Healthy Balance Challenge & Giveaway
Get Fit & Win!
Happy New Year! With a new year comes new challenges and goals. If you are looking to become more fit and active in 2016, we have just the challenge for you! To begin seeing change in your body you must start by changing your daily routine. Every day for the month of January, we will post a new daily fitness challenge (click to view calendar). Throughout the month the challenges will gradually increase to continue pushing you each week. Every day you can enter our Healthy Balance Challenge by posting a photo of yourself doing our daily challenge on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram, using the hashtag #HBChallenge. We will be giving away $2,000 worth of prizes! One winner will be randomly chosen every day for the month of January to receive 16 FREE juice coupons and Old Orchard apparel.
Starting a new fitness routine can be difficult, especially trying to fit it into an already busy schedule. The best thing about this challenge is the flexibility. All of the daily challenges can be done right in your very own home, no club membership required, and on your own time! Starting with just a few minutes a day can be a great way to form a new healthy habit. Working out with a buddy can also be very helpful. Pushing one another and encouraging one another each day. The best way to enjoy exercising is switching it up. Doing the same exercises over and over can get old, take our suggestions and run with them. Get creative and don't be afraid to try new exercises. Throughout the month be sure to stay hydrated, drink plenty of water, and don’t be ashamed to take breaks or break up an activity into smaller sets. Remember that with any new fitness routine, it’s a good idea to check with your physician before becoming more active.
For an extra challenge try making each day cumulative. For example: On Sunday do Push-ups; on Monday do Crunches and Push-ups; on Tuesday do Squats, Crunches, and Push-ups, etc.
Our daily exercise challenges are comprised of 7 different exercises. Be sure you follow the proper technique for each to avoid injury and maximize impact! Here are a few tips for each of the activities.
Start by performing them against the wall, then move to the floor on your knees and finally, when you are strong enough, full military-style push-ups on your toes:
1. Lie chest-down, palms flat on the floor hands at shoulder level, a tad more than shoulder-width apart. Keep your legs straight, feet together and toes tucked under your feet.
2. Focus your gaze ahead, not at the floor. Your chin will touch the floor on the down-stroke, not your nose.
3. Going up: Straighten your arms as you push your body up. Keep your palms fixed and your body straight. Avoid bending or arching the back. Exhale on the way up. Pause.
4. Going down: Bend your arms to lower your body till your chest touches the floor by bending your arms. Keep your palms fixed, body straight, knees up and feet together. Inhale on the way down. Pause.
5. Repeat, if you can! Make push-ups a part of your daily routine. Increase the number you do as your muscles become stronger.
Start by lying on the floor and ‘curling’ your head and shoulders off the floor. Remember not to pull on your neck as you lift off the ground. There are all sorts of variations on this exercise. Here are two to try:
BICYCLE: Lie face up on a mat. Place hands behind your head (without pulling on your neck). Bend knees so that they are at a 90 degree angle directly above your hips. Begin by alternately touching your right elbow to your left knee in a ‘crunch’ position and repeat on the opposite side. Remember to exhale as you touch knees to elbows.
V-SIT with a twist: Begin by sitting on the floor with your knees bent at 90 degrees and your heels pressed in to the mat (so that your body makes the shape of a V). Maintain alignment with your spine so that there is a straight line from the top of your head to your tailbone. Extend your hands out in front of you over your bent knees. Rotate your torso as far as possible to the right while still maintaining spinal alignment, now rotate as far left as possible, then return to the start position.
The squat is essentially the movement that you perform several times a day when moving from a standing position to a seated position and back. Here are a few basic tips to get you on the right track:
• Sit on the edge of your chair with your feet hip-width apart.
• Adjust your seat so that your thighs are parallel to the ground.
• Tighten your abdominals (stomach) and your glutes (butt) and with the majority of your weight in your heels (not your toes!) move from a seated position to a standing position.
• Without holding on to the chair or the tops of your thighs, begin by bending at the hips to lower your butt to the seat’s edge.
• When you have perfected this, take a step away from the chair and do the exercise without the aid of the chair.
Variation: Sumo Squat
Stand with feet wider than hip-width apart and your toes pointed slightly outward. Lower hips and butt toward the ground as you keep your spine straight. Press through the heels as you return to a standing position.
Stand in front of a chair, with your back to it. Place your hands on the edge of the chair and slowly lower your bottom toward the ground, making sure to keep your shoulder blades retracted (pulled down away from your ears) and your back straight. This exercise is designed to work the triceps and can be made more difficult by extending your legs straight out in front of you.
This core exercise is ideal for anyone who wants to gain strength in their core and provide stability for more challenging exercises.
Beginner: Begin on elbows and knees with a straight spine. Lift hips from the ground and hold.
Intermediate: Begin on elbows and toes with a straight spine. Lift hips from the ground while maintaining a straight line from your ear-shoulder-hips-knees-ankles.
Advanced: Same exercise as intermediate, but lift a heel toward the sky while maintaining hip stability. Lift 5-10x and repeat on the other side.
Here are a few variations on lunges to work on those legs!
Reverse lunges ~ keep your abdominals contracted as you alternate your legs and step back.
Single-Leg Lunge ~ Stand facing away from a bench or low stool about 18-24 inches. Balance on your right foot as you support your left foot on the bench behind you. Align your hips so that they remain in a straight line as you bend both knees and hips to lower your right knee toward the ground. Switch legs and repeat.
Side lunges ~ step out to the right side and sit your bottom down and back, repeat several times and then switch to your left leg.Login to Favorite