(An A to Z Challenge entry)
Decided to get an earlier start today. I was worried about my “P” initially because I kinda sorta stopped my pre-planning for A to Z around L — so for the past several days, I have been finding exercises the day of. But thankfully upon researching earlier, I came across a plethora of possibilities. (How’s that for alliteration…eh?)
Without further ado, a drum roll, please. My “P” performance included: Palms up and palms down dumbbell wrist curls, pelvic tilt into bridge, peroneals-smr, piriformus-smr, plank, and punches.
Palms up and palms down dumbbell wrist curls
Wrist curls are harder than I thought they would be. I didn’t realize how much I used my forearms for lifting items. To do these, you sit in a chair and either use a bench or your legs to rest your forearms. Then you either have your palms up or palms down with dumbbells in hand. Using ONLY your wrists you lift the dumbbells, being sure that your forearms remain on the bench or your legs.
Since I don’t own an exercise bench, I used my legs. Here are images of both palms up and palms down, respectively:
Overall I really liked these regardless of how hard they were!
Pelvic tilt into bridge
To do this pelvic tilt exercise, the key is to lift slowly. As the instructions indicate:
The first few times, I did not focus enough attention to only lifting my tail bone, sucking in my stomach and holding it so I did not feel the fabulous lower back stretch. And then I remembered a trick I learned in that strength and balance class I have referenced before. When you need to concentrate on a specific body part or muscle, pretend and visualize that you have a string attached to the exact part you need to focus on. Then imagine that string being pulled up. If you are focusing your attention to the right spot, then you will almost “feel” that string tug on that specific muscle. So I imagined a string was attached to my tailbone, slowing be pulled up toward the ceiling — and man, I felt the stretch then! Then slowly I would raise the rest of my back, vertebrae by vertebrae until all the way to my neck, hold it, and then lower my back down the same way.
Once I was able to concentrate and focus on my core muscles, I realized how great of an exercise this is!
I was glad to see that the peroneals-smr was stretching my calves. My calves, especially my left one, are aways so tight/tense. This takes a bit of coordination and balance, but I quickly realized can be modified fairly easily and can still get the same effect.
The piriformus-smr basically works your glutes, aka butt. To be honest, I don’t know about this one. I feel like a massage or another glute stretch may relieve tense muscles better. I would be willing to try it again, though.
I have never been a fan of the plank, but I am doing “P” and know how good it is for your core muscles. I am not strong enough to do a full plank at the feet, so I modified it to my knees. I could still barely hold it but did my best — increased my time a little bit by the second time I did it, despite how badly my body shook! Hey, at least I tried. It is “P” after all.
As I was researching, I saw punches come up and I hardly need a reason to bring out my Rompe boxing moves. I punched my way through this song twice as a nice way to get my heart rate up amidst all of today’s strength building exercises!
I was glad to bring a favorite exercise into this mix especially if I forced myself to do the plank. Though I must say those wrist curls were a great new discovery and highlight of tonight’s routine.
Health point challenge: Success!
Have you ever done wrist curls before? Have you ever heard of the string technique as a way to focus on muscles? If not, do you have a technique you use to do so?