Legs

Knee Injury Prevention Exercises

In December, I took a fall on my skis that resulted in a minor lateral meniscus tear and has led to 7 weeks of really slowing down my physical activity. Thankfully, the ole knee seems to be healing up quite nicely! As much as it’s a bummer to think about, there is actually no way to prevent injury. Things happen. No matter how strong someone may be, the body can only take on so much force, torque and impact. That being said, we can definitely mitigate injury risk by training smart.

A great way to stabilize and strengthen the knee is by adding a band around the legs and keeping the knee in a safe and stable position while moving through different planes of motion.

Give these moves a try and lesson learned for me is to avoid those powder runs towards the end of the ski day when the legs are jelly ⛷❄️ Heavy weighted goblet squat pulse w/ hop out (I used one 25lb dumbbell)
Deadlift with single arm upright row
Step back with fly
Jumping jack with overhead press

6 Full Body Moves Guaranteed To Make You Sweat

Here are six full body moves that have been incorporated into @wellnessbylittle workouts this week! These exercises are effective at toning and strengthening muscles in addition to getting a cardiovascular workout with all the multi joint (arms+legs) moving!

Bust out these moves in addition to a workout you’re already doing or on their own if you’re short on time!

Curtsy lunge to lateral lunge with rotation x15/side
Narrow to wide weight squat hops x30
Single leg TRX pistol squats x15/leg
Chest fly with single leg lifts x20
Tricep skull crushers with heel tapdowns x20
Double tap bicycles x20
Repeat 2x

Lower Body Weighted Squat Challenge!

Fastest way to stronger, more toned legs and glutes in my opinion? This lower body series right here! Perform this circuit 3x/wk for one month and I guarantee you’ll see change!

I learned this 12 years ago (woah 😳) from a trainer friend when I worked at Allstar Fitness in West Seattle in high school. It’s a perfect circuit to add into any full body routine or on its own if you’re short on time. *please do not follow my lead on the part where I don’t properly rack my weights with clamps. I swear I know what I’m doing over here 😂 but in all seriousness, safety first otherwise you might be featured in the next epic fail workout compilations on Youtube.

Perform this circuit with minimal breaks while maintaining proper squat, lunge and burpee form. Once you’ve done this routine for a week, there are two ways to challenge yourself: either add more weight to your squats on the bar or increase the # of reps to 12 and so on as squatting starts getting easier week after week.

Warmup (bar only) squats x10
20 lunge jumps
Weighted squats (add desired weight. I used two 10lb plates) x10
10 burpees
Weighted squats x10
20 lunge jumps

A Couples Strength Gain Success Story!

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Couples that workout together at 6am are winning at life! These two have been some of the most dedicated and hard working humans over the past 6 months. The proof is in the results. Check it out!

Their goal was to improve lower body strength for snowboard season. We tested their isometric strength through wall sits and in the course of three weeks they collectively improved their time by just over 10 minutes! That’s an extra 10 minutes hanging out in a wall sit, no big deal!

In training, we often consider physical strength as our biggest hurdle but arguably mental toughness can be an even bigger barrier. From our minds convincing us to “start tomorrow” to that in the moment rate of perceived exertion during an exercise, our minds and self talk can have a big impact on performance. The reality is we really are way stronger than we think.

Way to crush Rachel and David. Your hard work and discipline is so inspiring! Keep up the good work you two 👍🏼

21 DAY LOWER BODY BURNER CHALLENGE STARTS TODAY!

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MOVEMENT CHALLENGE STARTS NOVEMBER 1ST!
This year we’re changing things up a bit. Gotta keep you people on your toes - literally! This challenge is all about that lower body burn. Winter sports will be here before we know it and there’s no better time to throw these strengthening exercises into the mix! All movements can be taken as slowly and with as many breaks as needed. The number of reps just has to be completed in a given day. If you’re a regular client of Wellness By Little’s, you have no excuse! All reps are to be completed in one go with quick rest 15 second rest periods… if you absolutely need them.

Be sure to stay tuned into Wellness By Little for reminders & inspo plus share your success using hashtag #WBLlowerbodyburn!

And please, please, please review proper technique below for each movement and consult your doctor prior to starting any new exercise program.

3 movements. 3 weeks. You can do this!

