Running is high impact exercise (high compression on the joints) and is recommended for intermediate and advanced fitness level exercisers. Running will enhance the muscular strength and muscular endurance levels of the mid-torso muscle (abdominals and lower back) and lower body's muscle groups (hip, gluteals, quadriceps, hamstrings and calves).
Incorporating a modified swinging motion (forward and backwards) with the arms will help increase the exerciser's heart rate level and tone the muscles of the upper arms and shoulders. Holding weights in the hands will increase the tone of the upper arm muscles and shoulder muscles.
The speeds and incline levels for running are determined by the exerciser's fitness level and target heart rate zone. Increasing the speed and/or incline level will increase the difficulty level for the exerciser. It is recommended that the exerciser stay within their target heart rate zone.
Cycling is low impact exercise (low compression on the joints) and is recommended for any fitness level exercisers.
Cycling will enhance the muscular strength and muscular endurance levels of the mid torso muscle ( abdominals and lower back) and lower body's muscle groups ( hips, gluteals, quadriceps, hamstrings, and calves.)
Floor Abdominal Crunch
The floor abdominal crunch exercise develops muscular strength and endurance in the following muscles:
1. Lie flat on the floor or exercise mat in a supine (on the back) position with the knees bent at a 45-degree angle and the feet flat on the floor.
2. Before beginning this movement, establish a neutral pelvic tilt for protection of the lower back. A neutral pelvic tilt is performed by shifting the hips upward and backwards, thus pressing the lower back into the floor or exercise mat. This position should be held for the duration of each specific abdominal exercise.
3. Begin the exercise by placing the hands behind the base of the neck for cervical support.
Abdominal Crunch With Added Weight
Begin the exercise by placing a dumbbell or weight plate in the hands behind the base of the neck for cervical support or on the chest wall.
4. Lift the upper torso off the floor, elevating the shoulder blades 1 to 4 inches above the floor or exercise mat ( concentric contraction). Exhale while lifting the upper torso. Failure to exhale may result in dizziness or possible fainting.
5. After achieving a full contraction, slowly lower the upper torso to the original starting position. (eccentric contraction).
6. Continue the movement until desired number of repetitions are achieved.