Basics of Training
Your most common exercise questions answered, plus a great prenatal workout
2. TRICEPS OVERHEAD EXTENSION
Lie face-up on the floor with head propped higher than your belly, knees bent and feet on the floor. Hold a dumbbell in each hand, palms facing in with arms straight and in line with your shoulders [A]. Keeping back against support, bend both elbows, lowering dumbbells on both sides of your head [B]. Slowly straighten arms to starting position and repeat. Strengthens triceps.
3. BICEPS CURLS
Stand with feet hip-width apart, legs straight but not locked. Hold a dumbbell in each hand, arms hanging at your sides, palms facing forward. Bend both elbows, keeping them in line with your shoulders, bringing dumbbells up to shoulders [A]. Lower dumbbells until elbows are bent to a 90-degree angle [B]. Complete reps without stopping. Note: As pregnancy progresses, sit on the edge of a chair. Strengthens biceps.
4. LEG-LIFT COMBO
Attach an ankle weight to your right ankle; then stand with your left side to the back of a chair, holding the top for support. Place right hand on right hip and slightly bend left knee. Contract your abs to drop your tailbone down; then lift your right leg up and out as high as you can, keeping your balance and hips square [A]. Lower right leg; then lift it up and behind you, pointing your toes, hips square [B]. Lower leg and repeat. Switch legs and ankle weights; repeat. Strengthens upper hip, buttocks and hamstrings.
Standing in the same position as in Exercise #4, bend your right knee to a 90-degree angle so your knee and tailbone point down toward the floor [A]. Maintain this position without arching your back and press your right foot straight backward, contracting your buttocks [B]. Return to starting position and repeat. Then switch legs and ankle weights and do the same exercise with your left leg. Strengthens buttocks and hamstrings.
6. SPLIT LUNGE
Stand with your right foot in front of your left in a lunge position, left heel lifted. Hold a dumbbell in each hand, arms hanging straight by your sides. Keep your torso straight and balanced between both legs, chest lifted and shoulders relaxed [A]. (If you have trouble balancing, hold onto a chair for support and place your other hand on your hip.) Bend both knees, keeping your right knee aligned with your right ankle as your back knee approaches the floor [B]. Straighten both legs to starting position, repeat for reps; then switch legs. Strengthens buttocks, quadriceps, hamstrings and calves.