You’ve been working toward walking 10,000 or more steps each day since Week 3 of the diet. Now it’s time to step up your exercise efforts! This week spark your motivation by signing up for an exercise class that meets regularly or a local walk/run. Getting active with other like-minded exercise enthusiasts in classes or at community events can add excitement to your fitness routine. Find classes that interest you by asking friends and neighbors for suggestions and looking online for gym and YMCA schedules. Community events are posted at sports and running stores and on websites such as Map My Run.
This week you also start strength training the old-fashioned way. That means you use your own body weight—not expensive equipment—to challenge your muscles. The exercises below target total body strength. To start, do one set of 8 repetitions for each exercise. Gradually work your way up to repeat the whole exercise series for a second set of 8 reps. Do this Real Strength program at least twice per week:
- Total body: Sprinters
- Abdomen: Sit-ups
- Butt and hips: Bridge
- Shoulders: Snow angels
- Chest and arms: Bent-knee push-ups
- Back: Cobra
- Lower body: Forward lunge
- Total body: Downward-facing dog
NOTE: As with any new exercise program, discuss with your doctor before starting.
THIS WEEK'S ASSIGNMENT: In addition to your step log, this week sign up for a weekly exercise class or community race and start doing the Real Strength exercises two or three times per week. (Don’t forget to keep your focus on real foods, eating three 400-calorie meals and two 150-calorie snacks a day.)