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Fit For Summer

Are you one of those people who all throughout the year make the declaration that you will workout all year in order to get your dream summer body? Or perhaps you’re just getting into the fitness genre and looking for some really cool tips to stay fit. Which ever may be the case, I’m going to share a few beginner-to-intermediate exercises and yoga poses to help get you on the right track to begin your fitness journey.

I’m sure you’re wondering where to start. What should I wear? Do I want to break the bank purchasing workout apparel? Do I need to hire a personal trainer? We’ll let’s start with what you should wear. It’s imperative to have breathable workout apparel that is not too tight. This will be a must have to soak up moisture without the visible wet spots. As you may or may not know, Family Dollar carries apparel, but they also carry a fabulous new line called “Just Be” and the line has workout apparel. I know right? Let’s take a mini look inside my local Family Dollar store and let me show you what you can purchase to look Fabulous!

I’m sure you’ve passed by on a few times and more than likely shopped there but never walked around the corner to notice that they have an all-new apparel section. Did you know that they have workout tops and shorts for $5-8? Take a look!

Aren’t they super cute? I always look for apparel that will allow me to transition from working out in the gym or practicing on my mat to running an errand. My search for workout gear always consists of items that are both comfortable and fashionable. I went in Family Dollar to grab a few more pieces to add to my collection and I spotted these cute pair of shorts. In fact, they are referred to as Dolphin shorts, so I picked up a navy and grey pair that pair with almost anything.

I opted out of grabbing a work out shirt since it’s super hot here in Georgia, but instead I grabbed a Value 2 pack of the Just Be Intimates Sports Bra ($8) and a pack of men’s t-shirt to alternate with the shorts when I’m headed to the gym or when its raining outside.

Did I mention that the sports bras are so fashionable? You can pair them with a pair of pants as well. I can definitely wear them under a summer dress that’s cut low to add a pop of color and these bras give you an amazing push up! (Wink) (Wink).

So now that you have your super cute work out apparel, its time to get Fit For Summer. Lets start with a few easy exercises that you can do in the comfort of your own home.

Lets start with a low lunge. It’s super important to do lunges properly to avoid straining your joints.
  1. Remember to keep your upper body straight, with your shoulders back and relaxed.
  2. Step forward with one leg, lowering your hips until both knees are bent at about a 90-degree angle. Ensure that your front knee is directly above your ankle, not pushed out too far, and with this exercise its ok to let your foot touch the mat. Once your comfortable don’t let your knee touch the ground.

The High Knee Jog in Place is a great cardio workout. It works wonders for your quadriceps, calves & hamstrings.
  1. Begin in a knees bent position, feet shoulder-width apart, and your arms bent and at your sides.
  2. Flex the hip and bring your right knee up toward your belly button.
  3. As the right leg comes down, bring the left knee up.
  4. Alternate lifting the knees high as you jog in place.

Finally, let’s get some squats in to work that backside!
  1. Stand tall with your feet hip width apart and your arms down by your side.
  2. Start to lower your body back as far as you can by pushing your hips back and bending your knees while pushing your body weight into your heels
  3. As you are lowering into the squat, your arms will start to raise out in front of you for balance
  4. Keep a neutral spine at all times and never let your knees go over your toes
  5. The lower body should be parallel with the floor and your chest should be lifted at all times not rounded.
  6. Pause then lift back up in a controlled movement to the starting position

Easy right? Now lets add a little yoga into the mix to add a little variation and learn the benefits of each pose. Ready? Set? Go?

Let’s start with downward facing dog also known as Adho Mukha Svanasana. Benefits?
  • Calms the brain and helps relieve stress and mild depression.
  • Energizes the body.
  • Stretches the shoulders, hamstrings, calves, arches, and hands.
  • Strengthens the arms and legs.
  • Helps relieve the symptoms of menopause.
  • Relieves menstrual discomfort when done with head supported.
  • Helps prevent osteoporosis.

Next up is Shoulderstand, also known as Sarvangasana. Benefits?
  • Aids in digestion.
  • Helps relieve swollen legs.
  • Calms headaches or migraines
  • Helps relax the mind
  • Helps improve circulation to the upper body and brain.

Another great pose to do is the child’s pose AKA Balasana. Benefits?
  • Gently stretches the hips, thighs, and ankles.
  • Calms the brain and helps relieve stress and fatigue.
  • Relieves back and neck pain when done with head and torso supported.

These are just a few exercises and yoga poses that I do daily to stay fit. As a mom of three, sons ages 19, 13 & 9 years old, I find that I am always on the go attending events, games and traveling. It very important to me to stay in the best shape, eat healthy and have fun.

Shopping at Family Dollar for my fitness apparel and household items is awesome because it’s a one-stop shop and saves me money. If you are like me, you don’t want to worry about your hair so I grabbed a few bands to pull my hair up in a quick puff and to stay dry and fresh I also make sure that I have a box of Kotex thin liners along with some Summer’s Eve cleansing cloths in my gym/workout bag. Lastly, make sure that your lips stay hydrated by using the Aquafina Hydrating Lip Balm, which comes in four different flavors, and works wonders on my lips during these hot months.

You can continue to follow my fitness journey on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter. Always stay safe when starting a fitness regimen and never push yourself over the limits. And remember: It is better to stay safe than injure yourself.

By Turkesha McIvy, MPA

TWITTER: @Naturalbabydol

FACEBOOK: naturalbabydol

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