There’s a little-known secret when it comes to sticking to a fitness routine. Lean in… I’ll whisper it in your ear: You need to find a motivation that’s more meaningful than fitting into a certain size. Vanity is just not a a powerful enough driver to keep you going when you hit a plateau, or when a happy-hour invitation happens to coincide with the yoga class you signed up for in advance.
That’s why fitness personality and trainer Natalie Uhling, creator of NuFit, focuses on ways to get stronger, fitter, healthier, and happier. Of course we all want to look good, but a toned body is just the bonus effect of taking great care of yourself for all of the right reasons.
In the video above, Natalie demonstrates five moves that will boost your energy level and your mood, all helping to make you feel sexy in the skin you’re in. It’s the perfect routine to dive into now, during Yahoo Health’s month-long Body-Peace Resolution campaign. Enjoy!
V-up Openers: Start by lying flat on your back with your hands above your head. Take a deep inhale, and as you exhale, fold in half at your hips. Lift your upper body, bringing your arms straight in from of you, and your legs, bent slightly at the knees. Slowly return back to starting position as you inhale. Repeat for a total of 3 sets of 10 reps.
Cross Jumps: Standing with your feet shoulder-width apart, sit down into a deep squat, booty engaged. After a big inhale, jump up on your exhale and crisscross your feet in the air. Land softly, sinking back down into a squat. Keep your glutes firing — all the power in this move should be coming from your booty. Try 3 sets of 15 reps.
Wood Chops: Start standing, with your feet shoulder-width apart, and your hands clasped together in a fist. Bend your knees and twist your upper body to the right. Bring your clasped hands to the right of your knees. Twist back up to the left, extending through your legs and abs. Raise your fist up and to the left, as if you’re swinging back up after chopping wood. Do 3 sets of 15 reps, alternating sides. This move helps squeeze the abdominal organs, and helps stimulate digestion and elimination.
Uppercuts: Start with your fists up by your eyes, and your feet shoulder-width apart. Inhale as you sit into the heels of your feet, knees slightly bent. As you exhale, bring your right fist out to uppercut, then your left. As you pick up the tempo, your feet should pivot and your torso should twist with each uppercut. Try this move for 30 seconds and repeat 3 times. Focus on your breath with this move — it’s the secret weapon when it comes to creating energy. The best athletes have insane breath control mixed with unbelievable mental toughness.
180 Sumo Burpees: It’s time to awaken the whole body with this high-energy move! Stand with feet shoulder-width apart. Drop your hands to the ground and jump your feet straight back. Your feet should still be shoulder-width apart — unlike in your traditional burpee — and your arms should be straight. Jump your feet back in toward your hands. Pop back up and jump, twisting 180 degrees, landing in a squat facing in the opposite direction. Once you’ve landed, jump back into a sumo burpee and repeat. Aim for 3 sets of 15 reps.
Body-Peace Resolution is Yahoo Health’s January initiative to motivate you to pursue wellness goals that are not vanity-driven, but that strive for more meaningful outcomes. We’re talking strength, mental fitness, self-acceptance — true and total body peace. Our big hope: This month of resolutions will inspire a body-peace revolution. Want to join us? Start by sharing your own body-positive moments on social media using the hashtag #bodypeaceresolution.
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