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Core workout with hip mobility work

Updated: May 24, 2023

This core workout is 25 minutes and is good for all levels. In this core workout, we focus on overall core strength as well as hip flexibility and hip mobility. The transverse abdominis is a complex group of muscles that make up the core.

When we talk about core strength, it encompasses more than just the traditional six-pack. One of the happy side effects of having a strong core is a six-pack, but more important than looking good is to live a life without back pain. Since there is a gang load of muscles that connect down around your lower back, hips, and pelvis (also known as the lumbo pelvic hip complex) it's important to make sure to spend some time down there.


I would like to share the motivation behind this workout since I feel that there are others out there who like me, would benefit from this core workout the most. I am the lucky dad of two boys who are full of energy, and creativity and like to rough house. At 4 and 6 years of age, they are getting big enough that when we play, we play hard. Initially, I would get back pain after a rough play session and that made me scared to be active on their level the next time we would get after it.

Instead of saying "No, daddy can't play because last time you jumped on my neck and I threw my back out. But I'll watch from over here." I would rather like to be the dad who says "Let's do this!" (and mean it!).

As a personal trainer and yoga teacher, I spend most of my days moving, picking heavy things up, and stretching a fair amount. But when covid-19 came to town and we all got the stay-at-home order, I found that I was sitting at a desk for most of the day with a few online classes here and there. I learned something that most of you already know, that sitting down for long periods of time sucks. Muscles began tightening up and lower back pain became more frequent.

I've only had to do a sit-down job for a few months, but if you have a job where you sit for long periods of time, I feel for ya. However, I found that by taking the time to do core work and mobility work for a few minutes every day, I was able to make a big improvement in my body's core health as well as get a flatter tummy.

This core workout video is 25 minutes long and covers a LOT of ground. The biggest reason I hear why people don't exercise on a regular basis is they don't have the time and they don't enjoy it. For the time issue, I totally get it! As a dad trying to get in shape, we have to juggle work and life, and true to form, time is tight. But I challenge any dad who can't carve out 25 minutes for self-care.

I know dads who spend an easy 25 minutes in the bathroom in the morning as "personal time" and I know that taking a dump doesn't take that long. Instead, take that time and do your core workout 2-3 days a week to take action to stay healthy and fit for your kids and your family.

Now, I know that most dads don't want to spend their sacred time doing hip mobility work and would rather spend their workout time lifting heavy things or doing cardio till they sweat like a pig because that feels like the most productive use of their time. And it is! But you are only as strong as your weakest link and for a lot of people out there, your weakest link is in your lower back.

If you have a strong core and full mobility in your lumbo pelvic hip complex, you will be able to lift more, workout harder, and make your "productive" workouts even more productive. If you are a dad with a dad bod and would like to make this year the year that you transform that dad bod into a father figure, then take the time for self-care. It will ultimately make your workouts more productive and get you more in tune with your body.

To make it easy for all my fellow dads out there, I made a 30-day program called Dad Bod Transformation. In this health and fitness course for dads, I lay it all down in an easy-to-follow 30-day course to help dads make a healthy change. Every week you get a workout program, eating strategy guide, and support. But more important than all that goodness, we take the time to address flexibility and mobility as well as create the groundwork for habit identification and creation.

The goal is that by the end of the 30 days, you will have the habit system in place to exercise daily, eat a 90% clean diet, and maintain better sleep habits. All of these steps are a part of the process that goes into making a dad bod transformation and no one action can do it alone. Put all these steps together and you begin to see a real lasting positive change like losing weight, building muscles, sleeping better, having more energy, being in a better frame of mind, and hopefully being better in bed.


Thanks for reading and I hope this workout was a good one for you. Stay healthy, stay safe, and stay awesome!


