Engaging Your Core
As you know if you have ever done a HIITit workout with us, we are ALWAYS talking about 'Engaging your core (EYC)' or saying, "pull your bellybutton in". Learning how to EYC properly will help you to get so much more out of your workouts by building some wicked strength that will serve you in a million ways. We can't underestimate a strong core!!!! A strong core makes daily life activities easier, helps with posture, helps with sports, can help prevent lower back pain, helps with better breathing, & can reduce your chance of being injured. Plus, how great to just feel strong there! Before your next workout, let's give this a quick practice. Wherever you're at, let's try this out!! First, cough once while holding your hand on your tummy. Feel that tightening. Replicate that & hold those muscles. Now while holding those muscles, suck your belly button in towards your spine (yep, at the same time!!!). Hold both of these. Lastly, we're going to engage our lower pelvic floor muscles. This flex can take practice!!! The best way to start is by tightening your bum muscles. Or, also think of stopping pee'ing midway:) Yep- there it is!! So now, it's these three processes at ONCE. Engage your upper core (as with a cough), pull in that belly button, then your pelvic floor. It sounds like pure craziness at first, but the more you practice these three movements together, eventually you will just get in the habit when exercising of engaging these areas of your core & you will reap the BENEFITS!!!! When you go in to your next 12 minute workout, take a few seconds before each exercise to "set your core". Feel your body tremble from all of your muscles working, but also feel how strong you are! Feel proud of that FORM!!!! As you keep on EYC during your workouts you are going to notice strengthening- in as soon as 4 weeks, and you're going to LOVE it. Now have fun mastering this!!
When exercising, it is always a great idea to have a mirror where you can see your entire body. This not only helps to see which muscles you are engaging, but also how your posture looks. If you visualize a string hanging from the ceiling, imagine that to have straight posture, your neck, spine and legs would align with the string. Basic proper posture is noted as ears over shoulders, shoulders over hips, hips over knees over heels. When exercising do your best to remain in good posture, focusing on shoulders back when in an upward stance with an open chest, and always working doing your best to maintain a strong core (as noted above).