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Monday, February 16, 2009

#16: Watch TV Get Fit

Watch TV Get Fit Do this workout three times a week for six weeks and you'll drop a dress size (without missing a single episode of CSI or The Ellen Show!). By Mars N Venus... Actually.

Sounds too good to be true, but it works! We got a workout that enables you to tone your body to perfection in the comfort of your own living room. And because watching your favorite program is an important part of this workout, you'll be distracted from any of the usual exercise discomfort. So now you can be slim and sexy (not to mention healthy!) without missing any of your favorite shows - this won't work if you scoff packets of chocolate biscuits in between, of course.

The Preparation Kit
Carefully study the TV guide for a 30-minute program you like. Just before it's about to start, put on some comfortable, loose clothes that you can move around in easily. Clear a space on the floor. Push the sofa away from the wall so that you can get behind it, and keep a pile of cushions nearby.

The Warm-Up Bit
When the TV show's intro music kicks in, start warming up. March briskly on the spot for 30 seconds.

The Stretching Bit
Stretch 1
In a standing position, take a deep breath and stretch up towards the ceiling with both arms, then exhale as you relax your arms down again. Repeat four times.

Stretch 2
Reach up towards the ceiling with one arm and slowly bend over sideways towards the side of the resting arm, until you feel a stretch through the side of your body. Repeat twice on each side.

Stretch 3
While keeping your upper body facing forward so you can see the screen, and your arms outstretched, walk your feet round to the right so the side faces the screen and you are twisting at the waist. Repeat four times, to the right and left.

Stretch 4
Keeping your legs straight, rise up and down on your toes, lifting your heels off the floor. Repeat 12 times.

Stretch 5
Circle your shoulders four times forwards and four times backwards. Do the same with your arms, windmilling them four times forwards and four times backwards.

The Work It, Work It, Work It Bit
You can follow this sequence of simple exercises and work your muscles without missing a dramatic twist or hilarious punchline. Try to do 20 repetitions of each exercise. If you can't imagine 20 when you first start doing these routines, do as many as you can and build up by one or two each time you do the workout. If you get carried away with the show's plot and forget to count, stop when your muscles ache or when two minutes have passed. As you get faster, try to do a circuit of these exercises before the ad break, then repeat them in the second half.

Slow Squats
Stand just in front of the sofa, legs slightly apart and feet pointing towards the TV and very slowly sit until your bottom just touches the seat (but before you put any weight on the cushion), the slowly stand up. Make sure your knees bend in line with your feet.

Bunny Hops
Start in the same position as for the push-ups. While pushing away from the sofa back, straighten your arms and jump, keeping hold of the sofa. As you land, bend both knees. Try to stay in the air as long as possible and land quietly.

Side bends
Lie on the floor on your side. Stretch your bottom out on the floor in front of you at a right angle to your body, and bend the underneath leg so it's at a right angle to your body, with your knee forward. Keep your top leg straight and put your top hand to your temple like a salute. Take a deep breath and, as you exhale, pull your tummy in, press down on the floor with the lower arm and curl up sideways at the waist, just a little. Breathe in and relax onto the floor. Remember to do the other side.

The Bit During The Ads
Grab a drink of water, stretch out a little and, if you're feeling energetic, run upstairs or jog on the spot. Stay moving and resist the temptation to flop on the couch.

The Bit Where You Go For The Burn
Do 10-1 repetitions of these moves.

Directory squat lifts
Start in a squat position (knees bent, back straight, leaning forward as if you're lowering yourself onto a chair). Hold two directories out in front of you. As you breathe out, stand up straight and raise the books over your head with straight arms. Try to make it all one smooth movement, so that everything happens together and the body feels stretched all the way from your toes up to your fingers. Caution: don't let your lower back arch as you straighten up. Breathe in and return to the beginning squat position.

Pelvic tilts
Lie down on the floor on your back, with a few cushions propped under your head so that you can still keep watching the TV. Take a deep breath and, as you exhale, pull the lower stomach towards the floor and tilt the pelvis (as if it is a bowl and you're tipping it towards your stomach). Hold for 10 seconds before you release.

The winding-down bit
Stretch out
As the credit rolls, streeeetch. Repeat the stretches from the start of the workout, holding each for 20 seconds, then add these stretches (remembering to do both legs).

Stretch 1
Stand, holding on to a stationary object for support, then grasp the ankle of one leg and bend the knee back, keeping the other leg bent slightly. Draw your heel towards your bum while keeping your hips forward - you will feel the thigh stretch.

Stretch 2
Sit down on the sofa and stretch one leg out straight in front of you. Stick your bottom out so your back arches, then lean forward until you feel the back of the leg stretching. Slowly flex the foot to take the stretch down to the calf.

Stretch 3
Stand up and link your hands behind you and pull them up to lift your chest up. Then bring your arms in front of you, link your hands and reach forward, rounding the upper back and dropping the head. Now grab a drink of water and relax - you deserve it!

Note: Push Ups
Make sure the sofa can't move if pushed, then stand behind it and rest your hands on the back, shoulder-width apart. Keep your arms straight. Take a step back, lift your heels off the floor and lean forwards so that your body weight is supported through your arms. While keeping your back perfectly straight and still, breathe in and bend your elbows to lower your chest towards the sofa back. Exhale as you straighten your arms and push yourself away.

Note: Crunches
You need to be near a coffee table or a foot rest for this one. Lie on your back and place the balls of your feet gently on the low surface, bending your knees slightly. With your arms reaching forwards, breathe out and curl your head and shoulders off the floor keeping a good grip on the coffee table or foot rest. Make sure you draw your chin into the chest as you curl up.



Made by Grumpy Cow