20-Minute Fitness, Really?
Reality is that it isn’t just the holidays that we need this. Life is going at mock speed sometimes. The good news is, done right, 20-minute fitness routines can not only be enough, they can be perfect for hormone balance.
You’re stuck at the in-laws without a gym in site or space to exercise. Maybe you get lucky and there’s a treadmill or elliptical in the basement. Still, you’ve got no time before you’re recruited for shopping, sledding, and decking-the-halls. Here’s how to fit in a quick interval training workout. Then remind yourself that shopping, cooking, and snowman building all count! Haul the small kids back up hill on their sleds, pull them around the neighborhood, or find a local place to rent snow shoes.
WHAT TO DO
Always warm up no matter how little time you have. Here’s your motivation:
- Increase the oxygen to working muscles
- Reduce injury risk
- You spend more energy
- You’ll feel more comfortable
Do each for 45 seconds, moving your arms in as you do!
- Side steps
- Knee lifts (march in place)
- Hamstring curls
- Lunge side to side
(Got a treadmill, or elliptical? Just plug in one of my interval training workouts! Sharing with Flipping 50 subscribers Friday, Dec 8! Sign up!)
At your five-minute mark begin your intervals:
Do one minute of a more intense exercise.
If you can jump, pretend you’re jumping rope or do jumping jacks, (personally I hate burpees and the risk to lower back and knees they bring: done fast they tend to be done wrong).
If jumps are out try rear lunges, squats in place making it feel like a small jump but not even leaving the ground.
If your knees won’t allow anything mentioned yet, try knee lifts in place and press your arms to the sky while you do them. You want to be breathless.
Then take one minute to “recover” but do keep moving.
Side step, march in place, and allow your breathing to slow.
Repeat a total of 5 or 6 times for a total of 10 or 12 minutes.
Cool down by moving a little slower.
This is a good time to add some rotation. All that tree decorating, light hanging, or Twister on the floor can pull something if you’re not warming it up! Place one foot up and rotate your upper body. Repeat on the other side.
Finish your last two minutes with some hip stretching (pigeon if you do yoga, or a seated or standing hip #4 stretch, a downward dog (a great shoulder-opener and low back – hamstring stretch). Whatever you do… don’t skip the cool down just because it’s a 20-minute fitness routine. Make it a part of the deal. You’ll get more out of your next workout if you stretch after this one.
See other 20-minute fitness options on video.
WHAT TO EAT
Protein is your best defense against cravings and temptation. Combine it with fiber for a one-two punch. Women often ask me what I do when I crave sugar. I may blankly stare back. I honestly don’t crave sugar if I put protein, fiber, and fat in each meal. Skimping on carbohydrates (the right kind) can also get you into big craving trouble. For a 20-minute fitness routine the morning after a big rich meal, you may want to do it fasted. But be sure you fuel after about 60 minutes for sparing muscle losses and so that you wait out the blunting effect for protein synthesis that exists for about an hour after exercise.
You need carbs especially if you have a little anxiety (in laws, gift lists, end-of-year deadlines anyone?). Carbs help soothe. If you’re not sleeping well on some foreign mattress your cravings can increase. Be sure to include some high quality carbs at breakfast and lunch so that when the afternoon comes and someone is decorating Christmas cookies you don’t cave.
WHAT TO WEAR
Your shoes are your foundation. Don’t skimp on them. Choose according to your foot not to your color or a brand. Every brand has a shoe model for every foot. You just want the ideal marriage between your flat foot, high arch, or neutral foot and the activity you’re going to be doing. Support the girls with a good bra. If you still have a bra from 1990, its time to upgrade and uplift. I love @skirtsports for running-worthy bras. When you’re doing 20-minute fitness routines, you’re likely to need more support for the girls. Don’t skip this.
Last, if you feel jiggly (apparently spellcheck doesn’t recognize that as a word!) it’s not very motivating. The right tights can help you feel fit already. We know that wearing active wear (if it’s a good fit) makes us more likely to be active, think active, and that’s a good thing. Yoga pants for everyone!
@lululemon has some booty lifting thigh tightening bottoms if you need a hug
@prana for the mat and lower body love especially for yoga followed by errands
@athletica for the top (I have this one in so many colors)
@asics for the kayanos I love to run and wear anywhere
Want support? If you wish someone would tell you exactly what to eat, what exercise to do, and how it’s going to help so you’re motivated to do it, I can help.
First, though, know that no one should tell you exactly what to eat. Your body chemistry and gut are unique. Based on your history of foods you’ve consumed, your stress, hormones, and metabolism right now, what you need to thrive will be different.
What I can do is show you how to identify what’s making you unable to lose weight, or feel bloated and why you don’t have energy consistently through the day (including morning and mid-afternoon or early evening when you’re finally not busy and may crash).
Here’s the thing.. you can go to a doctor and take a lab test. Nothing wrong with that, but I’m a big believer that your body has wisdom of it’s own that we each need to consider and if you let it, it can lead you to the right next steps.
How you move, what you eat, and how you go about your daily habits all matter. It’s type and timing that are so important – more than just the addition of those habits at the end of the day.
I give you a blueprint for identifying your best energy. We co-collaborate. I give you the science and the coaching for your mindset (changing what we’ve been taught and thought for 30+ years is a challenge!) and you have the body wisdom and results that help us adjust and progress.
Or, if private coaching at your convenience and focused on you with custom exercise, nutrition, and adjustments based on your busy life is more appealing to you, read this and then apply. I have a limited number of spots and rates change Jan 1, 2018. Now is the time to jump in.