At lunch, your co-workers are talking about this fun barre class they went to over the weekend. When you meet up with your friend for coffee, they talk about this awesome new workout guide they started. And your crazy ‘go to the gym 7 days a week’ friend can’t stop talking about all the gains she’s making from lifting weights.
Whew! Everyone is doing something different and you’re probably thinking “What’s going to work best for me?”
Getting healthy and fit can be very overwhelming. The best thing you can do, is try a little bit of everything and pick which one you enjoy the most. Along your journey, what you enjoy will probably change as you discover you want to challenge yourself in new ways.
If you’re just starting your fitness journey or have hit a plateau, a great place to start is with resistance bands. You can increase your strength, mobility, stability, flexibility, and cardiovascular and muscular endurance with them! Doing exercises with resistance bands is a great intro to doing movements in a safe manner before jumping into weights. If you already lift weights, using bands will challenge your muscles differently.
I love circuit training and adding exercises with resistance bands at the end of my lifting sessions to exhaust my muscles to failure and really feel the burn. While any circuit can be done with just your body-weight, I like to add a challenge with some resistance I want to share a full body workout that will leave your limbs feeling like noodles and make you feel like you’re standing in a puddle of sweat.
- There are 3 circuits of 3 exercises
- Do 12 – 15 reps of each exercise of Circuit #1 (Repeat 3x)
- NO REST between each set of that circuit
- Once you complete Circuit #1, rest for 30 seconds
- Move on to Circuit #2 and #3 doing the same thing
|Exercise #1||Exercise #2||Exercise #3|
|Circuit #1||Bicep Curl||Side Raise||Donkey Kick|
|Circuit #2||Squat Press||Triceps Extension||Standing Chest Press|
|Circuit #3||Squat Jump / Row||Bent Over Fly||Upright Row|
HOW TO DO EACH EXERCISE!
Place band under your feet and hold one handle in each hand. You can either curl one arm at a time, or both together. Your preference!
Place band under your feet and hold one handle in each hand. Have a slight bend in your knees and lift each arm outwards to shoulder height (do not go higher)
If you’re kicking with your right foot, hold on to the handle with your left hand. Place your right foot in the other handle and secure. Adjust and hold on to any additional slack with your left hand for the appropriate resistance. Keep left hand (and any slack) secure on the ground and kick with your right foot. SQUEEZE the glutes at the top! Switch and repeat with your other leg.
Place band under your feet, hold one handle in each hand, and hold at shoulder height. Squat down (go low!), then press through your heels to come up. As you come up, do a shoulder press by pushing your hands above your head. The come all the way back down to a squat and repeat.
Place band under your feet and give a little more slack to the side you’re doing the extension. Keep left hand at your side and raise right hand above and behind your head. Keep right elbow pointing straight up, then extend arm straight up, and squeeze at the top. Switch and repeat with your other arm.
Standing Chest Press
Loop band around a stable point. Grab handle in each hand and place each hand at your sides. Make sure to find a stable stance with your feet. Then push both hands forward – use same motion as if you were laying down on a bench.
Squat Jump / Row
Loop band around a stable point. Grab handle in each hand out in front of you and squat down. As you come up, jump! (yes, a squat jump) As you come up, pull bands back in a rowing motion. This exercise works both your legs and your back (and your coordination!!)
Bent Over Fly
Place band under your feet, cross bands and hold in each hand (so that it looks like an X) Put a slight bend in your knees and bend over with a straight back. Pull arms out to your sides and squeeze at the top. You will be using your upper back muscles for this movement.
Place bands under your feet and hold handles in each hand directly in front of you. Pull handles straight up to your chin, hold, and then release back down. You will be using your shoulders to pull up for this movement.