I haven't joined an actual gym in ages. Everything I need to keep in good training shape can be done at home or out around town using whatever the landscape gives me. Lately, I love to alternate between yoga in a studio and high intensity interval training with easy accessories to keep on-hand like a medicine ball. The balance and strength I build in yoga helps with the focus interval training requires. Also, because I've always trained in an interval capacity from an early age my muscles have great memory and respond well to this type of training. It's all about knowing what works for my body then switching it up adding in different challenges and different activities. Here are a few quick training exercises to easily add in with a medicine ball. There's a great park in New Orleans that has concrete slabs all scattered across and it's the most ideal area to train. You can see how I incorporate the landscape into some of the exercises.
Plank balance with medicine ball + one arm push-up
- We all know the benefits of holding a plank pose to build core and arm strength but adding in a balance challenge to it engages the smaller muscles in the arms that aren't worked out as often. The muscles responsible for the shaking feeling you get while your'e doing it are the ones that will help build arm definition. My arms are notoriously hard to keep muscle tone so I do things like this often. I prefer a crop legging for most training. During plank or any inverted pose it's important to have something on that stays put and adds slight compression. These are EXP Core and mold so well to the body. Comfort is key.
- When I use the ball to do side to side crunches I also then raise the ball above my head and work my triceps. It's as easy as lowering the ball up and down your back isolating those muscles. I usually do about 5-8 reps in between ab exercises. The strappy tank is a great layering piece to show off the back and arms. It's a nice update to a typical racerback tank, especially going from training to lifestyle.
- Such an easy update to the normal lunge. Adding a twist over the front bent leg really engages the core. This can be done static or walking lunge depending on how much space I have or if I want to engage my core a little more by adding the walking component. You'll be hard pressed to find something that shapes the butt like a set of lunges. Trust.
Overhead Chopping Swing
- Start with legs hip distance apart, legs slightly bent. Swing the medicine ball down to the right and sweep up overhead to the left and repeat. The explosive movement of the chop fires up the quads and glutes while also stretching the side body and engaging the core.