Use the Parks
Parks here in town offer lots of room and great structures to use in your workout. Let the kids play (or use them as added weight resistance), while you get in a functional and time-savvy workout! Set a timer on your phone for 30 seconds work, then 15 seconds rest and add some jams to keep you moving.
—Step ups: step up with the weight in your heel and squeeze buns at the top.
—Dips: Keep hands positioned tight to your rib cage, press up and lock elbows out at the top, bring it back down to a 90 degree angle at your elbow slowly.
—Butterfly kicks (abs): Sitting on the edge of the bench, hang both legs out in front, balancing and keeping abs tight. Using your hands on each side for balance, kick feet six inches in a scissors motion. Get creative and go horizontal, vertical, or try writing words with your toes pointed, holding the same position.
—Elevated push-ups: find a structure to place hands a little wider than shoulder width apart, feet hip width (challenge yourself with one foot raised). Lower your body until your chest touches the structure and then press up.
—Lunges: in the reverse lunge position, set rear foot on the swing and press hips back into a reverse lunge until the front knee is bent at 90 degrees. Keep weight in your heels —keeping your knee lined up with your big toe — all the way up on front foot and squeeze buns at the top.
—Planks: either set both elbows or both hands onto the swing and find your balance. Keep your feet close and hold your abs tight. You want your back as flat as possible and shoulders engaged. Keep hips tucked and bellybutton in tight towards the spine. Hold that position. Switch it up by doing a side plank with one arm or one elbow on the swing or on the ground for more stabilization.
—Pull-up variations – start at the bottom with arms fully extended; the angle of bar to torso will determine resistance and which muscle group you use. Switch it up with many different pulls: wide grip, chin up, close grip. Pull your body up towards the bar and slowly bring it back down to extended position. This slow eccentric movement (bringing back down) will build strength for your pull-ups! Do as many rounds as time allows. Any time working out in is better than no time working out in. 15 minutes is better than zero. Work with what you have.
Utilize stairs around campus
If you want a quick and efficient cardio work out, hit the stairs (there are a lot of options around and on campus!) Set your timer for an allotted time and keep moving until you hear that buzzer. If you want to switch it up, here are some ideas.
—Walk every stair, 10 jump squats at the top, walk down
—Walk every other stair, 10 curtsy lunges at top, walk down
—Run stairs,10 body weight squats at the top, walk down
As a mom of three and an ever-changing schedule, I know first hand how it’s important to look for opportunities to work out. Often it’s most time efficient to fit exercise in with things you’re already doing.
Going to the park? Do a workout like this. Utilize those 20 minute gaps between pick up, drop off and other tasks.
Train yourself to look for opportunities. Coupling that with nutritious food choices adds up!