Tag Archives: toning

My Favorite P90x Moves

It took me forever to finally break down and buy the P90x system.  The price was the absolute biggest factor.  I couldn’t get myself to pay $120 dollars for a workout dvd.  Then I realized that most people pay at least that much going to a gym, so I found it to be more of an investment that anything.  Plus, even if I wasn’t the perfect P90x-er, I was still going to get a great workout.  In the end, I went on Amazon.com and found the system for $80 used.  I couldn’t say no to that price!

So I’m going to share with you my favorite moves from the workout dvd’s.  Now you can try these at home or at your gym and see if they work for you.  At the very least, you’ll see what I’ve been doing these past few weeks! I’ll try to explain them as best as possible. I’d much rather demonstrate them, but I supplied pictures to help you see what I am saying in my description of each move.

Here are my Top 5 Exercises

5) Balance Lunges

Balance Lunges

Balance Lunge

This move belongs to the Legs and Back series of exercises.  I love this move and was doing them even before P90x.

Place top of foot (or tiptoes) on chair. Lunge outward with other leg. Be sure to keep knee over ankle.  Dip down without allowing your knee to move past ankle. If necessary, modify by placing top of foot on chair. To intensify: Add light weights and increase range of motion.

4) Dive Bombers

Dive Bomber

Dive Bomber

The dive bomber is awesome.  I can usually only do 8-10 because my arms literally collapse.  This is part of the Chest and Back workout.

Begin in a “downward facing dog”-like position but with wider feet and arms.

Lower your head to the ground as you arch your bad – pretend there is a fence and you are going to go underneath it.  Stay on your toes as you do this move.

Finish by pushing yourself upwards.  Your back will be arched.  Your chest should be up with straight arms – this is like an “upward dog” pose in yoga.  You should still be kind of on your toes, your knees shouldn’t be touching the ground.

To go into the next move, either push back into a downward dog or do the move in reverse by lowering back into the second part of the exercise and again back into the downward facing position.  Either will work, but doing the move in reverse will be harder.

3) Right Angle Pose and Extended Right Angle Pose

 

Extended Right Angle Pose

Extended Right Angle Pose

This one is kind of tricky to explain, but I’ll do my best.  This is my favorite move from the Yoga series.  Begin in a deep lunge, don’t allow your knee to extend over your ankle in the process.  Next, raise your arm over your head.  Your other hand can balance on the ground nearest your front foot for now.

Next, bring your raised arm back behind you.  Use the other arm to reach under your front thigh and grab your wrist.  Hold this pose for 30 seconds or so.  Then do the other side with the opposite leg in front and the opposite arm reaching behind and underneath you.

2) Jump Knee Tuck

 

Jump Knee Tuck

Jump Knee Tuck

This is fairly straight forward.  The jump knee tuck exercise is part of the Plyometrics workout.  Basically, you’ll want comfortable shoes for this one and a cushy mat under you.  You’re going to spring off the ground and tuck your knees into your chest then land on your toes.  Try to make sure you don’t come booming down to the ground – you should land relatively quietly if you’re landing on the balls of your feet.  Do this multiple times for at least 30 seconds.  The last 10 seconds, pick up the pace and do as many as you can very fast.

1) The Push-Up

 

Push Up

Push Up

Surprise!  Anyone who has read through my blog knows I am a stickler for push-ups.  They really are the best exercise that hits all the best places on your body.  You’ll work your chest, butt, arms and abs.  No more saggy anything with this move.  Heck, if it’s good enough for those tough army soldiers, it’s good enough for me!

Now, start in the plank position.  Lower yourself, keeping your back straight (not saggy and don’t allow your butt to stick out in the air).  Keep lowering your body until your arms form a 90 degree angle.

Next push back up onto your hands, keeping proper form and then repeat the exercise.

Your wrists may hurt, so try getting the push up bars as these will keep your wrists from straining and will also extend your range of motion.

So there is just a taste of my daily burn.  I’ll post more exercises as I go.  I hope this helped anyone who was curious as to what the P90x program entails.  Obviously there is a LOT more exercises, these are just my favorites that I look forward to sweating through.

Shoes that Tone Your Butt? The Truth Revealed.

Reebok EasyTone

Bummer.

After watching the commercials and seeing all the hype, I must admit that I was significantly influenced to go out and by myself a pair of the Reebok EasyTone shoes.  Toning shoes are all over the media these days.  Who doesn’t want to be able to put on a pair of shoes and eventually get hot buns and thighs? Count me in!  But after doing my own research and looking at studies that have recently been conducted by reputable universities, I think I’m going to pass on the miracle shoes.  Here is why.

 

The shoe companies claim that these shoes cause minor instability, similar to that of instability balls at the gym on a much smaller scale.  This instability results in more muscles working and thus more toning in the legs, butt and thighs.  If you read reviews online, such as Amazon.com, people who have worn these shoes find that their muscles are sore afterwards.  So the shoes must be working, right?

 

Well not entirely.  According to WebMD, the soreness is most likely attributed to the muscles working in different ways, but not enough to warrant claims of overall toning.  The muscles quickly will adapt to the odd instability before your buns become steel.

 

A study was done at the University of Wisconsin-LaCrosse with four different pairs of shoes (3 toning brands and 1 regular tennis shoe).  12 active women between the ages of 19-24 wore the shoes for 12 five minute intervals on the treadmill. Researchers then monitored how hard they worked.  A second test group of women between the ages of 21-27 performed similar tests while wearing the shoes.  Researchers then looked at muscle usage while wearing the shoes. The results? There was no significant change in calories burned or muscle usage when comparing the four shoes.

 

So, this sucks because I was really looking forward to buying a pair of these shoes.  People say they do feel better for people who put a lot of pressure on their heels when standing and walking.  Maybe there are people who would just like the shoe for the comfort factor.  Still, don’t be expecting to walk in these shoes for a few days and end up with the kind of legs and buns seen in the commercials.  For those results, looks like it’s exercise and diet that win again!

 

To read more about the study, go to http://www.webmd.com/fitness-exercise/features/truth-about-toning-shoes.