I put together my top 10 favorite exercises from the LiveFit trainer program in picture form for ya! Some are exercises that I’ve done in the past that I find effective, and others are knew-to-me ones that I now add in my workouts time to time. Also, some are how I modify what we are supposed to do, either because my gym didn’t have certain equipment or simply because I’d rather do it differently 🙂
single leg barbell squat:: I used the squat rack to complete these, and as much as I love doing the traditional squats here, the single-leg exercise made it challenging, especially on my left side. Ever since my left knee surgery 5ish years ago, my left side has always been just a tad weaker. And it showed with this exercise! I had difficult correcting my form (keep those hips square!), and I couldn’t squat as low (with good of form) as I could on the right. I found this to be an important exercise to continue. Gotta even this bod out!
1. single leg barbell squat
pull-ups:: Homegirl can’t do pull-ups just yet (although I finally mastered a chin-up!) so I modified by using a bench. I tried to push through my feet as little as possible so that it was mostly my upper body lifting me. Don’t be fooled- it’s still pretty tough! If you can’t do a pull-up, I challenge you to give this a go!
seated bent over rear delt raise:: I don’t believe I had ever done this exercise before. It works the back of your shoulders, and it’s done in kind of a relaxing pose! The last few reps were always tough ones.
3. seated bent over rear delt raise
seated calf raise:: The demo online shows that you are to use a machine for this exercise, with the resistance coming from your lap. Unfortunately, my small gym has no such machine, and since you had to complete a surprising number of calf raises throughout the program, I decided I shouldn’t just skip it every time it popped up. I started out with placing heavy dumbbells in my lap to do these, but during a cruel chair pose during a yoga class, I realized I should try doing calf raises while in chair pose, to add a balancing element in there.
4. seated calf raise
incline dumbbell curl:: Love me some dumbbell bicep curls, and this was a new-to-me, challenging way to perform them. You’re curling through a greater range and it also eliminates you using your shoulders as you typically do in standing. I can’t lift as heavy in this inclined position as I can in standing, so it’s something to continue working at.
5. incline dumbbell curl
plie dumbbell squat:: These left my inner thighs oh-so-freakin-sore! Grab a heavy dumbbell, hang it low, get your stance wide with toes out (like in a plie in ballet of course) and squat it like its hot. You’re welcome for an awkward soreness tomorrow 🙂
6. plie dumbbell squat
skullcrushers:: It’s exactly how it sounds, and there were multiple times I came close to acting out the name. Good thing Ryan was spotting me 😉 This exercise works the triceps… I found there are lots of ways to target the back of your arms, and this one became my favorite.
superset: upright dumbell rows + dumbbell military press:: Beginning in Phase 2, supersets were introduced. These are 2 exercises completed subsequently with no rest (or very little) in between. You complete one set of an exercise (i.e. 10 rows) then one set of the next (10 presses), rest, then repeating that combo again! I found the transition from an upright dumbbell row to an overhead shoulder move to flow very well, making this my favorite superset!
upright dumbbell row
exercise ball pull in:: I always forget about the ol’ stability ball, and when I bust it out again, I remember all the great things it can do for ya- especially the core! This is a pretty basic exercise, but can burn if you focus on it just right. Starting in plank position with ball just beneath feet, use your abs to roll the ball in close to your chest. Slowly roll back out and repeat. If you want to be an overachiever, when the ball is rolled back out in plank, do a push up!
9. exercise ball pull-in
treadmill sprints: 30 sec on/30 sec off:: I’ve always used the treadmill for one thing and one thing only–> avoid the Florida heat and bust out some easy miles at the same old pace staring at my reflection in the mirror. It’s zombie like. And I kinda love it SHH. But discovering Jamie’s little sprint sesh she orders on her program- I’ve found a great way to challenge myself on the tready. I usually start out with 2-3 mins warm up at a moderate pace, before increasing to more of a sprint and beginning my 30 sec on, 30 sec off the treadmill. WARNING: don’t fall off the belt and smack your face and die. Bear weight through your arms while hopping to the side, and same when getting back on. In fact, my first few strides during the “30 sec on” I’m putting a lot of weight through my arms before letting go and sprinting my lil heart out. How much I push myself, for measure: my 5k pace is 8:30ish (minutes per mile) and my “30 sec on” I aim for 7-7:15 pace. I’m able to do the on/off combo for the 25-30 mins without a sweat. Ok, that’s a lie, I sweat an ocean, but it’s definitely doable 🙂
HAHAA.. my “you got the one of me standing on the sides, right??!” face. Big thanks to Ryan and the 2 other people in the gym that pretended not to watch pics being taken of me doing one rep of each exercise. #ITSFORTHEBLOG
10. treadmill sprints
Are any of the above exercises ones you’ve done? Learn a new one?
How do you modify a basic exercise to meet your needs?!