Saturday, February 14, 2009

The Couple's Workout

After so many years of marriage, sometimes it is hard to find things that we like to do together nowadays when we have free time. We find ourselves spending our "date" time together either shopping for food or for the kids or running errands to take care of "stuff". I follow some health and fitness websites and from time to time, I find some very interesting articles. In light of Valentine's Day I thought I'd put this out for you to try. We always use the excuse that we have no time to exercise, so we decided to kill two birds with one stone. Glenn and I worked out this morning by going to spinning class together. Of course, you can add your own exercise regime to this list too, if you know what I mean.

By Raphael
Calzadilla, B.A., CPT, ACE
eDiets Chief Fitness Pro

Sexy positions and sweaty, interlocking bodies -- I'm talking about exercise, of course. I've created a fun and exhilarating Valentine's couples workout to get muscles working and circulation pumping -- but you have to perform this workout with your sweetie. So have some fun, be supportive of your partner, and give your heart and muscles what they need.

Pam Ofstein, eDiets Director of Nutrition Services, was kind of enough to be my partner in this Valentine's Day couples' workout.

Perform each exercise, then move to the next one. Try to complete the circuit (all exercises) twice.

Couples' Lunge and Reverse Lunge
1. You get double your money with this exercise. Begin by facing your partner while holding each others' hands with arms slightly elevated.

2. Pam takes a forward long lunge with her left leg, while I perform a reverse lunge with my right leg. Alternate legs with each rep. Keep your body straight during both movements, and don't let your opposing knee touch the floor. Perform 12 reps on each leg.

After completing 12 reps, the person performing the reverse lunge then performs the forward lunge, and the person performing forward lunges will switch to reverse lunges. Lunges will work the quadriceps, hamstrings and the butt. Support your partner by keeping your hands and arms elevated and by giving them words of encouragement.

Couples' Squat
1. Begin by facing your partner while holding each others' hands, with arms slightly elevated. Feet should be shoulder-width apart.

2. Lower by bending at the hips and knees to a parallel squat. It's important to stick your butt out while lowering -- almost as if you're about to sit in a chair.

Rise back up to the starting position and repeat. Perform 15 reps. Squats work the quadriceps, hamstrings and butt.

Interlocking Crunches
1. Begin by lying on a mat with your feet and ankles interlocked. This will provide support for your partner.

2. Place your hands crossed over your chest and perform an abdominal crunch. Support your partner by telling them to keep his eyes straight up and not to bend his neck. Perform 15 reps.

Interlocking Bicycle Maneuver
Begin with your backs flat on a mat with feet and ankles interlocked. With your fingertips placed on the sides of your head, perform opposite elbow to opposite knee crunches. Lower to the mat and perform the same movement on the other side. Perform 15 reps on each side.

Chest Press
Both partners shoulder stagger their feet so one leg is behind and one leg in front. Bring hands up to chest level and place the bottom of your hands against the hands of your partner. Now each of you should slowly push right and left as each partner provides just a bit of resistance. This is great for the chest, shoulders and arms. Perform the movement for 40 seconds. Look directly in your partner's eyes while performing the exercise and keep your torso facing forward -- don't twist your upper body.

Shoulder Press
One person will begin on their knees. Bend arms at the elbow 90 degrees and make fists. Partner stands behind and provides the slightest resistance by pressing down with the palms as the person kneeling presses upward. The goal of the person kneeling is to perform a full shoulder press with resistance. Perform 10 reps, then switch.

Hamstring Stretch

Lay flat on a mat with knees bent. As you raise one leg, your partner will place his hand on your ankle and gently stretch your leg towards your upper torso. This should be performed with very little pressure, and your lower back should not come up off the mat. Hold for 30 seconds and switch legs.

Celebrate Your Victory!

Oh, and guys? Please give your honey a Valentine's gift that's thoughtful and meaningful. Otherwise, the remainder of 2009 will look like this:

Happy Valentines Day!

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