Question: My work schedule has changed and I will need to switch my workouts from evenings to early mornings. I’ve never been one to workout in the morning and need some advice on how to stick to my exercise program.
Answer: Changing your exercise time will be challenging at first, but since you already have exercise as part of your weekly routine these 3 tips should help you make the transition from evenings to mornings easier. Schedule in exercise like you would your dentist appointment or a work meeting. Write it down in your calendar or smartphone and set a reminder alarm for the night before. Be sure to review your calendar and ensure you can get plenty of sleep the night prior so your workouts are effective. Try moving your alarm to the other side of the room so you’ll have to get up and get out of bed to shut it off. Once you’re up it’ll be much easier to get moving. Give yourself enough time to eat a small snack (a banana, toast with peanut butter or a hand full of almonds) and drink coffee (if you normally do), plus drink at least one glass of water on your way to the gym. Lastly, lay out your workout clothes the night before and pack your gym bag so you are ready to go and can get out the door quickly and stress free. Exercising in the morning s a great way to get your day started and check a very important ‘to do’ off your list!
Question: Every once in a while my knees ache and I need to take a break from performing exercises like squats and lunges. Are there any other good leg exercises I can do to strengthen my legs without putting stress on my knees?
Answer: The hip bridge is a great body-weight exercise that you can do to strengthen your glutes and hamstrings all while working your core and stretching your hip flexors. An excellent swap or addition to your workout, this exercise can be done anywhere and with no equipment necessary. Lie on your back, knees bent, feet flat on the floor hip-width apart, arms relaxed at your sides. Squeeze and lift your glutes off the floor, pushing with your heels. Your body should be in a straight line from your knees to your shoulders. Hold this position for two seconds then lower back down to the floor. The hip bridge can also be performed with one leg by keeping one foot on the floor, lifting and holding the opposite knee towards the chest, and raising your glutes off the ground.