By NOEL B. PABALATE
Having “no time” is one of the reasons people don’t exercise. But now that we’re in community quarantine, spending more time at home, no more excuses, right?
Oh, no gym? And you have to work at home? Maybe an easy 10-minute workout wouldn’t hurt, right? It would take less effort and time than your usual daily commute to the office. So enough with the excuses and get your body moving.
Regular exercise is an immune system booster. A 10-minute workout could be a lifesaver. Short exercises could also be a sanity-saver during this lockdown season.
The Manila Bulletin resident fitness coach Gino Mercado and his twin brother Dino suggest three simple and easy exercises you can do at home for 10 minutes.
“The three cover upper body, lower body, and a core workout. This is done as many rounds as possible (AMRAP) to increase heart rate. It is a combination of anaerobics and aerobics oxygen pathways so you get the best of both worlds,” Gino explains.
It’s about going back to the basics, the fundamentals that are very beneficial. You don’t need any gym equipment. Your body weight is enough to keep those muscles working. Here’s how you do them.
Start with a plank position with hands shoulder-width apart, and feet and legs close together. Tilt your pelvis backward and keep your butt squeezed tight to keep your torso and legs straight. Don’t lower your head so that your neck stays neutral. Bend your elbow so that chest and hips go down the floor. Then press up locking your elbows, squeezing your chest and triceps, and engaging your core. To modify it, you can raise your leg up and put your knee on the floor while pressing up and bending elbows to go down. You can start with five repetitions.
Benefits: Push ups strengthen your upper body (chest, triceps, and shoulders), core muscles, and promote bone density, while helping improve posture.
Butterfly Sit Ups
Lie down on the floor with shoulder blades touching the ground, hands placed above your head, the soles of your feet flat together, with your knees to the side as legs and thighs are spread out, forming a butterfly-shape. Sit up using your abs then tap the floor in front your feet. Then slowly go back to the starting position. To scale-down this movement, you can bring your knees together, then while lying down you can just raise your arms and crunch. You can perfect it with 10 repetitions.
Benefits: Compared to basic crunches, butterfly squats give a full range of motion rather than flexing the abdomen to strengthen your core. It stretches your hips and improves back flexibility, too. It also helps improve digestion.
Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart, toes slightly out. Keep your feet planted on the ground then bring your hips and body down as low as you can while bracing your core. Keep your chest out as you raise your arms for balance. Then come back up without locking your knees. If you have knee problems, you may squat just parallel to the floor. You may use a chair to sit and stand to modify the exercise. Good for 15 repetitions—that’s peanuts.
Benefits: It targets your lower body, which includes your thighs, hamstrings, quadriceps, and glutes. Squats engage your core muscles too. This is a simple yet effective exercise to improve your balance and build solid strength foundation to execute full-body movements.
For 10 minutes, do as many sets as you can to boost your immune system.
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