Week One Wednesday Nov 1 - Wednesday Nov 7
November 1 BASELINE TEST WALL SIT (Hold your longest wall sit. Record your time.)
November 2 Squat hops x 30
November 3 Squat hops x 50
November 4 Squat hops x 70
November 5 Squat hops x 90
November 6 Squat hops x 100

Week Two Wednesday Nov 7 - Wednesday Nov 13
November 7 Wall sit 90 seconds
November 8 Wall sit 90 seconds
November 9 Wall sit 2:00 minutes
November 10 Wall sit 3:00 minutes
November 11 Wall sit 4:00 minutes
November 12 Wall sit 5:00 minutes
November 13 Wall sit 5:00 minutes

Week Three Wednesday Nov 14- Nov 21
November 14 Lunge jumps x40
November 15 Lunge jumps x50
November 16 Lunge jumps x60
November 17 Lunge jumps x70
November 18 Lunge jumps x80
November 19 Lunge jumps x90
November 20 Lunge jumps x100
November 21 BASELINE RETEST WALL SIT

WALL SIT FORM

Alignment & Posture Considerations:
Sit to 90 degrees
Knees don't come over toes
Weight in your heels
Knees track in line with toes
Low back firmly presses into wall by tucking the tailbone under (posteriorly tilt the pelvis)

SQUAT HOP FORM

Alignment, Posture & Modifications:
Stand tall
Feet turn out to 11 o’clock and 1 o’clock
Knees point out
Brace your core
Weight shifts into heels as rear lowers down to 90 degrees
Push down on the floor to jump up
Land softly with micro-bend in knees
MODIFY: Squats with no hop


LUNGE JUMP FORM

Alignment, Posture & Modifications:
Begin with feet 3-4ft apart
Lengthen crown of the head towards the ceiling
Place weight in heel of front foot
Knee tracks straight in alignment with big toe
Back heel turns up towards the ceiling
Back knee points straight down towards the ground
Both feet take off and land at the same time
Land softly
MODIFY: Reverse lunge without the hop

STARTS OCT 1: Autumn #WBLdoesabootygood Squat Challenge!

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It's that time a year again. Summer is over and it's time to start sippin' our PSL's and binge watching Stranger Things but not without showing a little love to our booty's. 
Challenge start Oct 1 and ends on Halloween. We're throwing in some curveballs into this years challenge so prepare for more than just squats! This challenge is perfect for anyone wanting to building strength and stamina in their legs (shoutout to all the snow bunnies) and is suitable for all fitness levels. Each day there is a designated number of squats to be performed and you can do them all at once or break them into mini circuits throughout the day - do what works best for you. 

Show us those beautiful squats by tagging us @wellnessbylittle and sharing your progress with the community using #WBLdoesabootygood. 

MODIFICATIONS: If you have a lower back, knee, ankle or hip issue modify the squat hop with a regular squat, no hop. If you are healthy and good to go - no dogging it, hops for days! 

Reminders for Wall Sits: Lower down so hips are parallel to knees, tuck your tailbone so you're able to glue your low back to the wall. Weight in heels and BREATHE!!!!!! Those legs are going to want oxygen during these wall sits and the only way they'll get it is if you take deep inhales and exhales. 

SQUAT CHALLENGE
Oct 1: 20 squat hops + hold a wall sit for as long as you can.
Be sure to time yourself. This is your baseline number. We will repeat this at the end of October. 
Oct 2: 30 squat hops
Oct 3: 40 squat hops
Oct 4: 50 squat hops
Oct 5: 50 squat hops + a 2 minute wall sit
Oct 6: 50 squat hops
Oct 7: 50 squat hops + a 1 minute isometric squat hold (you can perform a sumo/plea squat if you prefer!)
Oct 8: 50 squat hops
Oct 9: 60 squat hops
Oct 10: 60 squat hops + a 2 minute wall sit
Oct 11: 60 squat hops
Oct 12: 60 squat hops + a 1 minute isometric squat hold (you can perform a sumo/plea squat if you prefer!)
Oct 13: 60 squat hops
Oct 14: 65 squat hops
Oct 15: 70 squat hops
Oct 16: 72 squat hops
Oct 17: 74 squat hops
Oct 18: 76 squat hops
Oct 19: 78 squat hops
Oct 20: 80 squat hops
Oct 21: 80 squat hops + a 2 minute wall sit
Oct 22: 80 squat hops
Oct 23: 80 squat hops + a 1 minute isometric squat hold (you can perform a sumo/plea squat if you prefer!)
Oct 24: 90 squat hops
Oct 25: 100 squat hops
Oct 26: 120 squat hops
Oct 27: 140 squat hops
Oct 28: 160 squat hops
Oct 29: 180 squat hops
Oct 30: 200 squat hops
Oct 31: Retest your wall sit time by holding as long as you can again. Share your success @wellnessbylittle!

