Fuse Mini-Workout for the Busy Holiday Season

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Everyone likes a short cut, especially around the holidays. Most will do anything to make regularly scheduled tasks more efficient when times are busy. Working out is no different. Fuse Pilates founder, Mariska Breland understands this well and created some mini-maintenance workouts for busy people to follow when they can’t always make it in to a fitness class.

While there is no shortcut to total fitness, these movements can be done in minimal time and with nothing other than your own body weight for resistance at home, the office or in a hotel room when traveling, to maintain strength.

Everyone likes a short cut, especially around the holidays. Most will do anything to make regularly scheduled tasks more efficient when times are busy. Working out is no different. Between overtime at the office, a grueling activities schedule for the kids, traveling to friends and families’ houses for dinner parties, and the inevitable calorie-packed desserts, working out is not always easy to squeeze in during the holidays. Fuse Pilates founder, Mariska Breland understands this well and created some mini-maintenance workouts for her busy students to follow when they can’t always make it in to class at the Fuse Pilates DC Playground. Try these tough exercises to build strength when making it to a class is not an option.

Short Cut for Defined Arms: Shooting Star
Increase the intensity of this already-tough triceps exercise by bringing your top arm closer to your waist with each rep.

Set Up: Lie down on your side with your legs, hips and shoulders stacked. Wrap your lower arm underneath your armpit and bring your top arm to the floor in front of your shoulder.

  • Exhale to press your top arm straight. Inhale to lower. Repeat 1-3 times.
  • Walk your top arm closer to your waist and repeat. You can walk your hand as far back as to your waist. The closer you get to your waist - the tougher the exercise will be.
  • Repeat the same number of reps on the opposite side.

Short Cut for Defined Abs: Bonsai
Up the ante of a traditional Pilates move with the Fuse style rollover, keeping your knees bent through the entire motion focusing on the lower abs and back extensors. This is a fun one for kids to do, too!

Set Up: Lie down on your back and bring your legs into tabletop (knees bent, with your knees directly over your hips and your feet lifted as high as your knees). Stretch your arms long by your side.

  • Exhale to draw your abdominals inward and peel your back away from the floor from your tailbone to your shoulder blades.
  • Inhale at the top.
  • Exhale to roll back down, one vertebra at a time.
  • Repeat up to 10 times.

Short Cut for Defined Glutes: Sunrise
Concentrate on your hips and obliques to feel the work in both muscle groups during the lift.
This Fuse movement targets the outer hip muscles, obliques and shoulder stabilizers.

Set Up: Start lying on your side, propped up on your forearm with your shoulders and hips stacked. Move your legs back so that your knees are in the same plane as your shoulders and bend your knees behind you. Extend your top leg straight in direct line with your shoulders.

  • Inhale to prepare.
  • Exhale to press into the bottom leg to lift the hips and top leg.
  • Repeat 8-10 times.

Variation: Challenge yourself by holding the lift and doing tiny leg circles to the front and to the back.

While there is no shortcut to total fitness, these movements can be done in minimal time and with nothing other than your own body weight for resistance at home, the office or in a hotel room when traveling, to maintain strength. The Fuse Pilates style caters to all lifestyles to prepare and keep the body hard core in every situation, even through the holidays.

For more information on Fuse Pilates classes, workshops and private training sessions offered at the Fuse Pilates DC Playground location, visit: http://www.fusepilates.com.

About Fuse Pilates
Fuse Pilates, developed in 2005 by fitness expert Mariska Breland, builds on traditional Pilates exercises and teaching styles with an original, fun, and highly effective twist on Pilates mat and apparatus classes. Prompted by the growing popularity of the Fuse Pilates method, Breland partnered with Roxanna Hakimi and Sormeh Youssefieh to open the Fuse Pilates Playground in Washington DC’s trendy Dupont Circle neighborhood in June 2011. Each Fuse class is different, uniquely customized to student requests and choreographed to upbeat music. Classes offer an intense yet approachable method of mat, tower, reformer and chair instruction, along with private coaching and wellness counseling for beginner to expert levels. Fuse Pilates' highly trained and experienced instructors concentrate on 360 degrees of the body to shape and create beautifully-toned physiques while promoting overall health and wellness. To learn more about Fuse Pilates visit http://www.fusepilates.com/.

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Holly DeCarlo

Nancy Vaughn