I have a set of exercises I do in order to really relax my muscles from riding. Because I do not cross train, except for mountain biking which allows me to maneuver my bike more fluidly than my road bike, I get all tightened up from repetitive use of specific muscle groups.
I woke up thinking about this and made a shake while starting my ab routine.
There was a website called exercise.tv a few years ago and I got addicted to an ab routine online. Apparently, you paid for each 20 minute program, but the first time was free. Anyway, they aren’t around anymore, but they did a great compilation called “Quick & Incredible Abs” and I ended up buying it on Amazon. 😉
**disclaimer. I did the abs routine for 1 month straight, maybe 30 minutes per day. I didn’t see much result in seeing a 6-pack suddenly appear, but I did hold my posture better and could finish all the exercises where when I first started, I got tired and sore after each workout. Only when I significantly changed my diet and began cardio for 45 minutes a day, minimum, did I see physical results. There is no “quick” way, just a new improved great way! 😉
Anyway, the routines are easy to intense and since I like to change things up, sometimes I lift weights while doing movements or skip to random exercises based on what ails me. (I used to be a dancer and rowed competitively in undergrad, so I understand basic lifting and posture and keeping myself safe from overextending my body.)
Anyway: here are some of my favorite exercises that I do.
Stability ball.Torso: hold ball at chest height, then drop 2 inches. Twist straight across to the right, face right, allow left leg to turn and heel to come up. Go the opposite way and suck in the belly the whole time. Great for warming up and stretching the whole back and midsection.
Stability ball.Hamstring: lay on your back with ankles resting on edge of ball. Arms at your side, lift your pelvis off the floor keeping your heels on the ball. Pull your knees inward, slowly, rolling the ball toward you, raising your hips higher. Breath out and extend your legs. (I usually do this barefoot so the ball doesn’t slip away from me.) This is a good hamstring stretch because it’s a hard muscle group to access if you only ride bikes. Your quads get overworked and poor hammies get neglected, ergo cramping and tightening ensue.
Planks: Both sides & basic. Flip from one to another for a few minutes. I try to do a deep yoga plank that drops your body from a push up stance to elbows bent, only hands touch the floor. Hold until I can’t stand it, drop down to the floor and stretch my back and neck into cobra position.
Standing Ab work with weights. Series of crunches, obliques at different intensities. Keeps me limber and gives me core strength.
Once I get warmed up, sometimes I jump rope for a few minutes or do jumping jacks. I like those because they remind me of being a kid and having fun, which reminds me, that I’m still having fun!
off to finish my smoothie!