Today's free workout is for those of you who are on the go, traveling her and there, or are without the means to get to the gym or have access to equipment: 365fitt Traveling Theraband Workout.
All you need is a theraband, approximately 5 feet in length. Therabands come in several different thicknesses for easier or harder resistance. They are often color-coded. I use a medium resistance band because I find I can often alter the resistance myself using my own body. I like the band, because when folded, it will fit into your back pocket, your purse, or an envelope. Hands down it is my favorite piece of equipment. You can typically by them for about $1 per foot. (If you need one, I can sell one to you for $1/foot plus $3 shipping and handling for $8. Just email me.)
So, pack your band and get ready for about a 30 minute workout of the legs and arms.
I've chosen these moves because they strengthen the joint. Why do we care about the joints? After all, you're trying to tone, right? Well, toning and strengthening the muscles and protecting the joints go hand in hand. Take the shoulder, for example. Just look at the diagram of the shoulder joint (a complex ball and socket joint that flexes, extends and rotates in all directions). There are numerous muscles that attach in a multitude of directions to different points on and surrounding the shoulder joint to keep it stable and allow it to move in all appropriate directions. By strengthening the muscles around the joint, you help "stabilize" the joint and prevent it from slipping out of place and/or wearing out prematurely.
On a personal note, my mother recently reported to me that she felt "off balance" and "weak in the knees", like her joint was "slipping" or something similar. What she was reporting was a lack of strength, primarily in the quadriceps muscles (thigh above the knee), hamstring (back of the thigh), adductor and abductor (inner and outer thigh/hip) and gastrocs (calf). All of these primary muscles help keep the knee in place. When the muscles surrounding and supporting the knee are properly strengthened and the knee joint is strong, a resulting improvement in balance is often seen.
So, train the joints for a lifetime of wellness. It should be noted that when you train the joint, train it in all directions: front/back and left/right. A well-rounded exercise routine should do that. In our free workout this week, our hip exercises focus on front, back, and sideways movement. Our arm exercises focus on bicep/tricep and front deltoid/back deltoid, to name just two. (In a few cases, over-zealous body builders have been reported overtraining certain "beauty" muscles like the pecs (chest) and biceps (known as the "guns"), resulting in an "imbalance" of muscle and joint problems. Not a pretty sight.)
Have fun and stay 365fitt even while traveling!