Happy Monday!

I hope everyone had a lovely weekend. We finally had some sunshine this weekend here in Boston. I celebrated my Italian heritage on Sunday and made it down to the north end for St. Anthony’s Feast. I may or may not have had an eggplant parm sub. (I did, and it was ahhhsome.) It was a lovely day and I got in about 3 hours of walking with some friends around the city. Sometimes it’s nice to not have a formal workout on the weekends but rather just get out and do something physically active. That can be the best physical AND mental recovery for a long week of working hard in the gym and in the office.

However, we’re somehow back to Monday and it’s time to get back at it!

Here’s your WUOTW:

1. Knee banded side lying clams- Glute activation, glute medius activation

Lay on your side with a mini band around your knees. Bring your knees to your chest so your hips and knees are at 90 degrees. Make sure your hips, knees and feet all stay stacked (especially when you start moving). Keep your feet together and open your knees. This should not be a big range of motion; you should feel the burn on the side of your butt after a few reps. Perform 10-15 per side.

2. Supine 45 degree leg lowers- active hamstring stretch, core activator, tri-planar movement

This is a progression from the standard leg lowers. Instead of going straight down with the moving leg, you’re going to bring it slightly out to 45 degrees. You will feel this more in the inner and outer thigh. Repeat 10x/side.

3. T-spine extensions on Foam Roller- Tspine mobilization

Start with the foam roller wedged at the top of your low back. Knees bent, feet flat, butt on the floor, support your head with your hands. Let gravity do the work and lean back as far as possible. This probably will feel pretty uncomfortable. Repeat 5 times, roll the FR up a couple segments toward your head. This position will feel better and more mobile than the first.  Repeat another 5 times.

Warning: Be cautious that you’re not using your lumbar spine for extension, which looks like this:

Substituting lumbar extension for thoracic does no good.

Prevent that by contracting your abs and exhaling as your go backwards. This will lock your lumbar into place and force to use your t-spine for extension.

4.  Slow motion single leg mountain climber- core + upper body activator, hip flexor activator, movement prep for step-ups

Use a slider or sock

Put yourself in plank position with 1 toe on a slider. Slowly bring your knee to your chest as far as possible without letting your low back curve under. Repeat 10x/side.

5. Body weight step ups- – glute, hamstring, quad, and core activator

Pick a height were you can step up without excessive forward lean. Make sure you’re using your glutes and hamstrings and push your butt back when you step down. Try to load your knees as little as possible.