with a friend that I didn’t learn something.  Today, for example, I learned that modifications for exercises are possible but you really have to have the full roster in your head for easy access.

Today I worked out with my friend Pia http://cookingwithpia.ca/author/pia/ .  I wanted to do a reintroduction workout because I am coming off of four weeks of cleansing http://www.toscareno.com/book/eat-clean-diet-4-week-cleanse/  followed by two weeks of raw juicing. By necessity we do not train heavily while cleaning, because we are asking the body to do other things - garbage removal to be precise.  This is exhausting work that yields marvellous results that participants are still raving about, but now it’s time to get back into it.

Having learned long ago that a reintroduction workout is absolutely mandatory after a period of less intense training, that was what was on tap today.  I learned this from my late love, Bob Kennedy, who would always push for this kind of workout after a trip.  He would say, “Tossee it’s time! Two sets. Twenty reps.  Light weight.  Every body part!” in his authoritative voice, and away we would go.  That workout helped me get myself on track countless times and today I paid homage to the discipline by executing it with my best friend Pia.

Here is how it went down: 

CIRCUIT THROUGH ALL QUICKLY TAKING LITTLE TO NO REST

ARM CIRCUIT consisting of 10 biceps curls + 10 triceps kickbacks + 10 bent over lateral raise + 10 Cuban Rotations + 10 shoulder press ALL performed one right after the other with NO rest.  Use a light to moderate weight and circuit through this twice.

FIT BALL CHEST PRESS.  Lay on a fit ball and with a moderate weight dumb bell in either hand, perform 20 reps, rest for 15 seconds and repeat.

LAT PULLDOWNS. Take a seat at lat machine and perform 20 reps with good form and using a moderate weight. Let the lat muscles do the work, not the biceps.  Repeat twice.

ABDOMINALS:  2 sets of 20 crunches on a fit ball, engaging core deeply and keeping glutes squeezed tight. Follow up immediately with 2 sets of 20 reverse crunches.

ABDOMINALS: 2 planks with feet on a flat bench and elbows on a fit ball. Hold for a count of 60 seconds for each.

TRICEPS PRESS DOWNS & OVERHEAD PRESS OUTS: 2 sets of 20 press downs, performed by doing 10 traditional press downs and then 10 overhead press outs. 

MEDICINE BALL PRONE HIP RAISES: with both feet on a medicine ball, lay flat on your back and perform 10 full range hip raises, squeezing knees together and glutes tightly.  Follow up quickly with 10 little pulses.  Repeat this twice.  Make it harder by putting a plate on your stomach.

HEEL PRESS TO CEILING: Get on all fours, placing a yoga mat under you, if you need extra cushioning for your knees.  Lift your right leg and flex foot to ceiling. Perform 100 heel presses, using a small movement.  It is more of a pulse than a full range movement.  Repeat with left leg. 

SKATERS: Hold a medicine ball in your hands.  Stand in an athletic squat position, light on your feet.  Leap left and right, covering as much distance as you can, and keeping yourself in motion at all times.  Perform 20 reps - 10 left and 10 right.  Repeat for another 20 reps.

SISSY SQUATS: 2 sets of 20.  Make the exercise harder by doing it while holding a plate.

PLATE LOADED LEG PRESS: 2 sets of 20 reps with a moderate weight.

LEG EXTENSIONS: 2  sets of 20 reps with a moderate weight.

NB: Many of these exercises were selected because they did not put undue pressure on the knees. 

That’s it! You feel that your whole body has received a wake up call. “Hello, it’s me.” Thank you Adele, for those words from your uber fabulous song.  But you get my point.  Your muscles will be completely stimulated and you should repeat this series of exercises the next day.  Then take a rest day and implement your regular training program.  It’s a heck of a way to get back on track and your bestie will make it all the more fun.

Have fun in the gym everyone. It’s not punishment, it’s privilege.

Remember, I am always listening.

Warm holiday hugs,

Tosca

  PS. Tell me your "get back to it stragegy" in the Comments section below. I really do want to hear about it. Now!