July 27 and let’s get the momentum of the week going by doing a quick combo tabata of the cross crawl march and jumping jacks. A tabata is a 4 minute workout with 8 rounds of 20 seconds of exercise and 10 seconds rest. For this tabata you will do 4 rounds of the cross crawl and 4 rounds of the jumping jacks. If you love using kettlebells, you can substitute a combo tabata of russian swings and deadlifts, 4 rounds each. The tabata is over quickly but to get the most out of it you want to go intensely for the 20 seconds, then rest fully for the ten seconds. I say push yourself as hard and fast as you can go and keep proper form. It is the form that keeps our body safe from injury. The cross crawl is like marching in place, lift your right arm and left leg simultaneously,then as you let them down raise up your left arm and right leg and keep repeating. Exaggerate the lift of your leg and swing of your arm to swing it across the midline of your body; breathing deeply, in through your nose and out through your mouth. For the jumping jacks, start with standing with a neutral spine with feet together and arms at your side. Slightly bend your knees, and propel yourself a few inches into the air( if for any reason it is hard for you to jump just step out to the side). While in air, bring your legs out to the side about shoulder width or slightly wider. As you are moving your legs outward, you should raise your arms up over your head; arms should be slightly bent throughout the entire in-air movement. Your feet should land shoulder width or wider as your hands meet above your head with arms slightly bent. Quickly jump back to the starting position and repeat. To keep our spine neutral throughout these moves we need to tighten and engage our gluteus muscles on our bottoms and keep our shoulders pinched back. We will also brace our whole abdominal area by imagining we are wearing a girdle that is pulling our belly button towards our spine. If you are doing the kettlebell tabata of the Russian swings and deadlifts, remember to let the power of movement come from your hip snap; and again focus on keeping the back straight, neutral, and braced. Either tabata should get your blood pumping! Self care tip of the day, is to take 10 fully conscious breaths; in other words, breaths in which you are very aware that you are breathing. Instead of breathing and doing a hundred other things, just take ten breaths where that is the complete focus. Often just by bringing our attention and awareness to our breath, we can vastly improve our breath. Breathing well is a simple and free tool for optimal health that is always available to you. The better we breathe, the better our bodies function.