Have No Fear! Your Pre-Thanksgiving Workout Plan is Here!



Does it ever seem like the holiday season arrives before we know it? I have to admit, it sure feels that way to me, especially as the years go by. Like most people the plan to consume a delicious Thanksgiving Day meal is probably on the agenda this holiday season. Let’s take a look at how we can create a pre-Thanksgiving workout plan to prevent weight gain and enjoy tasty family recipes. Get ready to break out that Total Gym, fire up those muscles, and get moving to avoid gaining unwanted holiday pounds!

Day 1 – Cardio

  • Cardio exercise for a minimum of 30 minutes (Includes running/jogging outdoors, treadmill, elliptical, bike, etc)

Day 2 – Total Gym Upper and Lower Body Workout

Squat with Toes Out 

  • Disconnect the pulley from the glideboard and stow handles.
  • Push the glideboard halfway up the rails, straddle the rails and sit at the bottom edge facing away from the tower.
  • Place feet toward the top of the squat stand with toes pointing outward on each side.
  • Slowly lie back, ensuring head is fully supported by the glideboard.
  • Rest hands on the sides on the glideboard or cross arms over the abs.
  • With a neutral spine position, slowly lower the glideboard by bending both knees and hips to around 90 degrees.
  • Press the feet into the squat stand ensuring the knees are tracking over the toes.
  • Perform two sets of ten to twelve reps with a short break in between.

Bridge Squat with Ball

  • Disconnect the pulley from the glideboard and stow handles.
  • Push the glideboard halfway up the rails, straddle the rails and sit at the bottom edge facing away from the tower.
  • Place feet toward the top of the squat stand, positioned shoulder width apart.
  • Slowly lie back, ensuring head is fully supported by the glideboard.
  • With a neutral spine position, slowly lower the glideboard by bending knees and hips to approximately 90 degrees.
  • Place a soft small ball in between the knees and slowly squeeze the ball with the knees pressing inward while raising the glutes upward to form into a bridge position.
  • Hold the bridge position for approximately one to two seconds, then slowly return to the starting position while lowering your glutes and legs back down towards the glideboard.
  • Perform two sets of ten to twelve reps with a short break in between.

Cardio Pull Exercise

  • Grasp handles to bring glideboard halfway up the rails.
  • Facing away from tower, straddle the rails and sit toward bottom edge of the glideboard.
  • With tension in cables, slowly lie back, ensuring head is fully supported and place heels on the squat stand.
  • Bend elbows and bring handles to shoulder height with palms facing in towards each other.
  • Perform two sets of fifteen reps with a short break in between.

Iron Cross with Pulley Attached

  • Grasp handles to bring glideboard halfway up the rails.
  • Facing away from tower, straddle the rails and sit toward bottom edge of the glideboard.
  • With tension in cables, slowly lie back, ensuring head is fully supported and place heels on the glideboard.
  • Bring handles to the thighs with palms facing in raise your arms out to the sides in a cross position.
  • Perform two sets of fifteen reps with a short break in between.

Overhead Tricep Press

  • Grasp handles to bring the glideboard halfway up the rails.
  • Facing away from the tower, straddle the rails and sit toward bottom edge of the glideboard.
  • With tension in the cables, lift feet off the floor and position heels at bottom edge of the glideboard.
  • With elbows raised upwards towards the ceiling slowly press the handles back then upwards by using your triceps to extend the elbows.
  • Perform two sets of ten to twelve reps with a short break in between.

Pullover Crunch with Variations

  • Grasp handles to bring the glideboard halfway up the rails.
  • Facing away from the tower, straddle the rails and sit toward bottom edge of the glideboard
  • With tension in the cables, lift feet off the floor and position heels at bottom edge of the glideboard.
  • Slowly extend arms overhead with a slight bend in the elbows, palms facing up.
  • In an arc motion, bring handles over the chest and reach over the knees by raising the head and shoulders off the glideboard. Keep the abs engaged as hands return in an arc motion back to the starting position.
  • Add variation by driving both hands to the right side of your body repeated by driving both hands to the left side of your body.
  • Perform two sets of ten to twelve reps with a short break in between.

