Be Well: Squats

Squats are such a staple exercise, and yet I've noticed that many girls tend to shy away from them due to unfamiliarity with the equipment and technique. I've put together a short tutorial below to start to combat that unfamiliarity - I hope it's helpful!

Start with your weight across your back, feet shoulder-width apart.

Slowly send your hips back while you concentrate your weight in your heels and pull your toes up towards your shins. This will help you keep your knees from going too far over your ankles, which can cause injury. Additionally, keep your back flat.

Keep squatting until your upper legs are near a 90 degree angle with your lower legs.

Once you've gotten to 90 degrees, slowly rise back up. Repeat 15-20 times, rest for a minute, and then do another set.

Also of major importance - the weight of your bar. I used a 20 lb. body bar for this demonstration because that was what was available in the part of the gym where I could non-awkwardly take pictures, but I usually do squats with at least a 40 lb. bar. To be honest, I should really be squatting much more than that - you will be amazed by how naturally strong your legs are, and you should be trying to challenge them even more with this exercise.

I was in a doctor's office yesterday, and the magazine in the rack in front of me was Health. I couldn't help but notice that every single thing printed on the cover promised that you could be thinner, happier, healthier, more flexible, etc. - all in very little time with very little effort. I want to be honest here in this blog - that is just not how life works. Getting healthy, fit, and strong requires time and dedication. Much more time and dedication, in fact, than I have been putting into my own life. So let's work on this together, shall we? Let's set realistic expectations and realistic goals, and hopefully that will end up with all of us being happy with who you are while we reside in this thing called reality. My goal for tomorrow: eat lunch with my friends. It's unrealistic to expect them to always be there for you if you ignore them for weeks on end, even when you have a good excuse.

Good luck with your Wednesday goals!