The Rest-Day Tune-Up

29 Jul

I found this great article on the Women’s Health blog.  It stresses the importance of rest days during the week, but included a great “rest-day tune-up” for when you are feeling like you need to do something that day.  I can totally relate to that feeling of wanting to keep the momentum going, but knowing my body needs a break.  This should help me feel nice and productive on rest days.

I really recommend following Women’s (or Men’s) Health on Twitter.  They have great tips and articles.

Enjoy!

The Rest-Day Tune-Up

1. Side-Lying Thoracic Rotation (10 reps on each side)
recovery exercise: thoracic rotationTo loosen the muscles of your middle and upper back: Lie on your left side on the floor, with your hips and knees bent 90 degrees. Straighten both arms in front of you at shoulder height, palms pressed together. Your arm and shoulder should touch the floor. Keeping your left arm and both legs in position, rotate your right arm up and over your body and rotate your torso to the right, until your right hand and upper back are flat on the floor. Hold for 2 seconds, then bring your right arm back to the starting position.Complete the prescribed number of reps, then turn over and do the same number for your other side.

2. Reach, Roll, and Lift (10 reps on each side)
recovery exercise: reach roll liftTo enhance the mobility of your shoulders and upper back: Kneel down and place your elbows on the floor, allowing your back to round. Your elbows should be bent 90 degrees. Your palms should be flat on the floor. Slide your right hand forward until your arm is straight. Rotate your right palm so that it’s facing up. Raise your right arm as high as you can. Do all your reps, then repeat with your left arm.
3. Half-Kneeling Rotational Chop (10 reps on each side)
recovery exercise: rotational chopAttach a rope handle to the high pulley of a cable station. Kneel down so that your left side faces the weight stack and your right knee is on the floor but your left knee is bent 90 degrees with your left foot flat on the floor. Keep your core braced and pull the rope past your right hip. Bend your left arm and straighten your right arm as you pull the rope down.

4. Standing Hamstring Stretch (60 seconds on each side)
recovery exercise: hamstring stretchTo stretch your hamstrings from both your hip and your knee: Place your right foot on a bench or secure chair. Your right leg should be completely straight; your left leg should be slightly bent. Stand tall with your back naturally arched and place your hands on your hips. Without rounding your lower back, bend at the hips and lower your torso until you feel a comfortable stretch, and hold that position for the prescribed amount of time. Bending your knee more increases the stretch near your hip; keeping it straight increases the stretch at your knee.

5. Sumo Squat to Stand (10 reps)
recovery exercise: sumo squat to standTo loosen your quadriceps, hamstrings, glutes, groin, and lower back: Stand tall with your legs straight and your feet shoulder-width apart. Keeping your legs straight, bend over and grab your toes. (If you need to bend your knees you can, but bend them only as much as necessary.) Without letting go of your toes, lower your body into a squat as you raise your chest and shoulders up. Staying in the squat position, raise your right arm up high and wide. Then raise your left arm. Now stand up.

6. Inchworm (5 reps)
recovery exercise: inchwormTo loosen your thigh, hip, and oblique muscles: Stand tall with your legs straight and bend over and touch the floor. Keeping your legs straight and your core braced, walk your hands forward. Then take tiny steps to walk your feet back to your hands. That’s one repetition. If you can’t reach the floor with your legs straight, bend your knees just enough so you can. As your flexibility improves, try to straighten them a little more.

7. Prone Hip Internal Rotation (10 reps)
recovery exercise: internal hip rotationTo loosen your deep hip muscles: Lie facedown on the floor with your knees together and bent 90 degrees. Without allowing your hips to rise off the floor, lower your feet straight out to the sides as far as you comfortably can. Hold for 1 or 2 seconds, then return to the starting position.

8. Supine Hip Internal Rotation (10 reps)
recovery exercise: supine hip rotationTo loosen the muscles of your inner thighs and hips: Lie faceup on the floor with your knees bent 90 degrees. Your feet should be flat on the floor and about twice shoulder-width apart. Without allowing your feet to move, lower your knees inward as far as you comfortably can. Hold for 1 or 2 seconds, then return to the starting position.

9. Lying Glute Stretch (60 seconds each side)
recovery exercise: glute stretchTo loosen your glutes and reduce your likelihood of experiencing lower back pain: Lie faceup on the floor with your knees and hips bent. Cross your left leg over your right so that your left ankle sits across your right thigh. Grab your left knee with both hands and pull it toward the middle of your chest until you feel a comfortable stretch in your glutes.
10. Wall Slide (10 reps)
recovery exercise: wall slideTo enhance the function of your shoulder blades, which can help improve posture and shoulder health: Lean your head, upper back, and butt against the wall. Place your hands and arms against the wall in the “high-five” position, your elbows bent 90 degrees and your upper arms at shoulder height. Keeping your elbows, wrists, and hands pressed into the wall, slide your elbows down toward your sides as far as you can. Squeeze your shoulder blades together and hold for 1 second. Slide your arms back up the wall as high as you can while keeping your hands in contact with the wall. Lower and repeat.

7 Responses to “The Rest-Day Tune-Up”

  1. sjvella July 30, 2012 at 5:54 am #

    I will definitely try them out today 🙂 I will probably suggest them to my followers x

    • chirpybleu July 30, 2012 at 6:22 am #

      Awesome! Hope you like them!!!

      • sjvella July 30, 2012 at 8:51 am #

        yeah, lets see how much I like them when I try them out hehe 😛 heh

      • chirpybleu July 30, 2012 at 9:06 am #

        LOL Yeah same here! They are always awesome in theory! 🙂

      • sjvella July 30, 2012 at 9:08 am #

        hehe exactly

  2. sjvella July 31, 2012 at 4:33 am #

    I wrote about your blog on my post 🙂 check it out

    • chirpybleu July 31, 2012 at 6:24 am #

      Thanks so much! I am glad you liked the workouts! I really appreciate the shout out and am so glad you are enjoying my blog! Have a great “healthy” rest of the week! 🙂

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