Ok…I’ve basically have had it. I am officially on the quest to get back and stick to a healthy life style. For a while I am able to stay on a routine, then something comes up and throws it all out of whack. Then the challenge starts all over again. So it is time to make a change. Break bad habits, re-establish healthy ones and start new ones. Thirty days is the perfect amount of time accomplish this goal. Today I start my personal 30 day F.I.T. Boot Camp. I look forward to sharing with you my journey as there is a lot I have set out to do over the next 30 days.
Spring is around the corner. Yes I am hopeful. I am determined to get into the best shape of my life. I have accomplish this a few times already in my life but as I get older it becomes not only more of challenge but more important. Four years ago I was on my game, working out everyday doing Pilates, Barre 2-3 times a week along with a weekly boot camp workout. Some days I would pull a double with a 30-40 jog in the evening. I was living in Florida at the time and a tropical life style is very motivating. Living close to the beach and wearing summer clothes most of the year, just motivates you to stay in shape. Since I moved back to Michigan, I got married and had a baby. I had the roll of taking care of my family but lost sight of taking care of me. Major life changes can cause one to “rearrange” so to speak, our daily routine. Now as I move forward with my own personal challenge I hope you will be inspired.
This exercise is another stretch for the spine and a continuation of Spine Stretch Forward that includes rotation of the spine.
Saw Setup – Reach Out
From Corkscrew roll up or rock up to a seated position.
- Open legs as wide as the mat with feet flexed
- Sit up tall with active arms in a “T” position – keeping finger tips in the peripheral
- Palms face the floor
- Inhale twist the spine in one direction
- Exhale reach pinky finger towards opposite pinky toe
- Reach back arm in the mid-line – palm faces back
Saw – Twist Reach
- Pulse pinky finger three times past pinky toe – “saw off pinky toe with pinky finger”
- Inhale sit up tall and exhale back to center
- Switch sides
Lengthen spine in the center, bring legs together and roll back on the mat
Saw is a great exercise to focus on opposition – energy reach out in different directions. For example, lengthen the spine by pulling your abs “in and up”. Reach your tailbone to the floor and the crown of your head reaches for the clouds. Your arms are long and active through the fingertips as the shoulder anchor towards your mid-line. Rotate from the Powerhouse as your hips are “anchored’ to the mat. Grow taller each time you come return to center – work the opposition.
If you have tight hamstrings, sit elevated with soft or slightly bend the knees. This exercise is not recommended for individuals with osteoporosis or other bone density conditions and is not suitable for those with neck issues.
Previous exercise – Open Leg Rocker
The stationary handrail commonly utilized for ballet warm-up exercises was initially for the dancers themselves. Over the past few years an exercise craze using this common dance fixture has exploded into one of the hottest workouts being added to Pilates Studios and elite fitness centers around the world. Today, Barre is toning, tightening, chiseling bodies and changing lives. The evolutionary journey of this workout is a unique story in itself.
Barre as is it commonly referred to was an exercise method developed in the late 1940’s by Lotte Berk. The famous European dancer was severely injured in a car accident that left her to rely on a wheelchair. The determined dancer rehabilitated herself by developing her own exercise method based on her formal dance training. She made a full recovery by focusing on strength and flexibility in the hips, pelvis, abdominals and lower back, commonly referred to in Pilates at the Powerhouse. With her new formulated exercise method for rehabilitation, Lotte berk began teaching her work to others out of her London studio.
In 1969, Lydia Bach a physically fit American began taking Lotte’s classes. Lydia had a hard time completing the movements but was amazed by the workout. She decided to study under Lotte for a year. Returning to the United States in 1970 Lydia purchased rights to the Lotte Berk name and technique. She combined the work with her own knowledge of dance and yoga to open the first Lotte Berk Method Studio in Manhattan. There this core focused, strengthening, cardio method which transformed bodies all in one workout was born.
Today, Barre can be found perfectly integrated with Pilates. The unique similarities of controlled movements which result in elongated muscles. The flow and precision of each exercise becomes a focus on the individuals mind body connection.
Have you tried a Barre class?