Core Beliefs: Strengthen & Straighten Up

It seems everyone is in the holiday spirit. Your suggestions for tights and hats were great additions to the growing Holiday Gift Ideas for Runners list! You all would make awesome Santas.

We’ve been talking about improving performance and effectiveness of workouts and it all comes down to the heart core of the matter. Your core is crucial in everything you do — all day long. Core stability and strength does not mean chiseled abs, sorry Team Jacob. Core refers to the muscles of your abs and back that give you support, really these muscles extend to your upper and lower body.

It’s important we understand that our core muscles are the hub of our bodies strength. Having a strong core lends itself to making you more physically powerful in general, and for exercising and other simple physical activities.

Let’s talk conditioning your core:
Your joints will thank you during the long run: Women’s Health lists many reasons for building core strength, including, “It Reduces And Prevents Pain: A strong core stabilizes you and works like a natural brace for your joints.”
Suck it up, or “in”: This is one of the best tricks you can do right now! Suck in and perk up your posture. You can’t expect your middle to widdle if you leave it hanging out all day. (Show of hands if you just sucked in?:)
Stability Balls are your best friend: You can do many different exercises for your core on these bouncy Swiss balls. Grab a medicine ball and with a flat back on the ball try a Pelvic Tilt Crunch. The Swiss-Ball Knee Tuck is a personal fave, where you go into the pushup position with your shins resting on a Swiss ball, and straighten your legs so the ball rolls back.
Push Ups and Planks: These two p’s are things you can do right in the comfort of your home, or office if you are ambitious. When these moves are done correctly you are working your arms, chest, shoulders, abs and legs!

Looking for more core workouts, head over to Men’s Health “Stronger Where It Matters Most: Every muscle relies on your abs, hips, and lower back, a.k.a. your core. It’s your base–and your center of attraction. Here’s everything you need to sculpt a rock-solid midsection.

Work your way to a stronger core and you’ll not only find you’re better at sports, but you may find it easier to walk more confidently or put the star on the top of your Christmas tree.

What do you think is the most important muscle in your body? Any tips for improving posture and preventing slouching?

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12 responses to “Core Beliefs: Strengthen & Straighten Up

  1. My core is definitely not as strong as it once was, but we’re getting back to it! “(Show of hands if you just sucked in?:)” Yes, that was me. As I’m eating….awkward.

    Planks & yoga balancing poses are some of the best core-workers, in my opinion. We also have those exercise-ball-chairs at work – whoa, they do not let things “hang out”, ha.

  2. I have been trying SO HARD to focus on my posture while I’m at work, especially. It’s so easy to sit at my desk and slouch way down in my chair, not good! I totally agree that the core is so important to practically every single workout – and actually, it really is important to every workout. It keeps you stable and strong and safe!

    PS. I love planks…even though they suck, like whoa. haha

  3. This is a great post and love how straight forward it is! I make my clients do a ton of core exercises, despite them continually asking me to do sit-ups. I think the core is the most important to strengthen. You can never do enough planks. 🙂 Let me know if I can share this with my readers on Facebook. Thanks!

  4. Haha I just sucked in too! I realised recently how much worse I actually look when I slump in a chair, it looks so much better when I sit up straight! For some reason I also feel much more awake if I do that too. Weird!

  5. I don’t even know how I ended up here, but I thought this post was good.

    I don’t know who you are but certainly you’re going to a famous blogger if you aren’t
    already 😉 Cheers!

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