Off-Day Workout And “Old Man” Warm Up

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By Craig Ballantyne, CSCS, MS, CTT
101 Bodyweight Exercises

This article is long overdue.

Today I want to talk about the best off-day workouts you can
do between hard sessions of Training.

In most cases, simply walking, biking, hiking, stretching/easy yoga,
and easy bodyweight exercises are all good enough off-day activities.

Doing 500 kettlebell swings and 200 pushups on an off-day might be
fine once in a while for an advanced person, but in reality, that
is not an off-day. That’s a workout.

The 5 true purposes of off-day activity are:

1) For health (if your life is sedentary, i.e. desk job + commute +
sitting down leisure time), then you simply need to get up and get
moving for 30 minutes each day at a minimum.

If you are a manual laborer who walks 3+ miles per day or does 1+
hour of moderate activity (lifting boxes, etc), then you really
don’t need to obsess about off-day activity – stretching, foam
rolling and massage, and meditation are probably best for your health.

We’re not trying workout on our off-days. We’re just trying to
improve our general health and well-being.

2) Mobility (aka Yoga) – In many cases, we can do low-intensity
bodyweight exercises and mobility drills to fix our bodies.

This includes foam rolling, simple torso (ab endurance exercises),
shoulder mobility drills, hip mobility drills, moderate bodyweight
exercises, and stretching. This will not qualify as a workout, but
will get you a bit of a sweat going.

And there are some cool new bodyweight exercises in this program:

=> 101 Bodyweight Exercises

Combined with walking, mobility exercises – such as those found
in my “Old Man Warm-Up” would be an excellent way to spend 45
minutes each day.

3) Enhanced recovery from past workouts and preparation for future
workouts – same movements as above but this is a different benefit.

By doing light activity, we get blood flow to the sore areas and
this might help recovery, decreasing soreness and getting us ready
for our next training session.

4) Social time with family and friends and errands – Incorporate
light activity into your daily life. Take the dog for a longer
walk, meet your friends for a walk, play extra long with the kids
outside, or do your errands by foot rather than by car. Heck, walk
around a shopping mall and people watch.

5) Relaxation – Unplug. Go for a walk without a phone, ipod, or in
my case, a portable CD player. (Yes, I have one and I use it
regularly.) Let your mind wander as your body wanders.

That said, what I do on my off-days is something that I call my
“Old Man Warm-up”, that I also do before all of my hard workouts.

It lasts about 25 minutes, and in the list below I’ve added a few
other exercises to give you a little extra sweat without stealing
from your recovery.

The Old-Man Warm-Up/Off-Day Activity Session

1) Foam rolling: Upper back, lats, upper back/posterior deltoid,
TFL, vastus lateralis, vastus medialis, adductors, hamstrings, glutes.

2) Acuball rolling: calves, glute, biceps (I have a sore left biceps).

This takes about 5-10 minutes.

Then I move into a bodyweight circuit.

3) Cross-body arms (also called X’s in some manuals)
4) Bodyweight squat
5) Bird Dog or Bird Dog with Leg Abduction
6) Glute squeeze
7) Plank or side plank or ball plank or bird-dog plank
8] Band pull (done 4 times at various points in circuit)
9) Overhead lunge (using broomstick)
10) 1-Leg RDL
11) Stick-up
12) Chest stretch, shoulder stretch
13) Psoas/hip flexor stretch
14) Downward dog stretch (hips up position)
15) Cossack lunge
16) Yoga Pigeon stretch
*17) Stability Ball Leg Curl – 10 reps
*18) Pushup – 25% of max reps
*19) 1-leg lying hip extension
*20) Chin-up – 25% of max reps
21) Spiderman Climb with 3-second hold at top
22) Forearm stretches
23) Neck/trap stretches
24) Leg swings
*25) Total Body Extension – 10 reps

I hope this off-day activity guide clarifies the purpose and
recommendations for these days.

Add a little gratitude and meditation for bonus karmic points and
you’ll feel like you’ve done something without doing too much.

Keep rocking,

Craig Ballantyne, CSCS, MS, CTT
101 Bodyweight Exercises

One Response to “Off-Day Workout And “Old Man” Warm Up”

  1. Wold Fitness Notebook » Blog Archive » Get A Great Workout Without Going To A Carson City Gym Says:

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