Torso Rotation

  • Grab both handles to bring glideboard up the rails.
  • Stand facing away from the rails and anchor the handle down near the top edge of the glideboard.
  • Sit back facing sideways into a secure position.
  • With tension in the cable, slowly raise the feet off the floor and lift the handles away from the glideboard. Clasp one handle in each hand and position the elbows at the sides of the torso.
  • Sitting tall, drive both hands across the waist towards the squat stand while returning back to the tower.
  • Perform two sets of ten to twelve reps with a short break in between.

Stir the Pot 

  • Grab one handle to bring glideboard up the rails.
  • Stand facing away from the rails and anchor the handle down near the top edge of the glideboard.
  • Sit back facing sideways into a secure position.
  • With tension in the cable, slowly raise the feet off the floor and lift the handles away from the glideboard. Clasp one handle in each hand and position the elbows at the sides of the torso.
  • Sitting tall with abs engaged, begin to perform a circular motion with the hands in front of the waist similar to stirring a large pot.
  • Perform two sets of ten to twelve reps with a short break in between.

Day 3 – Cardio

  • Cardio exercise for a minimum of 30 minutes (Includes running outdoors, treadmill, elliptical, bike, etc)

Day 4 – Total Gym Upper and Lower Body Workout

  • Total Gym Upper and Lower Body Workout (Repeat Day 2 Workout)

Day 5 – Cardio

  • Cardio Exercise minimum of 30 minutes (Includes running/jogging outdoors, treadmill, elliptical, bike, etc)

Day 6 – Mind/Body Class (Includes yoga, stretching, tai chi)

;Day 7 – Rest Day

 

Prevent Weight Gain with a Healthy Starter

Low Calorie Thanksgiving Spinach Salad 

Serves 4

How about preparing a healthy and refreshing spinach salad to complement all the delicious side dishes on Thanksgiving Day? This delicious creation includes creamy avocado, crunchy bell peppers, and a healthy homemade dressing. Family members and guests will appreciate this healthy starter prior to carving into the turkey!

Ingredients:

8 cups fresh spinach leaves
2 avocados
3 handfuls of alfalfa sprouts
2 bell peppers

For the dressing:

1/4 cup plain nonfat Greek yogurt
1 medium lime, juiced
1/4 cup chopped chipotle peppers in Adobo sauce (about 1/3 of a medium pepper)
1 tablespoon fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
Pepper, to taste

Preparation:

Pile on the desired amount of spinach leaves in a salad bowl or plate.

Slice up the avocado and the bell pepper, and add to salad.

Sprinkle a handful of alfalfa sprouts on top.

Dressing: If you have a small food processor or blender, throw all of the ingredients in it and pulse until well-combined. If doing things by hand, chop all ingredients very finely and stir until well-combined.

Drizzle over the salad and toss to mix.

Remember, preparing for the holidays can be exciting and stressful at the same time.  Sticking to an exercise routine during this time of the year can help decrease stress and avoid unwanted weight gain. If you have the opportunity to take some time off during the holidays, try a new exercise class or attend a yoga/mind body session.

Keep an eye out for the post-Thanksgiving recovery plan workout as it will include helpful tips and specific exercises to perform post turkey, stuffing, and pumpkin pie consumption.

Did you find this pre-Thanksgiving workout plan and healthy recipe helpful? Send us a photo or email, we would love to hear from you!

Keep moving,

Cara

Cara Beltran

Cara Beltran, CPT, is a NCCPT certified trainer, GRAVITYTrainer, and tennis teaching professional. She completed her undergraduate degree from the University of California at Berkeley where she competed on the women’s tennis team throughout college. Her fitness experience has also included working as the Education and Training Coordinator for Total Gym Global Corporation. Cara currently works as a GRAVITYTrainer for the YMCA of San Diego, where she enjoys teaching classes and encouraging her students to reach their strength and fitness goals. She enjoys inspiring those around her to stay active and be the best that they can be.

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