Mountain Climbers – Three Variations
Most people engage in workouts they like and feel comfortable with. For example, if you enjoy working out on the elliptical machine, chances are you allocate a disproportionate amount of your weekly fitness time to the elliptical workout. This is the case for the treadmill and the stationary bicycle machine as well. However, generally you have to step out of your comfort zone in order to see additional results. This means you need to frequently challenge yourself with exercise routines that target different parts of your body. Upper body is one such area often neglected during your workout (especially by women). A weak upper body can be a recipe for physical complications down the road.
Bottom line, your exercise regime needs to have a component of upper body routines, in addition to your lower body exercises. If you are looking to strengthen your upper body, you should consider mixing up your routines with mountain climbers. Doing mountain climbers on a regular basis, will help develop your shoulders, chest, and tricep muscles, as well as your back, lats, and abdominals among others.
Three Variations of Mountain Climbers
Lie down on the floor and lift your body using the strength of your arms. Lock your hips in place (and avoid slouching). Your arms should be fully extended in this position. Then gently bring your left leg forward and touch your left arm with your left knee. Bring the leg back to its starting position and do the same with your right leg. Keep alternating this movement for 60 seconds. Use a Gymboss interval timer to properly time yourself. Take a 10-second break and repeat again 9 more times for a total of 10 times.
Position yourself the same way as described above. The only difference is that in this routine, you will pick up speed with your leg movements. Drive your knees up as far as you can, while keeping your torso parallel to the floor. Your knees do not have to touch your arms as in the prior example. Instead, you may tuck them inside of your opened arms. As one foot touches the ground, the other one is pushed up forward, such that at no given time should you have both feet on the ground simultaneously. Do this exercise for 50 seconds, then rest for 10 seconds and repeat 14 more times for a total count of 15.
If you would like to challenge yourself even further with the mountain climber’s routine, add a slight variation to the intermediate level. Rather than lifting one leg at a time, your feet will be touching the ground simultaneously. To help you find your rhythm, begin the workout with one leg in front of you and the other one behind you (as demonstrated in the video). Then raise both legs at the same time, in the opposite direction, and let both feet hit the floor in unison. Keep alternating with this movement for 30 seconds. Once you complete the set, rest for 10 seconds, and repeat again 19 additional times for a total count of 20.
Mountain climbers are not only excellent for your upper body; they also help you tone your quad, glute and hamstring muscles. In addition, they increase your metabolism significantly, as they represent a form of cardio as well. This makes the mountain climbers routine, an efficient full body exercise, especially when you are short on time.
Remember to always consult a licensed healthcare practitioner before embarking on any treatment, it’s your health and it’s IMPORTANT. Disclaimer
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