Love to dress up and enjoy the revelry? Halloween is the time to get involved – the unofficial kick-off to the holiday season. From Halloween tricks ‘n’ treats to Thanksgiving pies to New Year’s drinks, the ongoing cascade of empty calories over the final months of the year can easily ruin all your hard work.
Looking to stay committed to your health and fitness goals but still intend to enjoy the holiday spirit? Take part in this full-body Halloween-themed workout and fight off the weight gain that tends to haunt most Americans this time of year.
Like any exercise, completing a warm-up is key – although you may want to look like a zombie on Halloween, walking like one isn’t going to help your fitness goals.
Although this exercise may sound stationary, it’s going to work those all-important deep core muscles. Firstly, lie on your back and hold both arms and legs straight above your body while bracing (contracting) your abs – you do have them, don’t try that excuse! Hold for 45 seconds (yes, 45!) and rest for 30 seconds. Repeat this exercises 5 times, oh and return your Batman costume – you won’t need that anymore.
Okay, so we’re going to work the upper-body now – our aim is to scare away the extra pounds. Grab yourself a stability ball and start in a push-up position (feet on the ball & hands on the floor). For extra stability squeeze your glutes and thighs. Bend your elbows and do a push-up – or at least try! When you push to the top, lift your hips and keep your legs straight to perform a jackknife position as you draw the ball closer to your hands. Slowly lower your hips and return to your starting position – keep your feet on the ball at all times. Keep going until you can’t take anymore and rest 60 seconds before taking on the next gruesome get-up.
You know the drill – that old staple of high school sports is coming back to haunt you – the suicide run. A traditional suicide run in basketball involves starting on the baseline, running to the half-way point and back, running to the opposite foul line and back and eventually running to the other side of the court and back. Repeat this 3-5 times, resting 60 seconds between each set. Don’t have access? Jump on the treadmill and intermittently run hard for 60 seconds, rest 60 and so on. Ensure you stay hydrated – we don’t want you looking like a ghost.
Those eight-legged friends of ours are actually extremely athletic – and you will be too after this workout! Be inspired by the way they move and break out a sweat – that’s key for fat loss. You will need approximately 15 metres of space and a sense of humour. Begin in a high-plank position and bring your right knee up to the outside of your right elbow – reach forward with your left hand as you creepily crawl the floor. As you push your right foot into the floor to extend the leg and move forward, bring your left knee forward on the outside of your left elbow. If all else fails – crawl across the ground acting like a spider and if you’re looking for bonus points – crawl back to your starting position. Repeat this 10 times, yes 10!
Okay, so it’s not your usual deadlift. The dead in deadlift refers to the fact that the weight is stationary when you begin this lift. As always, stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and rest a dumbbell length way between your feet. Hinge your hips back and reach for the dumbbell with your right hand (or left if that’s how you want to start). Press your feet into the ground as you push your hips forward to return to standing. Once standing, complete a biceps curl to overhead press with the dumbbell. As the dumbbell lowers, push your hips back to lower yourself back down to the ground. Complete this exercise 5 times before switching arms. You can rest upto 60 seconds.
This could totally be more seasonally realistic if you wore a hockey mask and worked out at a closed summer camp. To start, hold a dumbbell in a vertical position (like an axe handle). As always, keep your feet shoulder-width apart so that your right foot is slightly shifted forward. Position both hands over your shoulder. Then, shift your body weight to your left leg and slightly rotate your right foot so it is now pointing towards the inside of your body. Bring the dumbbell down across your body and over the outside of the right thigh, then rotate both feet to the right. As the weight comes down, sink into your hips and finish with your left foot rotated toward your right. To finish the movement, push your right foot into the ground and swing your hands back over your left shoulder – returning to the starting position. Complete this 8-10 times and ensure you have plenty of room – we don’t want any trips to the emergency room.
Again, you will need a dumbbell – just think, you’re totally getting your money’s worth here. Our aim here is not in the title, it’s to strengthen your upper arms. This killer move starts with you lay on your back, knees bent and your feet resting on the floor. Extend both arms (together) straight up whilst holding a weight in each hand (not too heavy – or the title will be more realistic). Slowly bend both elbows so that the weight SLOWLY comes down on either side of your forehead – please keep your eyes open! Extend both arms back to the top and repeat 10-12 reps, rest for 1-minute and complete 5 sets.
There you have it – seven super-scary tricks or treats to keep those Halloween goodies under control.