Monday, July 9, 2012

Break your Back Workout

So I just have to say, I don't think I have ever targeted my back quite like this before. I have been sore for days! While I was going through the routine I kept thinking I was going to have to find something a little more challenging for me, but I was wrong. The hubby says you don't feel a back workout until the next day. I can attest to that. It is the truth! So even if it doesn't feel like a butt-kicker, you will have to trust me, it is.

Back Rows - 20 reps

Y-T-I - 20 reps of each position

Dead Lifts - 20 reps

2-3 rounds

Complicated isn't it?

Exercise explanations:

Back Row:
Standing with knees slightly bent and leaning forward, pull weight up to your lower chest (imagine squeezing your shoulder blades together) and back down. I find it easiest to use dumbbells but a barbell will work too. 

This exercise is amazing!! It may not feel challenging while you are doing it, but you will feel it in the morning! 
Lay flat on your stomach. Extend your arms out in front of you so that your body makes the "Y" shape. Keep your hands open with palms facing each other. Without lifting your body off the ground, lift your arms as high as you can, without bending your elbows. Add light weight if desired. I would recommend going through the entire workout once with no weights and see how you feel the next day. If you are not very sore, add weights.
Repeat the motion with your arms extended to each side so that your body forms the "T' shape.
Repeat the motion with your arms extended straight out in front of you so that your body forms the "I" shape.
This can be preformed on a balance (yoga) ball. Be sure not to drop your arms any lower than parallel to the floor. 

Dead Lifts:
Standing in front of your barbell (or dumbbells) Bend at the knees and lean forward, keeping your back straight the entire exercise. Grasp the barbell with a shoulder width grip. Straighten your knees and your torso simultaneously until you are standing straight up (with knees slightly bent). Reverse the movement until the weight is almost touching the floor.
Caution: this is a safe exercise when using the proper form. If you have back problems, substitute for more back rows. If you are still learning form, use less weight than you think you can lift. ALWAYS keep your back straight.

Working out your back has so many benefits. Especially for women. As you work out your muscles your body intuitively knows to strengthen your bones, which will fight against osteoporosis and help keep you from getting the 'hump' on your back. My grandmother and my mother both have this. They have always told me it was from not standing up straight, but we know better than that now. Knowing is half the battle and I am grateful that I know at such a young age. I can be actively preventing this for years!!

If you need further explanation of this please let me know! I will be happy to post pictures/videos of explanations.

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