Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Wake Up, Work Out

Ed., for MSN Health & Fitness

It’s common to feel so frazzled that you let days—or even weeks—go by without fitting in a workout. Not only will the lack of regular exercise leave you feeling weak and fatigued, you’ll increase your health risks and may even find that unwanted inches start creeping on.

The solution, of course, is to find a way to fit fitness into your life.

But if dedicating an hour a day to exercise isn’t realistic right now, you can still stay in shape by doing the bare minimum. If you squeeze in a 10-minute workout every single morning, you’ll accrue the equivalent of more than three 20-minute workouts per week. And fitting in that extra 10 minutes of activity every day for a year will not only boost your health, but can lead to a 5-pound weight loss. So kick-start your day with these six upper and lower-body toning exercises.

The Workout:

  • Perform one set of 15 repetitions of each exercise, taking about one minute for each move (two minutes if you are doing one side at a time) and avoid pausing between exercises. Do this workout every day.
  • On days when you have slightly more time, do two or three sets of the moves. Or get your heart rate up by marching or jogging in place for 30 seconds to 1 minute in between exercises.
  • Modify this workout to match your fitness level. Follow the recommended moves, or adapt them as needed to make them easier or more challenging.

What you need: Your body—out of bed—and 10 free minutes. Click here to get the moves.

This diet and exercise program should not be followed without first consulting a health care professional. If you have any special health conditions requiring attention, you should consult with your health care professional regularly regarding possible modification of this program.

Martica is a Manhattan-based exercise physiologist and nutritionist and an award-winning fitness instructor. She has written for a variety of publications including Self, Health, Prevention, The New York Times and others. Martica is the author of seven books, including her latest, Cross-Training for Dummies.


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