Happy Summer everyone!! Can you believe it’s the middle of July already?!? I seriously can’t… I always thought time flew by, but now that I have a kiddo, I can’t seem to catch up! Anyone else feel that way? Anyways, I looked at the calendar and realized it’s time for the July workout of the month!!!
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July Workout of the Month
Now that I’ve been blogging for about 4 months (woohoo!), I feel like I’ve learned a TON but I’m still trying to figure out where I want to go from here. I love the idea of doing a Workout Of the Month (WOM), but I’m going to “try” to structure them better.
Before, the posts are all over the place, and while the workouts were great, there’s no focus. A lot of that is because I LOVE total body workouts (maybe I love them a little too much)! But I know that in order to see progress, you’ve got to let your muscles restore and replenish. AKA I can’t always do full body…insert crying face here… So I’m planning on creating more focused workouts in order to implement a program that can be followed from combining them! We’ll have an entire set of workouts at the end of the year that we can schedule accordingly and make significant gains (Don’t worry, I’ll put it in a printer friendly version!)
I also want to include more information and more facts, so you can be educated on what you’re doing. It could be related to what specific muscle groups we’re working on or tips on keeping great form. I don’t want you to just follow along to the workout, I want you to learn something in the process as well!! Thoughts on all of this?!?!
No Time to Waste
Now that we’ve covered that, I’ve got 6 months left in this year to create some AWESOME WOM’s, starting with this one!! I’ll make sure to include a lower body, upper body, cardio focused, and total body WOM in the coming months. But for now, the July workout of the month will be working on the CORE!
I have to admit, I don’t typically do a ton of core exercises. I’m a firm believer in using your core and focusing on it during every movement – pushups, squats, deadlifts, etc. You should always engage your core and in turn be strengthening it, even if the workout you’re doing is not your “typical” core workout (think crunches). The reason I decided to make this a core workout is because while the main movement targets your abs, it’s not just for your core (sneaky, I know!). But who wants to sit on your butt and do a bazillion crunches?? Not me! So PLANKING it is!!!!
Don’t roll your eyes at me, planks are a GREAT work out! And this July workout of the month incorporates several different variations to target your rectus abdominis (those 6 pack abs everyone is looking for), your oblique’s (that’s your side abs), and your transverse abdominis (the deep abs that suck in your stomach, think of a corset!)
What many people don’t realize is that your transverse abdominis (TVA) are SUPER important! Even more important than the rectus abdominis, which are the ones most people focus on (hello, 6 pack?!) But you use your TVA all – the – time. Simply targeting your rectus abdominis is not going to get you very far because in order to even see your 6 pack, your TVA need to be strong! The TVA pulls your muscles in (like I said, a corset!) and helps get rid of that pooch. They are especially key for you pregnant momma’s as they’ll help you in labor!
If you’re a momma reading this, going “hey, I’ve got a pooch!” you may want to first check if you have diastasis recti (I’ll go into this in another post). If you do, I DON’T RECOMMEND this workout! Planks could make it worse! They are plenty of other exercises that focus on closing the gap from your rectus abdominis, but your normal crunches and abs are NOT those exercises!!
Alright, I’ve talked enough, let’s get to the workout already!
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July Workout of the Month
Outfit: Champion leggings (affiliate link) and Run Fast tank top from Kohl’s!
Plank – This is your normal plank, keep your core, arms and legs tight!
Plank w/ Leg Raise – Normal plank but raise each leg up into the air. Try not to shift your body as your leg raises.
Plank Knee to Opposite Arm – Normal plank but pull your knee in to your opposite elbow. Again, try not to shift your body.
Plank Up/Downs – Start in normal plank position. Lower one hand down onto your elbow. Repeat with your other hand and hold in elbow plank position for a second. Then raise back up onto one hand. Repeat with you other hand until you’re back in a normal plank. Repeat this starting with the same hand 10 times, then switch to start with the other hand.
Plank Knee to Same Arm – Normal plank but pull your knee to the outside of your same side elbow. Your body should shift to crunch your side abs.
Plank Rock – Start in elbow plank position and rock forward onto your toes. Hold for a second and then rock back into the starting position.
Side Plank Reach Through – Start in high side plank with your arm straight into the air. While keeping your balance, bring your arm down and through to your other side. Return your arm back into the air to the starting position, then complete all reps. Repeat on your other side.
Side Plank Leg Raise – Start in elbow side plank. Raise your top foot straight up into the air keeping it stacked over top of the bottom leg. Return your leg to the starting position and complete all reps. Repeat on your other side.
Try some other WOM’s while you’re at it!
What’s your favorite plank variation? Do you have one that I’ve missed in this workout? Let me know, I’d love to add it in!