STRONG Idea: 12 Days of Fitness; Day 11

By Emily Stapleton on December 12, 2013 from Strong Ideas via

On the eleventh DAY OF FITNESS, my trainer gave to me
11 Full Body Sit-ups
10 Stance Jacks
9 Burpees
8 Spider Man Push-ups
7 Squat Jumps
6 Push-ups
5 Squats
4 Jumping Jacks
2-Floor to Ceilings and
A 1-minute plank.
This is the eleventh of a series of 12 posts designed to encourage you to meet the challenge of exercising for 12 consecutive days during the holiday season.  Need to start at the beginning? Click here.  Want to read more about the nature of the challenge? Click here.
Today’s exercise is the yoga inspired Full Body Sit-up.  Be sure to check out the video for a demo of this slow and controlled movement.  Start lying flat on your back with your arms extended by your ears.  Slowly sit up and reach toward (or beyond) your toes until you feel a stretch through the back of your legs.  Return to the starting position.
The full body sit-up uses every muscle in our abdominal area.  But beyond strengthening, it is a terrific stretching exercise.   Extending your arms by your ears in the lying position increases shoulder flexibility (the shoulders are commonly tight in mothers and anyone who spends time at a computer).  Reaching for the toes increases flexibility in the hamstrings, hips, and lower back.
Modification:  This exercise can take practice to perfect.  You may have to raise your hips a little to sit-up at first.  You may not be able to extend the arms completely or to reach the toes.  Simply reach as far as you can without causing pain.  With practice, your flexibility will improve.
Just Breath:  Continue to take 3 deep breaths at thee end of your workout and stop for a few deep breaths anytime you need to during the workout.  As we get closer to the end of this challenge and deeper into the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, you may be feeling the holiday stress.  Here’s today’s breathing homework:  anytime you start to feel stress throughout the day, stop and take 3 deep breaths.  You’re likely to be amazed at how much better you’re able to handle the situation.
Day 12 is tomorrow.  We’ll be putting it all together.
Emily Stapleton

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