Get into summer shape with fitness tips from Yorktown trainer

Jonathan Black
Contact Reporterjoblack@dailypress.com

Fitness doesn't stop the moment Spring Teller leaves the gym.

The Yorktown trainer has developed a three-tier approach to tackling fitness. While getting fit for the summer is a perfect excuse to start training, Teller believes there's no better time to start than immediately.

"Just start. It's a lifestyle," she said. "If you just want to be a healthier person, you have to make your health a priority. That doesn't necessarily mean losing or gaining weight."

Teller's triptych approach is broken into nutrition, fitness and wellness. She began this holistic approach after noticing gaps in traditional training methods.

Nutrition, of course, centers around what's being eaten. Teller recommends taking a daily multivitamin, drinking a gallon of water and eating four servings of vegetables and two servings of fruits as a first step.

Something else to do is treat lunches like dinner by bringing a meal with protein and veggies rather than a sandwich and chips.

"If you're eating six servings of fruits and veggies a day, it's hard to eat anything else." she said. "I like to focus on what people can do rather than what they can't do to start."

Over at Riverside Wellness and Fitness center, dietician Holly Hicks works with patients on developing a meal plan. Depending on what the patient needs, she'll track calorie intake and what types of food people consume over a 24-hour period and their medical history.

"What I do when I work with an individual is look at the whole picture," she said. "Individuals can determine how many calories they need per day depending on what their health goals are. For some people, it may mean gaining more muscle. Some of them may be improving their cardiorespiratory level. Others may want to lose body fat."

If people start to struggle, that's when Teller transitions to wellness.

For her, wellness is overcoming obstacles and staying positive. Think of it as the internal sense of health and motivation. There's a few tactics to make sure motivation stays up, like keeping a journal and having a strong support system.

"If you're not strong internally, it's very hard to be strong externally," she said. "It's very hard to be consistent."

Emotional health is one of the main reasons Bethany Welstead of Newport News attends classes at the YMCA. The former college athlete also is an avid runner, having done the One City Marathon relay and the Shamrock half-marathon in Virginia Beach.

"I'll run by myself, but classes give me a routine. It breaks it up," she said. "My mood is so much better when I work out."

Physical fitness

The Daily Press tasked Teller with coming up with two workouts. The "Outdoor Lovers" workout can be done just about anywhere, while the "Super Circuit" is for when gym equipment is more readily accessible.

One exercise Teller highlighted in "Super Circuit" is the bent-over rows, which helps people who work in front of computers.

"Our lifestyles are hunching forward," Teller said. "You need to open up your back."

That exercise also features a task that can be done at work to get people away from their desks. The bicep curls can be done by standing on one leg to help improve balance, and they require minimal room — maybe just a few stares from colleagues.

The "Outdoor Lovers" workout could even be done on a lunch break. It involves pushups, bench dips, planks and burpees or squat thrusts. Teller pointed out a few common problems she often sees in squats and pushups.

In squats, the weight should be on the heels, not toes. Knees should also be aligned with the ankles as the body rises and falls. For pushups, the spine should be aligned so the body forms a straight line.

To make pushups easier, increase the incline by placing hands on a wall or elevated surface, such as a a bench or couch.

One of Teller's biggest pieces of advice rings across the board, no matter the exercise or the experience level: "People don't have enough confidence in themselves," she said. "Don't be afraid to lift heavy."

Black can be reached by phone at 757-247-4607.

Spring Teller contact

Contact Spring by visiting springtellerfitness.com or facebook.com/springtellerfitness. You can also reach her at springteller@springtellerfitness.com.

Outdoor Lovers workout

*Be sure to wear sunscreen and a hat when you work out outside.

 

10-minute warmup:

•Walk 10 minutes

•10 forward arm circles

•10 rear arm circles

20-minute workout (do the circuit four times)

•Walk 2 minutes

•Jog 1 minute

•Sprint 30 seconds

•20 alternating walking lunges: Place hands on hips, step forward and lunge down. While lunging: Keep weight on front heel, maintain 90-degree angle with front heel and try to lower back knee as low as possible. Keep chest up and head held high. As you walk forward, you can tap your foot to the ground between each lunge (beginner) or step through directly into the next lunge (advanced).

