When Outi invited me to write to her blog I felt honored: a lot of people come to my classes, but few are so interested and driven as Outi. Thank you for inviting me! I’m not a writer, but I’ll do my best to give you all some great tips.
So, as requested, I will start talking about myself. I’m a Brazilian Physiotherapist and Fitness Trainer, licensed in BodyPump, BodyCombat, BodyJam, Sh’bam, Zumba, Zumba Toning, Aqua Zumba, Pilates, Spinning, etc. I have been working in Finland for 4 years now, but also worked in Brazil, Argentina, Germany and Austria. Since August 2012, my husband and I opened a Functional Training Fitness Center in Viitasaari, called Movimento Kuntokeskus. You can check us out at www.movimento.fi.
My training tip is about Functional Training. Functional training has its origins in rehabilitation. Physical therapists often use this approach to retrain patients with movement disorders, as functional training attempts to adapt or develop exercises which allow individuals to perform the activities of daily life more easily and without injuries, allowing them to recover and pursue normal life. Functional strength training involves performing work against resistance in such a manner that the improvements in strength directly enhance the performance of movements so that an individual’s most common activities are easier to perform. Simply stated, the primary goal of functional training is to transfer the improvements in strength achieved in one movement to enhancing the performance of another movement by affecting the entire neuromuscular system. In the fitness context, functional training involves mainly weight bearing activities, usually targeted at core muscles of the abdomen and lower back, but that can be extended for a full body workout. In Functional Training, every movement involves a large set of muscles, allowing you to improve the strengh, balance, condition, and muscle mass, safely and creatively.
It is a great way to workout, no doubt about it. But the best part of it is that you can do it anywhere, any time. I will give you a full body workout that you can do at home, while on vacation, anytime you want to get/keep fit, quick and effective.
You don’t even have to buy weights: in some of the photos I’m using Gymstick’s Fitness Bags, but you can get a normal bag and fill it with clothes, books, anything that gives you the weight you need, and keep it confortable to handle. You will also use a chair, a small bench or box, and you can fill bottles with sand, just be creative about the weight you will use.
And if possible, do everything in front of the mirror, so you can see your technique and make sure you are doing it right.
Using the bag, do squats, lunges and side squats. I usually prefer to work with time limits, so I highly recommend you do as many repetitions as possible in 1 min. This way, you can always challenge yourself and try to do a bit more than the day before. Try to always keep your knees in a max of 90°, so you don’t force them and avoid injuries. You can also do inverted squats (also called “bench squats”). For that, you will need a low bench (a hard box would also work). Grab your heavy bag (or a pile of books) and sit on the bench, keeping your knees open and back straight. Then stand up, avoiding as much as possible to use your back for it. Repeat as many times as possible in 1 minute. This is great for gluteo and back of the tighs.
Other great exercises for legs are the side press and back leg extension. You can see in the photos what I mean (I hope!). In the case of the side press, keep the movements small and tense. If you do it right, you should feel the sides of your legs burning (it works like the abdural/addural moves).
I’m a big fan of push ups, in all shapes and forms. You can alternate it using 1 min in normal push-ups (hands as open as the shoulder level); 1 min open push-ups and 1 min with closed hands. There is not much to say in this one, but believe me, it works wonders. And try the “men” ones, of course. And if you need a plus, support your feet on a box or bag, keeping them higher. This will do the trick.
You can also do press ups (pystysoutu and pystypunerrus) using the bag. It works wonders for shoulder.
This one I will keep very simple: do bicep rolls using your heavy bag. Be strong and work 1 min each hand, being careful to count, so you work them equally.
Remember that chair I told you to have in hand? You will use it now. Do dips, with extended legs, for 1 minute. If this is easy, put the bag or small box you used before under your feet. It will increase the difficulty level. It is hard, but very effective. Be careful to keep your hips close to the chair and your elbows should go to 90° when you and pressing down.
This is my favorite part. There are so many ways of doing abs, but I’ll point you my favorite ones here.
Start the first minute doing scisors (linkku, I guess). You don’t need to stand the legs, but your back needs to leave the floor. If this is too hard, try a simple sit-up. That works as well.
Use your second minute to do side spinning abs. Do it slowly and extending your legs. Try to avoid going too fast and/or keeping the cycle small. This is one exercise that is harder when you do slowly. Your elbow will touch the opposite leg, and you will feel your whole vatsa burning. Great one!
For lower back, do 1 min superman (you don’t need the extra weight as I use in the photo, necessarily, but it can be nice too).
And we will finish it with plank and side plank. 1 minute each. I know you don’t always like doing it, but believe me when I say it: you will love the results!
If you do it all as indicated in here, you will have a full workout in 20 minutes. It is great for people with no time and you will feel your fitness level improving daily!
Merry Xmas and Happy (and Fit) 2013 to you all!
After starting zumba 2009 I got very early the feeling that I should see many different instructors and people to do things differently. You were if not the very first then one of the first that I came to see on purpose. It gave me so much inspiration and I started to see how much possibilities there is in the world of excercise.
Patty you have the move and beat in you. I really hope I can come to Movimento some time.
I totally have to combine my two hobbies geocaching and training so that I can start to travel on purpose to see you all inspiring people around Finland to see you in your own training places. Perhaps that is the idea for next year…
And this workout you gave I will do bit later, because we have a christmas party today.
Patty, Merry Xmas and Happy New year to you also.