To be in optimal health takes a combination of eating right and engaging in some physical exercises. A regular exercise regime helps to tone up the muscles, burn calories and gain strength.
Not everyone can make it to the gym every day, but there is a lot that one can do right at home to keep the body in great shape.
An exercise regime needs to begin with a warm-up session in order to protect the muscles from injuries such as pulled muscles.
A good warm-up session lasts between fifteen and twenty minutes. It stretches and warms up every part of the body ready for work-out. The more intense the workout, the more adequately the body needs to be prepared through warm-up. Each exercise should take 25-30 seconds.
WARM UP BEFORE THE MORE INTENSE WORKOUT SESSION
An arm swings session is a great way to kick off the warm-up session. Gently move the legs shifting the weight from one leg to the other while swinging the arms as far as they can possibly go. This prepares the body for the exercises and also loosen up the shoulders.
This can be followed up with jumping jacks which involve jumping up and down legs apart then together while the arms are stretched to clap the hands above the head then dropping them to the side.
Run on the toes rather than on the entire foot in order to prepare the ankle joint.
This graduates to high knees in a version of jogging on the spot that is vigorous enough to ensure that the knees are lifted high enough to be in line with the hips.
Butt kicker rows fit in well in the warm-up. This is a step above the jumping jack.
Stand upright and fold back one leg at a time to get the foot as close to the butt as possible while preparing the arms too by stretching them straight ahead then pulling them back.
This combination prepares the entire body for the intense exercise session.
Toe Touch Kicks
Toe touch kicks are very effective for the back. This involves standing upright, and lifting one leg at a time until the toes touch the fingers of an outstretched hand, without bending the back. The right leg touches the left arm and vice versa.
Cross over toe touch involves bending to touch the toes with the fingers. The right hand touches the left toes then change over to the left hand-right leg.
A number of different variations of the cross over toe touch can be introduced in the session to ensure that the body is well warmed up.
SQUAT EXERCISES TO BURN CALORIES
Squat and Jump
The body is adequately warmed up, and the session is becoming more intense. This session begins with squat and jump, an exercise that involves squatting then jumping.
Squat, stick the chest out and put arms firmly in front as if getting ready to punch an opponent then jump, stretching out the arms while jumping.
Squat with arms in front of the chest as if preparing to punch.
Rise up while stretching one leg as far as it can go and tapping the floor with the toes. Alternate the legs. This is very good for strengthening the knees and working out the butt. Stretch out the folded arms in order to work out the shoulders.
Go down on the floor, palms flat on the floor and toes supporting the body from the lower end. The rest of the body is raised above the floor.
Use the legs to do the frog jump; bring the legs together then jump to have them apart, while keeping the palms firmly on the floor for support.
Get back up. Bend down. One leg is firmly on the ground for support while the other one is stretched as far back as possible.
The knee that is firmly on the ground bends to form a ninety-degree angle. The knee is in line with the toes; it does not bend forward beyond the toes. The other foot is stretched, and the knee approaches the floor.
Back Lunge To High Knee
Stand up straight. Squat to enable you to push one leg as far back as possible while the other leg remains firmly on the ground. Stretch the leg then bring it up as high as possible, till the knee is at the level of the hip.
Keep the arms moving in order to ensure that the entire body is being worked out. Lift the arms up to chest level when the leg is pushed back and bring them down to the sides while the knee is rising up. Twenty five to thirty seconds with one leg then change over to the other leg.
Go down on the floor, palms flat on the floor and toes supporting the body from the lower end.
Move one leg forward till the knee is in line with the chest. Alternate the legs, simulating mountain climbing.
Start slowly and gradually increase the speed till you are at a running pace.
COOL DOWN EXERCISES
The body needs to cool down after an intense workout. Walking is a great way to allow the body to cool down. Stretching the muscles that have been worked out is also very important. This helps the body to relax gently and slows the heart rate, which has been elevated during the work-outs.
Stretching helps to remove the waste products from the muscles that have been worked out, preventing discomfort and injuries. A cool down session normally takes between five and ten minutes.