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BCRPA Weight Trainer * BCRPA Group Fitness Leader * BCRPA Personal Trainer * Cory Holly Institute Principles of Sports Nutrition Education Program * Body Training System Group Power Instructor *Body Training System Group Centergy Instructor * CORE Conditioning Instructor * TKO Fitness Instructor * Boot Camp Leader

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Training Tuesday - Wall Sit

It's time to build up our leg muscles, specifically - the quadriceps.

The wall sit (sometimes referred to as the Roman chair) is a great exercise to strengthen the quadriceps and build endurance in the lower body. All done, while not moving!

This is a static exercise (non-moving) with a focus on a isometric contraction (muscle fibers are contracted but not moving). This is important because this is how we increase our strength but mostly, how we begin to build endurance.

For individuals with knee problems, this is a great alternative to a full range squat or lunge. For first timers working out, this is great to get your alignment down properly before doing a squat on your own.

How to do a proper wall sit:

Stand with your feet hip width apart, a few inches in front of you and your back against the wall.
Keep the shoulder blades and hips pressed against the wall as you begin to slide the body down into a squat position.
As you squat down, your feet will move out far enough that the ankles stay just below your knee joint. If your knee is above your toes, you have come too far.
Ideally, you want to come down enough so your hips and your knees form a 90 degree angle. (beginners may want to decrease that a little bit, 45-80 degrees)

Some people prefer to have their hands on the side of their hips. Others press palms against the wall behind them. You can also have them raised in front of you or even above your head. All these variations will increase or decrease the intensity level of the squat by adding more muscle work to other parts of your body which in turn make the whole body work more. Get creative with your wall sit!

How long do you want to hold the position?
If it's your first time EVER doing any exercise, try for 10 - 15 seconds.
If you're not new to exercise but this is your first time doing this, try for 30+ seconds.
As you get stronger, add 5-10 seconds to the hold to keep up with your increasing endurance levels!


For those coming from an injury, especially in the low back, may want to modify this movement. Place an exercise ball between your back and the wall. Use the ball as your wall support instead. This will help position the back in a way so that it is more supported and you should be able to do the wall sit normally.

If you have painful knees, don't sit down as low as 90 degrees. Keep it just under that to keep pressure off the knee joint. If pain persists, stop doing this exercise and consult your physician immediately.

Until next time Team, keep working on those killer legs--shorts season is upon us!
Health respect & happiness,

Monday, March 26, 2012

Mommy Monday: A "Weighty" Issue

As you finish your first plate of food, has this occurred to you: "I'm eating for two, I should go for seconds, or even thirds!"?
I'm sure it has, if not - there will be a friend or family member who will make this claim for you. This statement needs to be carefully looked at.
First, it's true, you are eating for two in that all your food choices with directly affect your growing baby. But, it's false, in that you are eating for two grown adults, so no, you shouldn't be packing it in like it's your last meal. Remember, your baby is barely a quarter of your size.

"How Much Weight Should I Gain?"

You must understand that everybody is different. The rate and speed will vary from person to person so just because you're two best friends gained all their weight at the very end, doesn't necessarily mean you will too. Here is what's recommended for most healthy women:

Underweight (Below 90% of desirable weight)
Suggested Gain: 28-40 lbs
Weekly Gain in 2nd & 3rd trimesters: > 1 lb

Normal weight
Suggested Gain: 25 - 35 lbs
Weekly Gain in 2nd & 3rd trimesters: .8 - 1 lb

Moderately overweight (More than 120-135% of desirable weight)
Suggested Gain: 15 - 25 lbs
Weekly Gain in 2nd & 3rd trimesters: .7 lb

Very overweight (More than 135% of desirable weight)
Suggested Gain: 15 - 20 lbs
Weekly Gain in 2nd & 3rd trimesters: .5 lb

Keep in mind, these are just guidelines. There will be special cases where women will need to gain more, or less for some others. For example, a women carrying twins will need to gain about 35-45 lbs. Your doctor should be able to give you advice on your own weighty issue.

So, Where Does The Extra Weight Go?

Here is a little breakdown:
Baby: 7-8 lbs
Placenta: 1-2 lbs
Amniotic fluid: 1 1/2-2 lbs
Uterine tissue: 2 lbs
Breast tissue: 1-2 lbs
Fluid volume: 6-10 lbs
Fat: 6+ lbs
Total: 25-35 lbs

Next time, we'll look at some nutritional requirements needed to help you stay on top of your game during this journey!

Health respect & happiness,