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A one-month resistance band workout you can do anywhere

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This total-body workout utilizes exercise bands to tone every muscle group — and you only have to do it three days a week.

Choosing a resistance band

To start, we recommend the lowest strength band, and in our band pack, this was the color green. But if you have been incorporating strength training into your routine regularly, you may be able to use a heavier resistance. To determine what that will be, perform a few of the exercises with different bands to find the one that you can stretch completely to the end of a movie. For example: when performing a bicep curl, you are able to completely contract your arm and hold for a moment before lowering back to the starting position. (If the resistance of the band is too much for you to control and your arm is pulled back down in the other direction, the band is too heavy.)

The lightest band in the pack is approximately the equivalent of a 5-pound dumbbell when stretched fully. However, what makes bands different than dumbbells is that the tension remains on the muscles during the entire exercise, whereas with dumbbells there is a part of the exercise where the muscle is not working. (For example, a bicep curl with a band uses the bicep on the way up and way down; a bicep curl with dumbbell uses the bicep on the curl up and barely on the way down.)

Once you’re able to do 10 repetitions with your starting band, you can increase to 15 repetitions. Once that becomes too easy for your body, you can increase to the next band at an increased resistance level (from light to medium, or medium to heavy). Keep in mind that your lower body may progress to the next band before your upper body because the leg and glute muscles are larger and stronger than the upper body by design. (You may even start with a “light” band for upper body and “medium” for lower.) The resistance band workout structure

We’re breaking down the exercises into four categories:

  • Lower body
  • Upper body
  • Abs
  • Advanced plank circuit

For the next month, you’ll commit to working your lower body, upper body and abs three days a week. How you choose to get it done is up to you: You can do all three circuits on the same day, or do lower body one day and upper body and abs the next. Split up your exercises however you’d like! In addition, three days a week we’ll be aiming for 20 minutes of interval cardio. You can jump on any cardio machine (or march, walk, or run in place in your living room!) for 1 minute slowly, and then 1 minute quickly for 20 minutes total.

This workout plan is meant to work with your schedule. Remember that you only need to get in three workouts a week. However, if you want to work out six days a week for a shorter amount of time, you can do that too. This plan also leaves wiggle room for unexpected changes in your schedule. If last-minute plans creep into your workout time, you can cut it short and nix abs, for example, and carry it over to the next day. Make this plan work for you and your schedule!

A sample one-month resistance band workout

Hang the calendar on your fridge, or keep it in your purse or car, for easy reference. Remember, this is just a sample of how you can structure your workouts! The only requirement is that you complete three workouts (3 sets of each with 12-15 reps) from each category every week.

February 1: Lower Body & Abs & Cardio

February 2: Upper Body

February 3: Abs & Cardio

February 4: Lower Body & Upper Body

February 5: REST DAY

February 6: Lower Body & Upper Body & Abs & Cardio

February 7: REST DAY

February 8: Upper Body & Abs & Cardio

February 9: Lower Body & Cardio

February 10: REST DAY

February 11: Lower Body & Upper Body

February 12: Abs & Cardio

February 13: Upper Body & Lower Body

February 14: REST DAY

February 15: Lower Body & Abs & Cardio & Try Advanced Sequence

February 16: REST DAY

February 17: Lower Body & Upper Body

February 18: Abs & Cardio

February 19: Lower Body & Cardio & Try Advanced Sequence

February 20: Upper Body & Abs

February 21: REST DAY

February 22: Lower Body & Upper Body & Abs

February 23: Cardio

February 24: REST DAY

February 25: Lower Body & Upper Body & Advanced Sequence

February 26: Abs & Cardio

February 27: Lower Body & Upper Body & Abs

February 28: Abs & Advanced Sequence & Cardio

 resistance band butt exercises during their warm-ups for this reason.)

Not to mention, resistance bands are small and lightweight, making them easy to travel with and to stash in a small space. Whether you’re just starting your fitness routine and are looking for ways to progress your exercises before adding weights, or are just on the hunt for a great exercise tool that’s versatile and instantly adds resistance on the go, it’s worth investing in some bands. You can find packs of looped bands, as well as sets of longer non-looped bands (with and without handles) On Fitness Vasa for a pretty decent price.

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