10 Minute Morning Workout - Exercise Ball
Don't feel like doing a full on workout but want to feel like you did something at least to just say you exercised? Try my simple morning workout. It's easy, quick and leaves you satisfied in knowing you exercised your core and legs.
2 lb. Ankle Weights (optional)
Proper Use of Exercise Ball
If you have never used an exercise ball before first get used to sitting on it. Make sure ball is properly inflated. Ease onto ball until you are placed in center of it. Do not jump or hop atop ball. Always make sure you are in center of the ball at all times to maintain an equal balance.
Once properly on ball sit with back aligned straight with hip and thighs at a 90 degree angle as well as your knees.
Warm Up - Shoulders
I first off warm up my arms and shoulders by doing a 5 count circular motion with my arms counterclockwise (forward) and then clockwise (backwards).
Warm Up - Hips and Sides
Shifting hip left and bringing left shoulder toward hip elongates and stretches out right side. Alternate and shift right hip out and bring right shoulder toward right hip stretching left side. Alternating quickly gets a slight bounce going and can loosen and warm up hips. Do a couple of times.
Abs and Legs
This exercise can be a little tricky. While sitting in an upright position with legs bent at a 90 degree angle, lift right foot from floor about 3 - 4 inches keeping knee bent. Tighten ab muscles. Starting with arms straight down, along with lifted foot lift and outstretch arms even with shoulders. Next, extend leg and at the same time raise your arms upward placing your hands in a praying-like position. Continue tightening abs. Hold for a few seconds. Bend knee in back to starting position with foot still raised from floor. Arms will go back in an outstretched position shoulder level. Place foot back down on floor. Arms go straight down placing you back at the position you started from. Switch sides. Do this 5 times per leg.
*Tightening abs can help you keep your balance.
Sides, Arms and Rear Stretches
While on knees, hold exercise ball between hands with arms outstretched. Keeping ball between hands, roll ball to right while maintaining outstretched arms. Keep hips in place, slightly pushing hips and rear down toward floor giving them a good stretch. Only torso should be moving to right. Hold stretches for a couple of seconds. Twist to other side. 2 stretchings per side.
Back and Abs Stretches
Sit upright on exercise ball. Slowly walk legs forward to where ball rolls to the lower portion of your back. Slowly lean back allowing the back to curve up against the ball. Reaching arms over your head toward the floor aim to touch the floor as much as you can. Stay in the center of the ball. Stretch for a couple of seconds. I do it longer than that sometimes because it actually feels good.
To sit back upright walk legs back toward ball. Place palms down on ball when you find it steady and comfortable to sit up erect again.
Working Obliques (Love Handles)
Get down on both knees. Roll ball under right armpit. At this point your right tricep should be on top of ball and your right side should be against ball. Right leg should be bent under your side and left leg should be stretched out. Left foot should be flat against floor. Left arm should be bent, elbow toward ceiling with left palm behind head. Once in position, lift torso to where the left elbow is going toward the left hip. Switch sides. Do this to a count of 15.
Continuing to stay in above position with leg elongated with opposite leg bent, slowly lift elongated leg while outstretched and slowly lower back down to starting position. This of course will work your inner thigh, outer thigh as well as your obliques. Do this to a count of 10.
Inner and Outer Thigh
Continuing in the position of the above exercise, keep top leg outstretched and slowly outstretch lower leg. Making sure your balance is secure, lift your bottom leg upward as far as it will go. You will feel the burn of both your leg's inner thigh. Switch sides. Do this to a count of 10.
To get up from position, roll onto back, walk legs forward until you are able to place your bottom on the floor. Place palm down on floor and stand up.
Abs and Obliques
Carefully lie on top of ball with knees bent. Place shoulder blades on ball. Bend arms and place palms behind head. Facing upward begin to do a crunch while on ball. Keep chin parallel and lift. Do a count of 10 crunches.
After crunches, walk legs backward toward ball until mid back is on ball. Pull knees apart shoulder width. Extend both arms upward with hands in a praying position. Fingertips should be aiming toward ceiling. Keeping your balance, roll over on left side while keeping arms outstretched. Keep hips facing toward ceiling only moving torso. Swiftly but carefully roll to opposite side. Going from one side to the other is a single count. Do a count of 15.
To get up from position, walk legs forward slowly until you are able to place your bottom on floor. While placing palm to floor, began to stand up.
Tightening Back Muscles
This seems tricky but is really simpler than it looks. Place stomach on top of exercise ball. Bend elbows and place palms behind head. Legs should be outstretched with feet shoulder width apart or farther. This will basically be a reversed abs crunch. Instead you will crunch your back. Tighten back muscles and abs and bend backwards as high as you can while staying in center of ball. Do this to a count of 10.
To get up from position, lay stomach down on ball once done. Lower knees to floor, raise torso upright and slowly get up one leg at a time.
*When on carpet feet may slide not allowing you to stay on the ball. Placing feet up against the bottom border of a wall can keep you in place.
A Little Weightlifting
To try and prevent the jigglies on my arms I incorporated a couple of reps of bicep curls and tricep extensions. To work biceps, keep abs tight and curl up and down with weights. To workout triceps, slightly lean forward. Start out with upper arm parallel to torso. From this position, raise upper arm toward ceiling about 3 - 4 inches away from torso. Extend lower arm outward keeping elbows in place. Then bend forearm back into starting position. Do reps for both biceps and triceps to a count of 10.
*When lifting weights, always slighty bend knees to protect knees and back.
Once you get the hang of these you'll get faster and faster at it making it a 10 minute or less workout. No this isn't going take pounds off necessarily but it will keep you toned and trim. This is just a little lift to go along with proper diet and exercise. Doing these minimal exercises each morning can help keep unwanted bulges and sags from showing themselves. It's also just a little something different you may want to incorporate into your own routine.
*Adjust count of repetitions and size of weights to fit what you can handle. And as always exercise safely and responsibly.