It’s October in New York and this day was a scorcher – 27 degrees! Since there are a few fantastic jogging routes around the gorgeous Central Park, I thought I’d go for a little explore; my ‘fitness curiosity’ got the better of me, and that turned into a 40 minute jog, after which I decided I wanted to finish off with some legs!! This post documents that leg routine, and be warned, it’s pretty gruelling, targeting all major muscles – hamstrings, quads and glutes – to tone, firm and strengthen thighs and bum! Unlike some of my previous leg posts, having just been jogging for the last 40 minutes this workout included no weights, just a park bench and some steps! That extra bit of added cardio should get you sweating and avoid shivering in the chilly ‘autumn’ weather! Really challenge yourself by keeping the rest period to a minimum – Weights not required, the combination of leg exercises is utterly exhausting!
Whilst we’re on the topic, if you’re thinking about taking up running I think it’s worth keeping a log book. By recording your performance you will be able to see how you’re improving and to potentially help avoid injuries, typically sustained when you try to go all-out for no reason. Analysing patterns can help you learn how your body responds to different intensities. Are you pushing your body too hard too soon, or may the opposite be the case? Are you letting your body recover properly? There are lots of apps to help you with logging your runs – so many that I plan to write a post about them! If you’re thinking you don’t take your running that seriously – try to at least record the distance, time and pace. Getting into the habit might just inspire and motivate you to run that extra mile, when the incremental exertion is the greatest My favourite thing about it? You get to set yourself / your friends challenges and to enjoy the fresh air whilst getting to know the city & countryside – sounds perfect!
Click below to see the full routine, shot in Central Park, New York.
A) Box/Step Jump Squats (as below pics)
1: Get in a half squat position with your arms in front of you.
2: Jump up and onto the steps.
3: Land in the middle of the bench, with quite a wide stance and do a deep squat.
4. Jump off the bench and repeat!
– 2-4 sets of 10-20 repetitions.
B) One leg step ups (as below pics)
1: Stand tall, facing parallel to the bench. One leg on the bench the other on the ground.
2: Kick off the ground as high as you can and twist your leg in front of you and touch your elbow to your knee.
3: Bring the same leg back to starting position, keeping the other leg firmly planted on the bench.
4: 10-20 reps on one leg, then swap!
– 2-4 sets of 10-20 repetitions on each leg
C) Split Lunge on a Bench (as below pic)
– Increase muscle strength in quadriceps & glutes, great way to focus on balance.
1: Stand with your back to the bench.
2: Lift and put your right foot, so the toe is on top of the front edge of the bench.
3: Step your left foot out in front of the bench.
4: lower your right knee toward the ground. This will cause your left knee also to bend. Lower your right knee toward the ground until your left knee is bent to a 90-degree angle.
– 2-4 sets 10-20 repetitions on each leg
– D) STAIR RUNS (as below pics)
The workout equivalent of ‘icing on the cake’… ultimate exhaustion of the legs to really finish you off!
1: Find a large, daunting staircase (though a small friendly one will work just as well)
2: Run up as fast as you can, ONLY taking one stair at a time, and for added exertion, lifting your knees to your palms
3: At the top, turn around gently jog back down, allowing gravity to help you with your micro-recovery.
4: At the bottom, repeat with full intensity, back up to the top.
– 3-5 sets, and then remember, ALWAYS MAKE SURE TO STRETCH AFTER YOUR WORKOUT :D.
Here are some more pictures from the Park and the shoot…
Shoes: Asics GEL KAYANO 19 – This shoe feels light. It’s very comfortable it’s cushioning made with ‘Fluid Ride technology’ – a 2-layered sole with improved bounce-back. Very comfy and quite pretty too
Pants: Asics WOMEN’S LEG BALANCE KNEE TIGHT,
Zip Top: Asics SEAMLESS JKT,
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