A Better Body in 5 Minutes
You can accomplish a lot in 5 minutes, and this arm-building routine is proof. To do this workout, simply pick any two exercises that target your arms: one for your biceps and another for your triceps. As an example, you might choose the EZ-curl-bar curl (biceps) and the dip (triceps). For either, select the heaviest weight that allows you to complete eight to 10 repetitions, and then alternate between the exercises, doing sets of five or six repetitions without resting. It's not uncommon to do four or five sets of each. And this means you'll be logging a total of eight to 10 sets of challenging arm work in just 5 minutes.
Perfect Your Posture
Sitting hunched over a keyboard for 10 hours a day trains your muscles and connective tissues to adapt to that position, adding a hunch to your posture. But you can unravel your slump with an exercise called the prone cobra, which helps counteract the damage of your daily grind.
How to do it: Superman
Lie face down on the Theragear Core Disc with your arms stretched above your head (like superman) Raise both of your arms and one leg about 5-6 inches off the ground (or as far as you comfortably can). Hold for 15-30 seconds and relax. Repeat with the opposite leg. If you can raise both arms and legs and hold for 15-30 seconds and relax econds, rest for 60 seconds, then repeat two more times, for a total of three sets.
Banish Back Pain
"Lower-back problems often stem from tight gluteal muscles," says Adam Francella , a personal trainer in Maple Ridge, BC. His solution: a foam roll "Your muscle tissue is like a rubber band. If it has a bunch of knots in it, you won't be able to stretch it very far," says Green. By using a foam roll to alleviate these knots, you'll make your muscles more pliable--and quickly relieve back pain.
How to do it:
Sit on a foam roll on the floor, with your feet up and your hands on the floor for balance. Now slowly roll your butt over it, stopping on the tenderest spots (these are knots) for 20 to 30 seconds or until the pain subsides.
Pump Up Your Pecs
This workout plan is designed to trigger a growth spurt by maintaining tension on your chest muscles for a full 5 minutes. Make sure to use a timer---you'll need to know when to stop.
How to do it:
Pic: Dumbbell Incline Flyes with TheraGear® Swiss Ball Pro
Exercise 1: Dumbbell Incline Fly
With feet on floor and legs bent, place shoulder blades on ball so your upper body is in an incline position. Holding a dumbbell in each hand, begin with arms slightly bent. Without changing the bend in your elbows, lower the weights out to your sides. Reverse the motion to return to the start.
Do one set of eight reps.
Don't release the weights; hold them straight above your chest, and rest for 15 seconds in that position.
Do as many more repetitions as you can
Rest for 15 seconds, then move on to exercise 2
Exercise 2: Dumbbell Incline Press
Hold the weights above your chest with your arms straight. Bend your elbows to lower the weights to the sides of your chest. Pause, then push the weights up.
Do as many repetitions as you can.
Rest for 15 seconds with the weights held above you.
Do as many more repetitions as you can.
Rest for 15 seconds, then set the weights down and move on to exercise 3.
Exercise 3: Wide-grip Pushup
Get into pushup position, but with your hands placed about twice shoulder-width apart.
Do as many pushups as you can.
Rest for 15 seconds and keep repeating until your 5 minutes are up.
The 5-Minute Six-Pack
If you do only crunches, you're shortchanging your abs. Why? Because in addition to flexing your trunk -- as you do in a crunch -- your core muscles also allow you to flex your hips, rotate your body, and stabilize your spine. So for the best results, you need to target each of these functions. To hit them all in about 5 minutes, do one set of each exercise below in the order shown, with no rest between.
Assume a pushup position, but place your forearms on the floor or for extra challenge use 2 Theragear Core Discs. Brace your abs as if you were about to be punched in the gut, and hold for 30 seconds.
Lie on your left side and prop your upper body up on your left elbow and forearm. Then raise your hips until your body forms a straight line from shoulders to ankles. Brace your abs for 30 seconds. Then repeat on your right side.
Side Plank using Theragear® Core Disc
Abdominal Crunch on Swiss Exercise Ball
One-Arm Prone Bridge with Feet on Swiss Exercise Ball
Oblique Crunches with or without Medicine Ball on Swiss Exercise Ball
Do 15 repetitions