52 CAN-DOs Tip #2: Look at everyday activities as your fitness center

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Let’s face it, we’re all busy. Despite the temptation to throw hands up in the air and declare “I just don’t have time to exercise!” I’m here to remind you friends, YEP YOU DO!   God has already gifted us with the creativity and resourcefulness we need to accomplish anything of our choosing; and that includes making the time to healthfully restore our bodies. 

Here are 3 of my favorite “Can Do” fitness strategies that require very little time, effort and absolutely no expense. 

Strategy 1 - Ain’t No Mountain High Enough

Climb stairs and walk the escalators instead of riding to your destination. Consider the 125th street train station in Harlem. If you are physically able, forget the elevator, take the stairs. You can exit the train or bus 1 stop before you’re scheduled and walk the rest of the way. Plus, the fresh air and sunshine helps replenish vitamin D, one of the most important nutrients for the body. If mobility is an issue for whatever reason, and you’re unable to walk far or climb stairs, the next tip is definitely for you.

Strategy 2: A leg above the rest - Leg extensions and rotations  

Place both feet squarely on the floor, grip your hands firmly on the sides of your chair.  Make sure your chair is strong and stable (no wheels!) Contract your core and keep your back as straight as possible. 

A.  Extend your right leg straight out in front of you so that your leg is in parallel position to the floor. Lift up as high as you can and bring back to parallel position for 8-12 reps. Repeat the same on the left leg. Alternate for 2 sets of 8-12 reps on each leg. 

B.  Extend your right leg forward, then flex leg and rotate as if peddling with one leg on a bicycle. Alternate right and left legs for 2 sets of 8-12 reps. 

C. Place feet squarely on the floor. Contract (pull in as you exhale) your abdominal muscles. Simultaneously, squeeze your glutes (buttocks) together as tightly as you can and hold for 8 seconds.
Repeat 8 times.
Approximate Exercise Time: 3-4 minutes.
Repeat A – C (2-3 sets per day).    
In about 3 weeks, feel and see the results for yourself!

Strategy 3: “Michelle’s Arms”:

This is an excerpt from an exercise step I developed and named after First Lady Michelle Obama’s amazing arm featured in my book, Bed Aerobics Fitness Flow. This exercise tones the arms, upper back, and shoulders. Repeat each exercise for 15 reps. Best of all this is a great exercise to do while watching your favorite television show.

A.  Stretch your arms out horizontally so that your palms face the floor. Maintain a slight bend to the elbow as you lift your arms up toward the ceiling and back down to parallel position; your arms should resemble a bird flapping its wings. 

B.  Starting from parallel arms, turn your hands so that your palms face the wall behind you. Now, pump your arms up and down with your palms facing the wall behind you. This is the first set. 
There is a 30 rest in between each set). Approximate Exercise
Time: 3 minutes. Repeat A and B for 4 sets of 15 reps.

Remember, that with a little creativity and resourcefulness, you’ll discover you have more time to get fit than you ever thought possible!