These exercises can help with muffin top and underarm jiggle
by Hilary Valine. Fitness Director at Element Wellness
As a Pilates Instructor and Fitness Director of a busy studio, I get asked all the time how to tone this or strengthen that. But, there are two parts of the body that nearly every woman asks me about...the underarm jiggle and the muffin top, those pesky flabs of skin and fat that hang out under our arms and over our jeans.
These trouble spots usually begin to appear in our late 20’s, after we’ve had children, or can be hastened by genetics - thank you mom and dad! The good news is you can kick this fat to the curb by performing cardiovascular exercise at least 30 minutes a day, eating a healthy diet, one low in saturated fats and calories, and add these two simple moves to your routine.
It’s time to grab your two or three-pound weights and your yoga mat and get moving!
Exercise: Intensive Straight Arm Tricep Lift To Prepare: Hold your weights in your hands, bring your knees and feet together, bend your knees, and hinge from your hips. Make sure your back is straight and keep your gaze to the floor. Draw your straightened arms to your sides, palms turned in facing your body. Next, lift your arms slightly above your torso and pull in your abdominals.
Action: Begin to exhale to lift your arms for two counts and inhale to lower for two counts - keeping arms straight, but not locked. Complete eight repetitions. Next, exhale to lift and inhale to lower your arms at a one-count pace for sixteen repetitions. Focus on the lift of your arms. Avoid arching or swaying your lower back and do not look up, keep your eyes to the floor to avoid overextending the neck. Repeat this series two to three times at least three days a week.
Exercise: The Pilates Hundred To Prepare: Lie on your back on your yoga mat, bend your knees and keep your legs and feet hip distance apart. The breathing for the Pilates Hundred is an inhale through your nose for five counts and an exhale out of your mouth for five counts through pursed lips.
Action: Tip your chin to take your gaze toward your knees, contract your abdominals and slowly lift your head and shoulders from the floor. Continuing to look at your knees, lift and hover your arms above the floor. Begin to pump your straight arms, using your triceps, as you inhale for five counts and then exhale for five counts. Complete ten breathing cycles of inhales and exhales. To progress this exercise, you would bring your knees over your hips and squeeze your inner thighs together, challenging your abdominals and torso stability. One more progression would be to extend the legs out at a 45-degree angle. Arm movement is the same. Focus on pulling your naval to your spine and keeping your back neutral. Allow your gaze to stay toward your knees and avoid placing undue stress and tension in your neck and shoulders. Repeat this exercise three to four times a week.
As with any new exercise regimen, check with your doctor before you begin. Incorporating these exercises into your current exercise routine and healthy diet you should start to see a toner, leaner, and stronger you.
So what are you waiting for?
Element (Wellness Spa Studio) is a full service holistic medical spa and wellness center in Kansas City. We offer everything from aesthetics to wellness services and a fully equipped yoga and pilates studio along with boutique studio classes. Visit thrivekc.com for more information.
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