The "Big Four"
Not sure where to begin your strength training workout? Here is quick and versatile routine that you can add into your workout repertoire.
First, warm up. Next, start your workout routine by using one of the “big four” lifts (bench press, deadlift, squat, overhead press) with a barbell. These main lifts are your bread and butter exercises, work your way down to low reps and higher weight.
After completing one of the “big four” do your complimentary lifts. This includes lifts that involve dumbbells, machines and bodyweight for high reps.
Some example routines may include:
- Bench press is your main lift followed by dumbbell bent over row, face pulls, and abdominal strengthening as your complimentary lifts.
- Overhead press is your main lift followed by dumbbell/cable upright rows, weighted/non weighted dips, and pullovers as your complimentary lifts.
- Squats is your main lift followed by weighted/non weighted walking lunges, knee hikes with band, and leg curls as your complimentary lifts.
- Deadlift is your main lift followed by kettle bell/barbell hip thrusters, farmer walks, and hyperextension as your complimentary lifts.
Treasures at the Farmer’s Market!
Have you ever tried garlic scapes? I saw them at our local farmer’s market this week and they look similar to the leaves of green onions and chives, but they are curved. They are the plant that grows out of the garlic bulb. Scapes have a fresh, mildly garlicky flavor and crisp texture. Once chopped, which is much easier than peeling and chopping the individual pieces of the garlic bulb, they can be added to salads raw, blended into a pesto or cooked with a stir fry or soup and can top any cooked whole grain. Current research supports garlic’s role in improving immune function and also cancer and heart disease prevention. They are a source for Vitamin C, iron and calcium .
While looking at the farmer’s market this week you will find strawberries too! Strawberries are high in fiber, Vitamin C and phytochemicals! Add them to your fruit salads, green salads, yogurt parfaits and eat them as a snack without the chocolate dip..sometimes!:)
LIFE IS: Having a Good Day
How many times a day to you hear “Have a good day”? Wishing each other a good day is a great practice and hopefully done with true intent. Typically the response to being wished a good day is: “You too.” I was telling my colleagues that my response is different. My go-to response has generally been: “I usually do.” I like to see the reaction to this. I get a lot of smiles and a few curious looks. My colleagues tell me that this response is selfish and I should be responding by the obligatory “you too”. I don’t see it that way; I want people to know that I enjoy life. My hope is that by my response they think of all the good things in their day and they can also respond “I usually do.” However, I don’t what to be selfish. So now when you tell me to have a good day you will usually hear, “I usually do and hope you do too!”
Dynamic Warm Up
Never lift cold. It’s tempting to, when you are in a hurry, to skip the warm-up and jump straight into a lifting work-out. However, the use of a dynamic warm-up is a safeguard against musculoskeletal injuries. This is due to an increase of blood flow to the skeletal muscles that are being used, which increases their temperature. With the increase in muscle temperature, the body is now ready to perform. Dynamic warm-ups are continues movements that prepares the muscles and joints for a specific activity by increasing body temperature, activating the nervous system, increasing range of motion.
Some movements for a dynamic warm-up may include:
- jumping jacks,
- lunges with a twist,
- high kicks,
- jump squats,
- skipping with low knees
The warm-up session should take anywhere from 5-20 minutes. The time varies depending on activity level, age, and objective. Arm yourself against musculoskeletal injuries.