If you're flying somewhere for the holidays, chances are you're going to spend a little extra time than you thought on the plane with weather delays and de-icing procedures. What better way to while away the hours than doing a little armchair workout?
Yes, it is indeed possible to do some toning moves in those tight economy seats, says Kristy DiScipio, a fitness manager for several Equinox gyms based in Boston. If you're taking a long trip overseas, you still need to get up and walk around every few hours to lower your risk of blood clots, she says, but here are some workout moves if you're simply stuck in your seat for an hour or two.
(And check out these tips for holiday workouts at grandma's house.)
Core strengtheners. Sit up as tall as you can, and lift one foot three to six inches off the floor. Hold for 5 to 10 seconds or up to 30 seconds if possible. Repeat on the other foot for a total of 15 repetitions. "If you have room, extend your leg," says DiScipio. That's hard, though, if you're not sitting in business class or an exit row seat.
Tricep builders. Grab both armrests and push up so you're lifting your rear-end off the seat. Hover over your seat for up to 20 seconds before coming back down. Breathe normally but hold your abdominal muscles in to work your core. Repeat 10 times.
Improve circulation. Do wrist and ankle circles by rotating each wrist and then each ankle in a circular motion. Do 8 to 12 circles for each wrist and each ankle and then reverse the direction of the circles for another set of reps.
Spine stretchers. Take your left arm and cross it under your right; Stretch your right arm out in front of you and cross your left arm under your right twisting both arms until your hands are touching at the palms. Slide both arms up towards the ceiling.
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