Story by Jenna AndersonWith cold weather and snow, it’s time to get ready for the slopes – skiing, snowboarding, snowshoeing, snowmobiling, and more. With swamped weeks and packed weekends, when on Earth do you fit a workout in?
Here are some of best bodyweight exercises and different ways to apply them to your chosen sport in a super-efficient workout.
Push-Ups Wrists underneath shoulders no wider than shoulder width. Core tight, make these good by releasing chest to the floor. Just squeezing your shoulder blades or reaching your neck without actually getting the elbows to 90 degrees decreases the effectiveness of this exercise. MAKE IT EASIER: Knee push ups don’t help you build the hip strength needed for a full push-up. Inclines will. The higher the incline, the easier the push-up. Trainer Jenna Anderson demonstrates proper push-up form above.
Prisoner Squats Hands behind your head (don’t pull your head forward), feet at hip width (unless otherwise stated in the circuit), core tight, keep your gaze upward, and your knees back behind your toes. Elbows need to stay wide. Push your chest up and back into your hands. MAKE IT EASIER: Put your hands at your shoulders, or chest, or waist, or out in front of you. Easier yet, hold a door frame, counter, or pole.
Prisoner Get Up Keep your hands behind your head, right foot tucked behind your left knee, do a sit-up, roll over the knee coming to a low lunge (knee on the floor), drive through the heel of the left foot and stand up, keeping your knee behind your toes and heel on the floor. MAKE IT EASIER: Put your hands at your chest and/or use your hands to push yourself over your knee.
Power Burpee Hands to the floor, jump back for a plank (pause in plank), do four mountain climbers. Then, do a push-up (chest to the floor), explode upward landing in a low squat, and explode upward again in a tuck jump. MAKE IT EASIER: Do a negative push-up, meaning full body to the floor; use your knees to get up. Hop or step forward, and reach upward explosively ending on your toes, working toward a hop or jump.
Now, the programs. Each of these is designed to help with winter sports or recreation in a short amount of time, getting you outside doing the things you love more.
TABATA: The best for explosive activities like snow skating or snowmobiling where you have quick, strong bursts of explosive power with moments of rest. The trick to making Tabata efficient is not only staying with the scientifically proven interval range, but also making sure you go all out with every exercise, every time. Leaving a little in the bucket isn’t an option for successful Tabata. Do each exercise twice before moving onto the next. Work interval: 20 seconds. Rest interval: 10 seconds. Total of eight times. Add explosive power to your exercises, such as clapping push-ups or jump squats.
HUNDRED REP WORKOUT: Start with your first exercise and do it for 10 reps. Second exercise for 20 reps. Third exercise for 30 reps. Final exercise for 40 reps. This program is designed more for building muscle strength and endurance for your long, steady winter sports like snowshoeing and cross country skiing. You have two options with this – either change which exercise you start with each time you do the workout, or repeat the circuit four times changing the rep rotation.
1-2-3s: Think snowboarding and downhill skiing, where you need to have the endurance of moving through the snow, with occasional explosive movements (if you do some tricks). Start with one-minute intervals of each exercise making them as explosive as possible, moving through each exercise without rest. When you’ve finished all four exercises, recover for one minute. Then repeat going for two minutes and resting for two minutes. Finally, repeat for three minutes and rest for three minutes.
Jenna is a trainer and competitive physique athlete with a passion for yoga. She can usually be found at Flathead Health and Fitness in Kalispell teaching classes. She also offers personal training. Contact her at www.innerpowertraining.com.