Get Fit in 2017!

December 27, 2016 Elizabeth M. San Nicolas

Start 2017 right with this simple, full-body fitness routine from trainer Jason Davis at the International Sports Center in Hagåtña. Even if you spent most of last year on the couch, it’s never too late to begin taking better care of your health and well-being.

Warm up by jogging in place or doing jumping jacks for about 30 seconds. Jason says not to stretch cold muscles. Save light stretching for after your workout. Cool down with a walk on the treadmill for 5-10 minutes. 

No free weights at home? Try using water bottles or cans from the pantry. Keep your movements slow and controlled, and start lifting with a light weight. If gym equipment is too daunting or expensive, a resistance band is a price-friendly substitute. 

After a long inactivity, it’s not uncommon to get discouraged if the workout is too strenuous or leaves you in pain. So Jason advises to start easy, working out three times a week, and gradually increasing the challenge.

When you feel ready to take it to the next level, try a group fitness class or join a gym. Don’t be too intimidated to hire a personal trainer. They can help you meet your goals with a custom regimen, make sure you avoid injury by exercising safely, and keep you motivated to succeed. 

Here are some easy-to-do routines that are sure to help you become fit this new year.

Dumbbell Bicep Curl

Stand upright with arms down at your sides. Keep your elbows close to your body, palms facing forward. Keep your upper arms stationary and curl the weights up while contracting your biceps. Safety tip: Avoid swinging the weights. This movement should be slow and controlled. Start at a comfortable weight.

Dumbbell Lunges

Stand with the dumbbells at your side. Take a wide step forward with one leg. Then lower the opposite leg straight down until your knee almost touches the floor. Push off your heel and return to the starting position. Safety tip: Keep your torso straight and head up. Do not allow the knee on the front leg to pass your toes.

Seated Dumbbell Shoulder Press

Position dumbbells to each side of your shoulders with elbows below wrists. Press dumbbells upward until your arms are extended overhead. Lower back down until your elbows are parallel to the floor and repeat. Safety tip: Do not allow your elbows to go down past parallel.

Tricep Push Down

Stand upright with your torso slightly forward. Your elbows should be fixed at your sides. Bring the bar down until it touches the front of your thigh. Safety tip: Save your lower back some strain by keeping the weight light. You can also use a resistance band for this exercise.

Stability Ball Crunch

Begin with your feet flat on the floor. As you sit on the stability ball, roll until your lower back is resting on the ball. Place your hands behind your head. Exhale and squeeze your abdominals until you have raised your torso 3 to 5 inches. Inhale as you release and come back to the starting position. Safety tip: Try to keep your neck relaxed, your feet shoulder-width apart and firmly planted.

Plank Shoulder Tap

Get into a pushup position with your hands shoulder-width apart. Tighten your abdominals and squeeze your glutes to create a straight line from head to toe. Lift your right hand and tap your left shoulder. Return to the starting position and repeat with the other arm. Safety tip: Keep your feet wider that shoulder-width apart for more stability and keep your head facing down. The quicker you go from shoulder to shoulder, the easier the exercise will feel.

Lat Pull Down

Grab the bar with a wide grip, palms facing forward. Bring your torso slightly back, creating a curvature in your lower back. As you exhale, bring the bar down towards your upper chest. Concentrate on squeezing your shoulder blades together and slowly bring the bar back to the starting position. Safety tip: Avoid using explosive force while performing this exercise, and keep the motion slow and controlled. Avoid injury by keeping the weight light. 

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