See Jane squat. Squat Jane Squat.

 

I recently attended a fitness conference where all the or self proclaimed gurus in the industry performed their newest top tier workouts for other elite athletes to take back to perform for their own clients.

These uber athletes were balancing so many things on a BOSU they made the performers in cirque du soleil look clumsy.
What a show!…
Until one of them lost balance and broke their ankle. Then all bets were off.
I found myself quietly paying tribute to Jane Fonda.
Jane. One of the most famous fitness icons.
Like Madonna did for pop culture and fishnets, Jane did for basic leg lifts.

That woman had it right on.

Why do we feel the need to reinvent the wheel? Or in this case the medicine ball? There is no reason to balance standing on your head blindfolded while juggling 3 BOSU balls on your toes.

Back to basics. Jane Fonda. Her simple aerobics and easy to follow routines actually worked. Why do we assume they are no longer effective?

Why are we always trying to reinvent new workouts? (The Multi-billion dollar fitness industry is telling us to that’s why!)

Have you ever walked into a gym class and felt like it took 20 minutes just to set up your equipment? Not to mention how much coordination you need just to perform all the moves that it seems impossible to actually master them.

Consider this: The same simple workouts that have been around forever actually do work. What if we dropped the fancy equipment and balancing act and did- gasp! dare I say it?:- basic aerobics and calisthenics???
Now I’m not suggesting you drop your gym memberships and take a stance against group exercise, however I am merely pointing out that its OK to just go for a basic run and do some basic squats and sit ups. Or take a yoga class or Pilates even though they are soooooo 2006.

Plyometrics have been around since the Greeks obsessed over their bodies

Remember Gilad? Another original back to basics fitness icon who made exercise TV popular. This Israeli born hunk made housewives feel like they were right there along with him and his solid gold dancer look alike crew doing aerobics in thong leotards on the beaches of Hawaii. Love how he always put his “Imma” right in front of the camera to encourage the over 50 crowd. He was another fitness pioneer who had it right. Simple easy to follow moves set to music and a glorious background. Very motivating.

I actually find these newer workout trends to be a major turn off. Some classes are so fast and frenetic that they make my head spin. How are beginners and even advanced exercisers supposed to feel good about joining a class that is so chaotic they can’t keep up? Exercise is supposed to make you feel better about yourself not make you feel like you just got eliminated from a bizarre version of dancing with the stars.

I work out in a boot camp twice a week. We do 30 second intervals of basic moves like pushups, squats, lunges and jump ropes with 10 second breaks in between. I work so hard in that 40 minute period that I can feel my heart jump out of my chest and hit the guy next to me. No fancy equipment. Just moving as fast as you can while keeping proper range of motion for 30 seconds. Most effective workout class I’ve taken in a while. Best part about it is you can do it anywhere… all you need is your own body weight.

Which brings me to my Balsam HOME move of the day:

Triceps dips on the bottom of your stairs. If you live in an apartment use a chair (just make sure it doesn’t have wheels on it. Trust me on this- All it takes is once to fall off a rolling chair and land on your tuchus to learn never to do it again.)

Sit with your back against the bottom stairs with fingers facing forward. Lift your body up with your hands while keeping arms in 90•degree angles as you use your arms to lower and raise your body. Keep your booty off the stairs and balancing hoevering over the stairs the entire time. Challenge yourself by sticking one leg out in front of you. Perform 20 reps. Stand up and squat for 30 seconds in between. Do 3 sets.
Then do 2 sets of 15 pushups. All it takes is 5 minutes for you to feel it.
Youll thank me once its tank top season (coming up!)

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