Friday, March 20, 2009

Multitask During March Madness

Before beer, burgers and basketball get the best of you this weekend, plan to maximize your time in front of the telly burning calories before you burn your brackets when your picks don't work out. Rather than sit and let the beer gut develop or start to feel sorry for yourself when you look at the scale come Monday morning, multitask during the NCAA tourney with some workouts that will help your training in the long run.
  • Stretching. Any trainer--or at least those I've spoken with this winter about my own running issues--reiterate the need for proper stretching. Sometimes it's before working out, sometimes it's after, but either way you don't want to leave it off the schedule. Try hip bridges, wall sits, calf and hammy stretches, bicep and tricep pulls and more while the game is in play or on commercial.
  • Take the game to the gym. Everyone is doing it, or so it seems when you glance around at the TV screens at the gym: pedaling on the stationary bike, using the elliptical or running on the treadmill while flipping between games. Thanks to technology and the TV hookups for individual machines it's even easier to squeeze in your workout and game watching at the same time.
  • Cycling. If you have a trainer for your road/tri bike, set it up in front of the TV and instead of watching a spinning video or movies, keep the game on. I don't know about you, but a little motivation from athletes on the screen always keeps my workout in check--like Biggest Loser Tuesdays where I push through the last workout before the weigh-in. Mileage in the saddle during the winter only preps the legs for the upcoming riding season--and with spring finally arriving, that time is closer than ever.
  • Core training. Admit it, the only way you'll get in those moves to strengthen your core is if you find the time to do it. TV time is a great motivator to start those crunches, lunges, squats and legs lifts. Pull out those stability balls for crunches, grab a medicine ball and pass it between a partner, practice your push ups and perfect your plank. Your body will love you when you really throw yourself into training season.
  • Resistance band training. Use these stretchy bands to work your arm muscles with bicep curls, shoulders and delts with rows (if you can find a sturdy object to wrap the band around), or practice woodchops, triceps extensions, lateral rows and chest presses. You can also work the core with more lunges, squats and hip strengthening.

Not only will your body thank you after a combination of these moves and workouts, but you'll be less inclined to snack on junk food while sitting in front of the TV. Or if you still do, at least you'll have a calorie burn to cancel out some of the splurging. This is one change your body can believe in and might show results at the races too. And for even more at-home moves, check out some of these sites: Shape, Self, Fitness, Men's Health, Women's Health, and Photo grabbed from upliftmofo at Flickr. Posted by Kate

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