Leg Day, 11/6/2014

Love the new background, Kara!  SMASHING.  Hey you’re getting in a lot of exercise!!  Are you planning to run the Turkey Trot this year?  (I ask, because well…you’re hitting the cardio pretty hard.  That’s awesome.  Tell me about spin!)  I wish I could do that race, but we’ll be out of town.  Maybe we should do the Santa Run together…

Anyway, met with a gym buddy (same one) yesterday, for the leg day workout below.  It’s been interesting working on legs with a buddy who has a bit less experience with olympic lifts.  I’m trying to keep it simple, and not be too bossy about form, but I don’t want her to get hurt!  So for now, we’re kind of sticking with some of the simpler lifts like deadlifts.  And when I say deadlifts are simple, I really mean that they’re simple in this case because they aren’t super heavy just yet.   In order not to overwhelm newbie friends with too much direction, I usually just say two things:

     “weight in your heels — you should be able to wiggle your toes”


     “your shoulder blades should be pinched together — this will help cue your body to maintain a straight back.”

I think just those two things are plenty to focus on, for a beginner.  Before we move on to heavier weight, we’ll need to master the other form cues too, like:

     “keep the bar close to your shins”

     “push your butt back — you should be bending more at the hip than the knees”

Anyway, I am excited to move back to tougher, heavier lifts like some overhead squats, back squats, and jerks… but these things take time.  I am not a professional either, so I don’t want to push “J” into anything dangerous!

Circuit 1

  • squat jacks: holding a 20-lb kettle bell at your chest, hop your legs wide and sink down into a squat.  Hop back up to standing with your legs together. (x15)
  • deadlifts with a small bar + 20 lbs (x15)
  • bridges on medicine ball:  your standard butt bridges, but with your heels balanced on a little (10-lb-ish) medicine ball (x20 + 10 second hold at the end)
  • russian twists with 15-lb kettle bell (x15 each side)
Russian Twist (source)

Circuit 2

  • reverse lunges + squats: starting on top of a step, lunge backward with one leg.  Then come back up onto the stop, and do a squat there.  We used two 10-lb dumbbells. (x10 each side)
  • clam shell exercise:  we didn’t have a resistance band, so we rested an 8-lb dumbbell on our knees for this.  (x15 each side)
  • wide scissor legs: lay on your back with your legs straight up in the air, perpendicular to the ground.  Open them wide enough to feel a stretch in your inner thighs, then bring them back together, slightly crossing over each other in the middle.  Alternate the direction of this cross on each rep. (x20)
  • sumo squat + calf raise:  holding a 20-lb kettle bell, do 15 sumo squats (see below).  On the last rep, stay low in the squat, but lift your heels to stay in a static squat/calf raise for 15 seconds.  You will shake.  And that is ok. No whining. (x15 squats + 15 second hold with calf raise)
Clam Shell Exercise (source)
Sumo Squat with Kettle Bell (source)

That’s all for now!



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