•10 pushups: Place hands slightly wider than shoulder width either on the ground (advanced), on an elevated bench (intermediate) or on a wall (beginner). Lower your body down keeping your neck in line with your spine. As you lower, be sure to bring elbows back closer to the body instead of straight out to the sides. Elbows and body should make the shape of an arrow vs. the shape of a "T." Return to starting plank position and repeat.

•10 bench dips: As you sit on a bench, place both hands on the edge of the bench in line with your shoulders. Walk your feet forward so as to let your hips hang off the edge of the bench. Slowly lower your body down to create a 90-degree angle with your elbows. Keep your hips as close to the bench as possible. Return to starting position and repeat.

•10 burpees: To start, stand with feet hip-width apart. Move to crouching position and place hands on floor. Pop both legs out into a plank position. Perform one pushup. Return to crouching position then jump up as high as possible. Repeat.

•30-second plank: Place hands on floor shoulder-width apart in a "pushup" position. Keep hips low, in line with spine. Rock your weight onto your toes and hold.

Super Circuit workout

10-minute warmup:

•Walk 5 minutes, then jog 5 minutes

•10 forward arm circles

•10 rear arm circles

Workout (do the circuit 3-5 times)

•10 dumbbell (DB) sumo squats: Hold a single DB in front of your body. Squat down while keeping your weight on your heels, your chest up, and your knees in line with your toes. Pause for one count at the bottom, then stand, returning to original position.

•10 box jumps: Use a plyo box, an exercise step or a flat bench. Jump with both feet on top of the box. Land softly on the box, taking care to land toes to heels and not flat-footed. Keep your knees in line with your toes when you jump and land on the box. Step backward off the bench to your original position. Repeat.

•10 pushups: Place hands slightly wider than shoulder-width either on the ground (advanced), on an elevated bench (intermediate) or on a wall (beginner). Lower your body down keeping your neck in line with your spine. As you lower, be sure to bring elbows back closer to the body instead of straight out to the sides. Elbows and body should make the shape of an arrow vs. the shape of a "T." Return to starting plank position and repeat.

•10 DB bent-over rows: Hold a DB in each hand. Hinge forward at the hip while keeping your back and neck straight. Hold dumbbells down in front of your body at a slight diagonal. Pull DBs up to your hip and pinch shoulder blades together. Repeat rowing motion while keeping your back straight.

•10 DB stiff-leg deadlifts: Hold a dumbbell in each hand. Hinge forward at the hip, taking care to keep your back straight. As you hinge forward, also be sure to keep your weight on your heels, press your hips backward, and do not lock your knee joints. Pause for one count at the bottom and squeeze your glutes together. Return to standing position. Repeat.

•10 bench jumps: Stand to one side of a vertically oriented bench. Place both hands on bench. While keeping your hands on the bench, jump over the bench. Do not lock elbow joint. Repeat.

•10 DB shoulder presses: Stand with feet hip-width apart. Hold a dumbbell in each hand. Hold DBs laterally at shoulder level. Press DB overhead. Straighten arms, but do not touch dumbbells together or lock your elbows. Return to the lateral position. Repeat.

•10 DB bicep curls: Stand with feet hip-width apart. Hold a dumbbell in each hand. Bend elbows, bringing DB up to shoulder level. Pause at the top for one count. Slowly lower DBs to starting position.

•10 bench dips: As you sit on a bench, place both hands on the edge of the bench in line with your shoulders. Walk your feet forward so as to let your hips hang off the edge of the bench. Slowly lower your body down to create a 90-degree angle with your elbows. Keep your hips as close to the bench as possible. Return to starting position and repeat.

•10 bench tucks: Sit on edge of bench. Raise both heels off ground. Tuck knees into chest. Straighten legs to starting position. Repeat.

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