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5 Minutes to Bliss
Warm up ideas to get you through the first phase of a workout when the goddess of motivation has yet to shower you with her blessings.
Nobody wants to do dishes. But they have to get done. Unless you are ok living in squalor, which I am not. On your typical Wednesday evening, tired from the first three days of the week and feeling the weight of the next two days, it’s difficult to muster the strength to load the dishwasher.
Bare with me, this ties to warm ups.
To bolster our resolve during these challenging moments, I developed a call to arms: 5 Minutes to Bliss*. Once uttered, my husband and I get to work doing whatever we can to clean the kitchen for no more than 5 minutes.
The end result is that the dishwasher gets loaded, the counters are wiped down, stuff is put away, and we have a fighting chance of keeping the kitchen clean for one more day.
Getting started on anything is tough. There is something about the transition from one task to the next that seems so monumental it holds some people back from becoming the person they want to be.
Dramatic I know. But I believe that if we can master the transitions between one state and another, we’d all accomplish a lot more with less angst.
From scrolling social media to writing an article
From responding to emails to articulating a strategy
From sitting on the couch to going to the gym
From doing something easy / comfortable / mindless to doing something hard / uncomfortable / meaningful.
All too often the divide seems MASSIVE, when it’s really just a quick transition.
You’re usually only 5 minutes away from the bliss of doing what really matters to you.
With that in mind, I want to share a few warmups that I rely on to transition from feeling unmotivated to energized. Because even though I absolutely love working out, it still requires making a choice to show up everyday. And some days my motivation doesn’t appear until 5 minutes into a workout.
Lower Body Warm Up 1
Kang Squats with Pause: 5 reps
Surrenders: 10 reps
Glute Bridges: 15 reps
Cossack Squats: 20 reps (10 per side)
You could do round 1 with no weight, round 2+ with light dumbbells in your hands. No weight needed for the glute bridges.
Lower Body Warm Up 2
Spiderman Stretch with Twist: 10 reps (5 per side)
Single Leg Box Squats: 10 reps (5 per side)
Steps Ups: 10 reps (5 per side)
Romanian Deadlifts: 10 reps
Hip Thrusts: 10 reps
Full Body Warmup 1
Use a light plate or dumbbells.
Squats: 10 reps
Good Mornings: 10 reps
Ground to Overhead: 10 reps
Bent Over Rows: 10 reps
Full Body Warm Up 2
Kettlebell Deadlifts: 10 reps
Kettlebell Swings: 10 reps
Kettlebell Goblet Squats: 10 reps
Kettlebell Gorilla Rows: 10 reps
Kettlebell Floor Press: 10 reps
Upper Body Warm Up 1
Banded Pull Aparts: 10 reps
Push-ups: 10 reps
Scapular Pull-ups: 10 reps
Shoulder Press: 10 reps
Face Pulls: 10 reps
Up Downs: 10 reps
If full push-ups are difficult, you can do one round with your knees on the ground, then another round where you do the lowering (eccentric) portion in the full push-up position, then use your knees to help you back up, or you can do these with your hands on a bench.
Upper Body Warm Up 2
Banded Rows: 10 reps
Banded Press: 10 reps
Kick Sits: 10 reps
Dead Hang: 10 to 60 seconds
Each of these warmups combines pushing and pulling movements, with at least one movement that will get your heart rate up.
For leg day warm ups, I include a squat, hinge, and thrust movement which typically mimics my major leg day exercises.
For upper body days, I endeavor to push and pull in at least two planes (vertical and horizontal).
In all cases, I keep the equipment required to a minimum so I can stay in one place and get it done.
95% of the time this is all I need to feel motivated to tackle the workout. Occasionally the slump lasts a bit longer, so I don’t want to over promise here, but generally speaking, I find I am never more than 5 minutes away from bliss.
*When we are cleaning, we refer to ourselves as Clean Team Six. As such, my husband has petitioned to rebrand 5 Minutes to Bliss to 5 Minutes of Hell which I personally find a touch dramatic…