Turn Your Walk into a Workout

The most commonly cited obstacle to regular exercise is lack of time. Factoring in preparation, travel, and shower time, even a 45-minute or 1 hour class can easily take a couple hours out of your day. Not to mention the financial and logistical issues of paying for the class, covering travel expenses, and figuring out childcare.

But most people would agree they have time for a 20-30 minute walk – whether around your neighborhood or a nearby park.

And if you’re already going for a walk, why not take the opportunity to get a full-body workout in?

Below I’ve outlined a four-circuit program that can be completed anywhere, with no equipment needed. Each exercise group has a corresponding video (linked to Youtube). The videos have been sped up for faster viewing, but the more slowly you can do each exercise, the better!

Each individual exercise should be repeated about 8-10 times, and try to complete at least two rounds of the entire circuit.  I like to walk for a few minutes in between workouts to get some cardio in and allow for muscle recovery.


Workout 1 (focused on legs and core): Planks around the world

Starting in standard plank position with hands stacked below shoulders (option to come onto knees), raise one leg at a time, trying to keep hips level.

Screen Shot 2015-12-16 at 11.00.05

Rotate to one side, coming into side plank. Raise one leg at a time, or draw circles with your raised leg for an added challenge.

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Rotate onto your back, into a reverse plank position. This can also be done with bent knees in a reverse tabletop position if straightening the legs is uncomfortable or inaccessible. Lift one leg at a time, engaging the core to keep your hips as level as possible.

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Rotate onto the other side to finish with a final round of side plank leg lifts. Screen Shot 2015-12-16 at 11.01.18

 


Workout 2 (focused on chest, shoulders, and arms): Pushup Variations

Starting with tricep/chaturanga pushups, bring hands shoulder-width apart and lower down tracking elbows along your sides. Instead of lowering all the way down, try to only lower halfway. Press up keeping your back in a straight line, avoiding collapsing in the upper back. Also try to keep your neck straight (which I did a poor job of 🙂 ).

Screen Shot 2015-12-16 at 11.02.34

Bringing knees to the ground, do a round of one-legged pushups, raising one leg at a time as you lower toward the ground.

Screen Shot 2015-12-16 at 11.02.54

Finish by pressing back up to plank, spreading the fingers wide, and doing a round of chest push-ups with your elbows tracking away from the body.

Screen Shot 2015-12-16 at 11.03.26


Workout 3 (focused on core, legs, glutes): Balancing Acts and Squats

Begin in mountain pose, standing with feet hips-width apart. Shifting the weight to one leg, raise your other leg off the ground with a bent knee until your thigh is parallel to the ground.

Screen Shot 2015-12-16 at 11.07.25

From this one-legged mountain pose, shift the upper body forward while simultaneously extending your raised leg behind you into warrior 3/balancing stick pose. Slowly return to your one-legged mountain pose.

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After a few rounds, return to one-legged mountain and begin lowering down into a one-legged squat.

Screen Shot 2015-12-16 at 11.04.48

Screen Shot 2015-12-16 at 11.06.47

You can keep your raised leg bent as I did, or straighten it for a pistol squat.


Workout 4 (focused on legs and glutes)Crescent Lunge Dips

Begin in a high/crescent lunge position.

Screen Shot 2015-12-16 at 10.59.04

Slowly lower your back knee closer to the ground, then press back up. After completing one side, shift your weight toward your front foot and try to step your back foot forward in one clean step (option to move through one-legged tadasana). Step your other foot back and repeat on the second side.

Screen Shot 2015-12-16 at 10.59.20


 

This circuit will provide you with a full-body workout at no cost! You might consider bringing gloves for the pushups and planks if you don’t want to place your hands on the ground, but otherwise zero equipment is needed.

So get outside, get moving, and stay healthy this holiday season!

 

As always, thanks for reading,

JF

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