Muscle-strengthening activities are an important part of any movement routine. They can contribute to your weekly physical activity goals while also helping you feel stronger and making everyday life a little bit easier. The weekly workouts are designed to be short and modifiable so you can tailor them to your activity level and goals.
This week, the workout is designed to strengthen your whole body!
Week #1: Total Body
- Rest 15 seconds after completing each movement before starting the next one.
- Aim to complete each movement 3 times. You can complete all 3 sets for one movement before switching to the next, or complete 1 set of each and then repeat all 5.
Bodyweight Squat – 16 repetitions OR 45 seconds
- Modification: Hold onto a chair, table, or another stable surface for support. Use your upper body to assist slightly by “pulling” up while also standing through your legs.
- Challenge: Lower into the squat for a 4-second count, pause for 2 seconds and return to standing for a 4-second count. You could also try bringing your feet together to perform narrow squats or jump squats.
Plank – 45 seconds
- Standing Option: Place your hands against the wall for support. Position your feet so that you are leaning forward slightly. Think about squeezing your belly button towards your spine to engage your core.
- Modification: Try placing your forearms or hands on a waist-high surface like a stable chair or lowering your knees to the floor.
- Challenge: Try a plank march by moving one arm from your forearm position to a straight arm position, followed by the other, and then lowering back to your forearms. Alternate the arm you begin with. You could also try slowly raising and lowering one leg at a time while holding the plank.
Good Morning – 16 repetitions OR 45 seconds
- Modification: Perform from a seated position.
- Challenge: Hinge at the hips and lower the chest to the floor for a 4-second count, pause for 1 second, and extend back to standing for a 4-second count.
Front Raise & Lateral Raise – 16 repetitions OR 45 seconds
- Alternate 1 front raise and 1 lateral raise until you reach 16 total repetitions (8 of each).
- Modification: Raise one arm at a time and/or perform from a seated position.
- Challenge: Pause for a few seconds at shoulder height before lowering your arms back to the starting position.
Bird-Dog – 16 repetitions OR 45 seconds
- Standing Option: Place your hands against a wall for support. Position your feet so that you are leaning forward slightly. Extend one leg away from the wall and reach the opposite arm up towards the ceiling.
- Modification: Lift and extend one arm, lower, then lift and extend your opposite leg.
- Challenge: After extending, perform a crunch by touching your elbow to your opposite knee under your stomach and then lower both to the ground.
Make sure to stretch before you call your workout complete! Here are a few ideas:
- Child’s Pose
- Triceps Stretch
- Stretches You Can Do in Your Office (seated stretches)
You might also enjoy:
Essential Tips for Taking Breaks During Work
Quick Tips for Staying Active during the Fall Season
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6 thoughts on “Holiday Challenge Week #1 Workout”
So out of shape, simple exercises are exausting
We would recommend modifying the workouts to meet your current needs. Increase your activity levels gradually, especially if this is the beginning of your fitness or resistance journey. Take into account where you are now and add movement to your routine in small increments.
I have read that “Good Mornings” put a tremendous amount of pressure on the lower back and are not recommended by physical therapists. This holds true as well for deadlifts.
What are your thoughts?
Hi Janet, thanks for commenting. We would recommend modifying any workouts to meet your individual needs. Feel free to swap out the “good mornings” for another exercise that works better for you!
I love these programs. They have helped me eat smarter and lose weight throughout the year. Thank you so much.
I’m very excited about starting the challenge again tis year. I love the exercises and recipes you include in the site, along with all the other information.
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