When you just hover in a plank, you work muscles isometrically (meaning the contraction is static). But you can make the move dynamic by working through a bigger range of motion to tone many additional muscles (like your shoulders, arms, chest, abs, butt, legs and more). US-based trainer Nora Tobin suggests these variations.
● FOREARM PLANK HIP DIP Start in a plank on forearms. Keep shoulders square as you rotate hips right and down to gently touch floor. Return to starting position; repeat on the left. Continue alternating sides for one minute. Repeat two times.
● SIDE PLANK PUSH-UP Start in a plank on palms. Do a push-up. Rotate into right side plank and reach left arm up. Return to starting position. Do a push-up and repeat on left side. Continue alternating sides for one minute. Repeat two times.
● REVERSE PLANK LEG LIFT Sit with legs straight, arms extended behind you, palms on floor with fingertips pointing forward. Squeeze abs and butt to lift hips so body forms straight line from shoulders to heels. Raise left leg [shown], then lower. Repeat with right leg. Continue alternating sides for one minute. Repeat two times.
YOUR POWER PLAYLIST
The same way We Will Rock You can rally fans at sports arenas, it can motivate you to crush your workout. Songs with such thumping bass lines make you feel more powerful, report researchers from the Northwestern University in the US. So a bass-centric playlist like this one may help you lift heavier weights at the gym – or feel more confident before a big event.
Boom Boom Pow Black Eyed Peas
Drunk in Love Beyonce
In Da Club 50 Cent
All About That Bass Meghan Trainor
Black Widow Iggy Azalea (featuring Rita Ora)
Break Free Ariana Grande (featuring Zedd)
Super Freak Rick James
With the Lights On Jason Derulo
Bang Bang Jessie J, Ariana Grande, Nicki Minaj
Wanna Say Kat Graham
Red Lipstick Rihanna
Give It Away Red Hot Chili Peppers
VENUS WILLIAMS, AMERICAN
PROFESSIONAL TENNIS PLAYER
REPEAT AFTER ME
“Just believe in yourself. Even if you don’t, pretend that you do and, at some point, you will.”
MAKE A SPLASH
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15% That’s how much more you’ll enjoy your workout if you listen to music.
SOURCE THE JOURNAL OF SP ORT AND EXERCISE PS YCHOLOGY
TO BOOST EXERCISE RESULTS NATURALLY…
SIP BEET JUICE New research from Kansas State University in the US found that beet juice can supercharge your workout if you drink just 70ml of a concentrated version two hours before exercise. The nitrite in beets increases blood flow to working muscles while making your mitochondria (the powerhouses of your cells) more efficient during exercise. This helps you to work out harder and for longer, says study author Scott Ferguson.
SKIP GRAPE JUICE Resveratrol, a nutrient found naturally in red grapes, has long been associated with enhancing the effects of high-intensity intervals, but a recent study by Queen’s University in Canada suggests that it may actually impede the body’s response to training. The researcher suspects it has to do with the nutrient’s antioxidant properties (in excess, outside sources of antioxidants can reduce the naturally occurring ones you’d otherwise get from exercise). If you’ve been taking resveratrol supplements to boost your workouts, no need. Just switch to beet juice.