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Archive for Sunday, May 2, 2004

Easy exercise at home

May 2, 2004

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Fitness expert Lori Dean provides tips on fun and effective ways to exercise at home.

Anyone can exercise at home. There are a variety of exercises that you can incorporate into your daily chore schedule or add to your morning, noon or nightly routine. It only takes a few more minutes a day and can add years to your life.

Work on upper-body strength while you carry the groceries. Try to get bags with handles at the grocery store. Before you put the groceries away, do some extra lifting for a half of a minute or so. These are deltoid raises for your shoulders and arms. Simply grab one bag with both hands, lift the bag up to your chin, and lower 10 to 12 times .

When you sit down to pay your bills, exercise your legs, hips and abdomen by taking 20 extra seconds and doing 10 squats. With your arms shoulder height and palms down in front of your body, lower your body, hips first, over the chair. Be careful not to let your torso fall too far forward or lean too far back. Your knees should fall in line with your toes, but try not to allow the knees to bow out. Just as you are about reach the chair, lift yourself back up, squeeze your hips together and begin again. Count off one second for the lift and one second for the lower.

Another version of this would be the Pile Squat, where you angle your feet out 45 degrees to incorporate more inner-thigh work.

Tricep dips are the easiest to do -- all you need is a chair. Lower your body off of the end of a secure chair, with your knees bent at a 90-degree angle, keeping your palms down and fingertips facing your body.

Push-ups are the easiest to do when you wake up and because you are working so many muscles at a time, it really gets your body going. Plus, it takes only seconds.

There are variety of pushups you can do. Depending on your fitness level and creativity, try these pushup variations: wall push-ups, bed push-ups, chair push-ups or floor push-ups. To do it properly, hold your abdominal muscles tightly, being sure to not let your abdomen drop, keep your head and neck in line with your spine, and make sure your feet or knees and hands are in a secure spot, so you don't slip.

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