Nolan



Full transcript of the workout below ~


laying flat on your back

and we'll begin with some hip mobility

work

before we launch into the core exercises

so laying on your back we're going to

put your feet on either side of the mat

so you got like a good amount of space

in between your heels and your knees are

kind of far apart

and we're going to drop both knees over

to one side

so you got one knee kind of floating in

the air and your other knee gets really

close down to the ground taking a deep

breath so you're kind of getting a

stretch across the top part of your hip

right here

and then come on up to center and drop

both knees over to the other side

so again like you got one leg kind of

floating in the air

other knees kind of close down to the

ground and just letting the weight of

your legs

be the thing that's stretching out all

the muscles around your hip

read that one more time on each side so

getting both knees up drop and move to

the other side

just letting the weight of your legs

take it down so you kind of get that

stretch

taking a deep breath and as you exhale

let your legs be heavy

one more time come back up to center

dropping them over to the other side

the last time

holding for two breaths here

and then coming on back up and we can

bring your feet a little bit closer

together we're going to come to a set of

25 crunches straight up and down

and as you come up try and give a big

exhale

at the top of each crunch so you're kind

of emptying out your lungs

and it kind of allows you to hold the

top of the crunch for a moment

so going at your own pace going for 25

try to maintain that space between your

chin and your chest

foreign

once you finish up that set of 25 we're

going to hook your right

ankle over your left knee

and from here we're going to drop both

knees over to the right side

so you're letting the weight of that

ankle kind of provide a little bit of

pressure

on top of that hip

taking a deep breath as we continue

stretching out your lumbar

pelvic hip complex

two more breaths here

and then coming up to center we're going

to interlace your fingers

in between your thighs of the leg that's

kind of floating in the air

and then very gently we're going to pull

your legs towards your face

so we're stretching out the outside edge

of your right right bum cheek

hold here for a few breaths and we'll

pull just hard enough that you're

getting a good stretch through your hip

but not so

hard that like anything hurts hold here

for one more breath

and we'll plant that left foot down on

the floor

bring both hands behind your head and

we'll do 15

figure four crunches straight up and

down so you can use your hands to

support your head

or put your hands across your chest but

either way we're going to maintain that

space between your chin and your chest

and give a big

exhale each time you come up for the

crunch

and cool once you're done with that set

of 15

you'll just switch legs putting your

left ankle over your right knee

and then again dropping both your legs

over to the left side so you got that

ankle on top of your right knee which is

kind of providing a little bit of

pressure to push down to stretch out

through your right hip

on the top part taking a few breaths

here

and then slowly rotating back to center

you're going to slide your hands in

between your legs to grab onto the

outside edge

of your right thigh and then gently pull

your legs towards your face

so you're getting that stretch through

your left bone cheek give a little rock

side to side if you want to

two more breaths here

and then coming on down we're gonna

plant your right heel on the floor

and do figure four crunches on the other

side so going for 15 of these

either hands behind your head or across

your chest

and 15 crunches

great once you finish up that set of 15

we're going to straighten out your legs

and put your hands underneath your bum

we're going to come into a set of leg

lifts

so we're gonna do leg lifts a little bit

differently today

so as you do one leg lift that's great

and then the second one you're gonna

roll your knees into your chest

so we're gonna break it up straight leg

lift

and the knees into your chest i'm going

to go for 20 of these total

it's like that's one this is two

so going for 20. rolling through and as

you tuck your knees to your chest trying

to roll your

tailbone up off the floor and each time

you straighten out your legs try and

push your toes as far away from you as

you can

18 19

20. great

cool once you finish up your set of 20

we'll hug both knees into your chest

giving yourself a little rock side to

side massaging the muscles of your lower

back into the floor maybe draw a circle

on the ground

keeping both knees locked together we're

going to drop them both over to the left

side

so your knees are still stacked one on

top of the other we're going to bring

both arms out to either side

so that both knuckles are on the floor

from here we're going to bring your

hands behind your head and come into 15

oblique crunches so you're going to

crunch both shoulder blades up

squeezing from this part of your tummy

15 times

five six

seven

14 and 15. great

when you're done with those we'll come

back onto your back one more time both

knuckles out to either side

kind of getting that stretch through

your lower back

and then making your way to both knees

into your chest

we'll rock side to side and then we'll

drop both knees over to the right side

and repeat the whole process

so both hands coming out knees are

staying bent hands come behind your head

and then 15 oblique crunches

trying to get your right shoulder blade

up off the floor

10 11

12 13

bring both hands out to either side one

more time stretch not your lower back

making your way onto your

back one more time and a little roll

around

and then we're going to straighten out

both legs along the mat