Congrats, you made it! Whoo hoo! 
 

November 1st - 24th Thanksgiving Wall Sit Challenge

What better way to lead up to Thanksgiving than a beautiful wall sit challenge :) 

The rules are the same as the plank challenge we did last month. You do not have to complete the full time in one sitting. You can break the timing up into circuits if needed but the full time listed below for each day must be completed by the end of that day. Good luck to everyone participating!

Alignment & Posture Considerations:
Sit to 90 degrees
Knees don't come over toes
Weight in your heels
Knees track in line with toes
Low back firmly presses into wall by tucking the tailbone under (posteriorly tilt the pelvis)


Nov 1 30 seconds
Nov 2 45 seconds
Nov 3 1:00 min
Nov 4 1:15 min
Nov 5 1:30 min
Nov 6 1:45 min
Nov 7 2:00 min
Nov 8 2:15 min
Nov 9 2:30 min
Nov 10 2:45 min
Nov 11 3:00 min
Nov 12 3:15 min
Nov 13 3:30 min
Nov 14 3:45 min
Nov 15 4:00 min
Nov 16 4:15 min
Nov 17 4:30 min
Nov 18 4:45 min
Nov 19 5:00 min
Nov 20 5:15 min
Nov 21 5:30 min
Nov 22 5:45 min
Nov 23 6:00 min
Nov 24 8:00 min 

My 4 Favorite Stability Moves

Stability Ball Session

In the following order repeat this circuit 3 times:

1. Plank Knee Tucks x 15

1. Plank Knee Tucks x 15

2. Stir the pot x12 each direction.  - In plank position make small circles in each direction

2. Stir the pot x12 each direction. 
- In plank position make small circles in each direction

3. Hamstring Curls x20 - From bridge position with hips high, bend knees to bring ball towards rear. 

3. Hamstring Curls x20
- From bridge position with hips high, bend knees to bring ball towards rear. 

4. Stability Ball Exchange x20 - Exchange stability ball from hands and feet with low back firmly planted on ground. 

4. Stability Ball Exchange x20
- Exchange stability ball from hands and feet with low back firmly planted on ground. 

The Ultimate Full Body Balance Workout!

Today's workout Wednesday is all about balance. EQUIPMENT NEEDED: dumbells. 

Single leg bicep curls with dumbbell x12/leg

Single leg overhead press with dumbbell x10/leg

Single leg squat x20/leg

Single leg dead lift x10/leg

Core:

Single leg lifts x30 total (laying on back/15 per leg)

Repeat 3x

 

 

Plunge Into Plyometrics

Plyometric exercises are also known as "jumping" or "explosive" movements that are designed to be maximum force in a short period of time. The benefit of performing plyometric type exercises is to increase muscular power. These movements mimic exercises such as skiing, football, basketball and soccer, so athletes to the active adult can see benefits from performing plyometrics. Because the nature of these exercises and the potential for increased stress on joints, muscles and tendons precaution and/or modifications should be taken if you have an injury.

Plyometric Workout - No Equipment Needed:

Squat Hops x20
Burpies (w/ push up) x20
1:00min Plank

30sec Rest then repeat 1x

Lunge SwitchUps x20
Plank Jumping Jacks x30
1:00min Plank

30sec Rest then repeat 1x

Jumping Jacks x50
High Knees x50
Side to side hops x50
Front to back hops x50

30sec Rest then repeat 1x

Workout Wednesday: TRX Style

The TRX suspension trainer was developed by Navy Seals and is intended to use gravity and body weight to challenge the muscular system. The reason I love TRX is that it is safe and there are simple ways to make an exercise easier or more difficult depending on your level of athleticism. For easier modifications, simply changing the angle of your body in comparison to the TRX will make it less difficult while adding a hop to lower body exercises can add intensity. The below exercises are rated for beginner's to intermediate. 

Repeat circuit 3 times. 

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