Greet the Day – Sun Salutations

Today we’re doing Yoga!  Sun Salutation, to be exact.  This series of poses warms up the body and the more times you repeat the cycle the more flexible and open your body becomes.  Aim to do the cycle 4 or 5 times.

Below are step by step instructions (courtesy of www.verywell.com), and an infographic. You can also follow along watching Yoga with Adriene (click here).

Sun Salutationsun-salutation

Begin in Mountain Pose

To begin, bring yourself to the front edge of your mat in mountain pose (tadasana) with the hands, palms together at your heart center.

Inhale. Bring the arms out to the sides and up to the ceiling to join your palms above your head in raised arms pose (urdhva hastasana). Lift your gaze to your thumbs and slide your shoulders away from your ears.

Exhale. Release your arms to either side and forward bend over your legs (as if you were doing a swan dive into a swimming pool) to come into a forward bend (uttanasana). Alternatively, you can keep your palm together and pass them in front of your heart as you fold forward.

Place your fingertips in line with your toes. Flatten your palms if possible or tent your fingers. Place your hands on blocks if they don’t reach the floor when your legs are straight. You can also bend the knees a little if that makes you more comfortable.

Inhale. Lift your head as you come to a flat back (ardha uttanasana), coming onto your fingertips or placing your hands on your shins, whichever allows you to get your back really flat.

Exhale. Plant your palms and step or jump back to a plank position. In plank, make sure your shoulders are over your wrists and your butt is neither sticking up nor drooping down. A straight line from the crown of your head to your heels is what you are going for. Take an inhale here.

Exhale. Lower to your knees, chest, and chin. Keep your butt high and your elbows hugging your ribs.

Inhale. Come forward to a low cobra. Anchor your pelvis and the tops of your feet to the floor but try not to press into your hands as you come up into the backbend.

Inhale. Roll over your toes (if possible) to come into an upward facing dog. Bend your elbows out to the sides at first in order to bring your shoulders down and away from your ears. Then straighten your arms. Make sure your legs are straight and your knees are lifted off the floor.

ExhalePush back to downward facing dog. You can come through hands and knees on the way if necessary.

Stay here a few breaths (or more) if you need to take a break. If you are going for a brisk pace, just stay one breath.

Exhale. Step the right foot next to the right hand and then bring the left foot to join it in standing forward bend (uttansana).

Inhale up to a flat back and then exhale back to uttanasana (forward bend).

Inhale. Lift your arms out to the sides and up, reversing the swan dive to return to raised arms pose.

Exhale. Come to stand in mountain pose with your hands in a prayer position at the heart.

Namaste.

Now go run!

Keli 🙂

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No Equipment. No Excuses.

The Holiday Hustle continues!  Today’s workout is one of those quick workouts that you can do anywhere.  On the beach, at Grandma’s house, in a small hotel room or at your local park.  No equipment.  No excuses.

  • Half Jumping Jacks
  • Close Grip Pushups
  • Bodyweight Squats
  • Side Leg Lifts
  • Kick Backs
  • Tripod Hold (30 seconds)

Do 15 reps of each exercise 1, 2 or 3 times through.

How To Do the Exercises

Half Jumping Jacks

  1. Begin in standing position.
  2. Jump up, spread legs and bring arms up halfway, return to start.
  3. Repeat.

Narrow Grip Pushups

  1. Get down on all fours and position your hands directly under your shoulders or slightly narrower.
  2. Tighten your abs to support your back, and then extend your legs out behind you and prop up on the balls of your feet. Contract your glutes and quadriceps to help keep your body straight as a plank.
  3. Bend your elbows, keeping them firmly at the sides of your torso, and lower your chest toward the floor.
  4. Extend your elbows and push yourself up to the starting position.  Imagine pushing the floor away from you, and keep your body straight as a plank the entire time.
  5. Repeat.

Squats

  1. Start by standing up tall, with shoulders back, feet about shoulder width apart, and toes pointed forward.
  2. With all your weight on your heels, inhale as you squat back by bending at the knee and sticking your tush back as you lower.
  3. Keep your head and chest up, and your eyes looking forward.
  4. Stand up, pressing through your heels and squeeze your tush at the top.

Side Leg Lifts

  1. Lie on your side, rest head in hands.
  2. Stack feet and legs on top of each other, keep your feet flexed.
  3. Slowly lift top leg up 1 inch off of the bottom leg.  This is your starting and finishing point.
  4. From here, lift leg 12 to 24 inches and slowly return to the starting point.
  5. Your focus should be lifting the leg, not swinging it or throwing it up.
  6. Repeat all reps on one leg then roll over to other side.

Kick Backs

  1. Begin on on all floors.
  2. Lift one foot pressing your heel to the sky (keep your foot flexed) until thigh is parallel to the ground.
  3. Squeeze your butt as you lift that foot towards the sky – holding at the top for 3 seconds and slowly return to start.
  4. Repeat all reps on one leg then switch.

Tripod Hover

  1. Begin in a high plank, with legs spread.
  2. Release one hand and place on your lower back, balancing on one arm and both legs – keep your hips square to the ground.
  3. Hold for 15 to 20 seconds.
  4. Slowly switch hands so you are balancing on the other side, again keep your hips square to the ground.
  5. Return hand to plank and hold for another 20 seconds.

Now go run!

Keli 🙂

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