raising your right hand over your head

we're going to try and touch your left

toe

keeping your right leg straight so

coming up

to make that connection and then coming

all the way back down we're going to do

that 15 times on each side

11 12

13 14

15. cool once all done with those we'll

switch sides

straightening both legs and then

touching your right toe with your left

hand

15 times trying to actually make the

contact

uh

wow

cool once you finish up those you're

going to come to a set of

bicycle crunches so for the bicycle

crunches

we're going to go for a set of 50 of

these and

as you straighten out your leg try and

get a good extension

through the leg that's going straight

and try and make contact to your elbow

as you come up

okay so starting whenever you're ready

going for 50

and we'll wrap through it

um

nice work jim you're getting that good

extension with the legs

nice one cool

so we're going to keep uh to collaborate

go back to stretching out your

your bum and your hips so we're going to

cross your right ankle over your left

knee

we're going to push off your left heel

raising your hips as high up to the

ceiling as you can

lower on back down we're going to do 10

of these on each leg

so going at your own pace just giving

that good strong squeeze at the top

so strong that you almost feel a stretch

on the top part of your hips

it's

once you finish your time just switch

sides same thing on the other

five

six

seven eight

nine

and ten

cool once we're all done with those

we're going to make your way onto your

hands and knees

on your mat

so with your fingertips spread wide

directly underneath your shoulders knees

under your hips

we're going to reach your right arm out

and your left foot away from you

and we're going to take in a deep breath

on the exhale connect elbow to knee

under your body

inhale to extend we're going to go for

10 of these

so you should make a connection there's

two

three

four

six

seven

nine and ten

cool once i'm done with those switching

sides

left arm out in front of you right foot

away

taking a deep breath and then on the

exhale connect elbow's knee

going for 10.

seven eight

nine and ten

cool we're gonna come all the way down

onto your belly

so we're going to come into superman to

cactus arms to strengthen your upper

and lower back so i'm start out in front

of you

we're going to fly up raising legs and

arms off the floor drag your elbows down

towards your ribs

and then straighten back out and then

lower down softly

we're gonna go for five of these going

at your own pace

and going in a range of motion that

feels good and safe to you

there's two

there's three

four

there's five

you can come all the way back and rest

in child's pose for a moment

stretching out your lower back so bring

your knees out to the side of your mat

big toes together

and then letting your bum rest down on

your heels walk your fingertips out in

front of you

and then when you're ready making your

way onto your forearms we're going to

hold a forearm plank

for 60 seconds

so pushing your upper spine

away from the mat and starting right

now so as you hold the plank try and

keep your hips level with the floor

and push your heels away from you in the

crown of your head out in front of you

as you inhale rib cage expands as you

exhale tuck your belly button into your

spine and almost like up to your heart

good we're in 30 seconds

keep the shoulders strong so you're

always pushing your heart away from the

floor

nice 15 more seconds

five four three two

one and come on down

rest in child's pose again stretching

out that lower back

just for a few breaths give your hips a

little rock

side to side

good and then whenever you're ready

coming up into a sitting position

cool and with sitting on your bone with

your feet out in front of you with your

feet slightly wider than hip width apart

hands are supporting you from the back

drop both knees over to the right side

so your knees kind of end up on the

floor and then try to sit upright

so with both knees down you're going to

inhale really tall lengthen through your

spine

take in a deep breath and exhale to

twist and look over your right shoulder

gentle spinal twist

come back to center and then twist to

look over your left shoulder

coming on back to center hands can come

back behind you

and both knees up and we'll switch sides

so drop both knees over to the left

and then rock it on up so we're getting

a good stretch right here in your

in your hips so try and sit with a

really

tall spine taking a deep breath and then

exhale to twist look over your left

shoulder spinal twist

silk over your right shoulder

come on back to center

we'll bring the soles of your feet

together

and clasping your toes just going to

flap your wings

it will rock side to side

inhale lengthen through your spine and

then exhale draw your elbows out to the

sides

to bring your forehead down towards your

toes

whenever you're ready slowly coming all

the way back up

and sitting in a comfortable position

and do one more stretch

so inhale raising both hands up over

your head

drop your right hand down by your side

and then using the support of that hand

to kind of like them through your spine

reach your left arm over

so we're stretching out all the muscles

in your lower back and your side

and your hip you can take a look up

towards the ceiling

and then pushing off the floor to come

back up to center

and then switch insides just dropping

your left hand down

finding the support of the floor

reaching your right arm over your head

rolling through the shoulders so you can

look up towards the ceiling

and then on the exhale push them back up

to center both hands come to the sky and

then

glitter fingers of happiness come

raining down all over your weekend

because it's friday yay

that's it

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