For the first piece of this Challenge, we're asking our Stroller Strides® and Body Back® moms to step up their game at class. This can mean a variety of things and be different for every woman so here are some ideas:
1. Attend more classes each week. Get into the habit of enrolling for classes - or making exercise plans with friends - on Sundays. You will be more likely to stick to those plans once you've marked your calendars and officially enrolled for class. *Our Stroller Strides® Unlimited Monthy Membership means each class is as little as $2.50 to attend and we now offer Body Back® drop-in classes, too! Click here for more info.
2. Run or jog at class. While Stroller Strides® is a power-walking based class, you always have the option to run or jog between stations. Commit to jogging in between just one station.
3. Use the red band. Sorry, Body Back® mamas, you don't have a choice on this one. However, you can control the resistance by how much you choke up on your band. The closer your hands are, the more resistance you have. For our Stroller Strides® crew, try doing one set of an exercise with the red band. Your instructor will be there to watch you to ensure that your form is correct and you are safely able to complete the moves.
4. Jump. Jump. Jump. Plyometric movements are explosive movements (such as squat jumps, plank jacks, and lunges with a hop, for example) that will add more power to your workout and increase the intensity of an exercise. In many cases, your instructor will offer this option to you during class. Take her up on it, try a few, and modify if you need to. Ladies with knee injury or pain, many plyometric exercises are higher impact and are not recommended. Try some lower impact plyos such as cushion kickers or high knees.
5. Planks, push-ups, and more; get off your knees and elbows! Just try. We are creatures of habit. Many people ask what is more difficult, planking on your elbows or your forearms. Some say this is personal preference (ie. wrist pain and susceptibility to wrist injury) and others say you are bearing more weight when on your forearms so that form is more challenging. Try both if you can as opposed to going straight to one or the other.
6. Think about your RPE. Rated Perceived Exertion is used to measure the intensity of your exercise. This is personal and not universal to every woman at class. Our instructors may ask you, "How are you feeling?" because they really want to know... and they really want you to adapt your exercise to how your body is feeling at any given moment during a particular exercise. Take ownership of how your body feels during class. If you find yourself just going through the motions, push yourself a little more. Modify up or modify down depending upon where your RPE is.
7. Listen to your body. This goes right along with RPE but we are asking you to ignore the "I CAN'T" running through your head during burpees. Your body is a powerful machine that is capable of doing much, much more than you may realize. Take great pride in what you can do if you just try.