Spring into Summer Exercise Routine

 

Spring is almost over and summer is almost here whether you’ve gotten to enjoy it or not, and it’s time to get moving! No more hibernating in your home. We have more extended daylight hours and warmer weather ahead so let’s get ready to spring into summer fitness.

At this time of year when the weather is nicer, we have more options to be active. Whether you choose running, walking, swimming, or cycling, you’ll benefit greatly from incorporating more exercise into your daily routine. No, it doesn’t have to be a grueling session at the gym.  A vigorous walk or a hike on a gorgeous trail is just as good. And variety is good, so mix it up when you can.

Today I’m going to share with you my basic, go-to spring into summer exercise routine I turn to when I’m short on time and want to squeeze in some activity in my day. You won’t need any equipment, and you can do it virtually anywhere.

First, we want to make sure we’re doing these exercises correctly to avoid injuring ourselves and to get the most out of each movement. I realized early on in practice that many people don’t know how to do basic exercises because they were never shown they right way. Let’s go back-to-basics! Form matters.

 

  1. Jumping Jacks

The jumping jack is a great cardio exercise that targets your whole body. It’s perfect for warming up to get the blood flowing and also ideal for keeping your heart rate up during a workout session.

How to do Jumping Jacks:

Start by standing tall with your feet directly under your hips (aka hip-width distance) and arms at your sides. Simultaneously raise your arms overhead (if you can, clap your hands together) while jumping both legs out to the side (feet should land softly and just wider than your hips), then quickly return to the starting position and repeat.

 

  1. Squats

The squat is a compound movement that’s great for working out every part of your leg muscles, and it can get your heart rate up there, too. When squats begin to get easy for you, challenge yourself by doing them with a set of hand weights.

How to Squat:

Start by standing tall with your feet slightly wider than hip-width distance apart. Holding your hands straight out in front of you and looking straight ahead, tighten your stomach muscles (keep your shoulders and chest wide) and lower your body as if sitting (push your butt back as you bend your knees). Your body weight should be evenly distributed throughout your entire foot. Keeping your body tight, return to the starting position and repeat.

 

  1. Push-ups

The push-up is a goodie for strengthening your upper body and core. If you struggle to get them at first, start on your knees and keep working at it. As you build your upper body and core muscles, push-ups should get more comfortable for you.

How to do a Push-Up:

Start facing the floor with your hands directly underneath your shoulders, legs extended behind you and the balls of your feet on the ground. Tighten your stomach muscles and butt as you bend at the elbows and lower your body until your chest touches the ground. Keeping your body tight and in a straight line, extend the arms as you raise your body to the starting position. Repeat.

 

  1. Crunches

Crunches are an easy and effective way to target your abdominal muscles, which are part of your core muscle group.

How to do Crunches:

Start lying face-up on the floor with your knees bent and feet flat on the ground. Place your hands beside your ears, keeping your elbows out wide to the side and your chin at least a fist’s distance from your chest. Tighten your stomach muscles and lift your shoulders off the ground while keeping your lower back touching the floor. Return to the starting position and repeat.

 

  1. High Knees

Last but not least, we have high knees. It’s a simple yet effective cardio exercise that raises your heart rate and tones your legs.

How to do High Knees:

Start by standing tall with your feet at a hip-width distance apart and arms at your sides. Drive your left knee to your chest, raising your knee to waist height, then quickly return your foot to the ground. Immediately do the same with your right knee and repeat on both sides.

Now that we’ve gone over the basics let’s grab some water and get started with the spring exercise routine. Remember to warm up first. Try an easy pace jog in place for a minute followed by jumping jacks.

 

Spring Into Summer Exercise Routine

Lower Body Workout

20 Squats

10 Jumping Jacks

20 Squat Pulses

10 Jumping Jacks

Rest 10 seconds

Repeat 3x

 

Upper Body Workout

10 Push-ups

20 High Knees

10 Tricep Dips

20 High Knees

Rest 10 seconds

Repeat 3x

 

Core Workout

20 Plank Jacks

20 Crunches

20 Plank Jacks

20 Leg Raises

Rest 10 seconds

Repeat 3x

I love to have a rest day along with some pilates and yoga days between the spring into summer exercise routines.

There you go, an easy to follow spring into summer exercise routine you can do anywhere. Depending on how much time you have, you can do one or two a day or all three. Alternately, you set a timer for ten minutes or however long you have and see how much you can get done in that time.

BONUS RECIPE!

 

Strawberry Rosemary Spritzer

Picture this. You’re sitting in a rocking chair out on the back porch, listening to some soothing music, and sipping from a tall glass of a refreshing drink. Ahh, spring is in the air!

A drink I like to make when the weather’s beautiful and I want something sweet and savory is my recipe for Strawberry Rosemary Spritzer. This drink is so yummy that I recommend you make a batch and keep a pitcher full in the fridge.

You won’t have to feel guilty drinking down a glass or two. Strawberries have many health benefits. They’re rich in antioxidants and support your immune system. Rosemary has anti-inflammatory compounds that can improve blood circulation, memory, and antioxidants to boost your immune system.

Play with the sweetness to find just the right amount for you. The recipe calls for one tablespoon of maple syrup, or if you prefer, you can substitute honey or a few drops of stevia.

Strawberry Rosemary Spritzer

Prep Time: 10 Minutes

Cook Time: 0 Minutes

Servings: 2

Ingredients:

  • 10 organic strawberries, cored and diced
  • 2 tsp fresh rosemary, finely chopped
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice, freshly squeezed
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup
  • 1 cup sparkling water
  • Ice

Directions:

  1. In a cocktail shaker, muddle the strawberries, rosemary, lemon juice, and maple syrup.
  2. Add water and ice. Shake to combine.
  3. Pour into two tall glasses. Top with a slice of strawberry and a sprig of rosemary. Enjoy!

 

What is your favorite way to stay active in the spring? What do you like to drink when it’s nice out? Share in the comments. I’d love to know.

Be Well & Thrive!

With Love & In Health,

Sarah Outlaw, MH, MSACN

-For more information on who we are and what we do at Natural Health Improvement Center of South Jersey and Natural Health Improvement Center of Des Moines, browse the rest of our website. We offer Nutritional Coaching, Nutrition Response Testing, Functional Nutrition, Herbal Medicine, and Homeopathy. We also offer detox services including an infrared sauna, and PEMF (pulsed electromagnetic field therapy mat, and foot bath(DSM office). We are on the front lines of wellness for you!

References:

  1. https://journals.lww.com/nsca-scj/Abstract/2018/12000/Optimizing_Squat_Technique_Revisited.10.aspx
  2. https://www.fitnesseducation.edu.au/blog/personal-training/how-to-push-up-proper-bodyweight-push-up-technique/
  3. https://www.healthline.com/health/fitness-exercise/sit-ups-vs-crunches#situps
  4. https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/266370.php
  5. https://www.irishexaminer.com/breakingnews/lifestyle/foodanddrink/6-amazing-health-benefits-of-eating-strawberries-and-their-tops-833375.html

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