Stand, inhale deeply, and raise your arms up to the sky; exhale, lower them, and repeat 2 times.
How to do it
Stand with your feet hip-width apart, arms by your sides. As you start inhaling, raise your arms straight out from your sides and up above your head, with your palms facing each other. Imagine yourself getting taller! Exhale as you slowly drop your arms back down to your sides. Repeat two more times, inhaling deeply and exhaling fully as you do.
Why it matters
Stretching your arms above your head while breathing deeply is often part of a warm up in aerobics classes because it starts preparing the body for activity by increasing blood flow and heart rate. It also serves as a cool down to slow your heart rate back down before you stop moving. And since this move increases the amount of oxygen in your body, it’s a perfect perk-up activity you can do anytime!
Dr. Kenneth Cooper is credited for coining the word “aerobics” to describe certain types of exercise that increase respiration and circulation. In 1968, his first book, simply titled “Aerobics,” became a worldwide bestseller.
While you are doing this stretch you should do the neck roll from the Day 2 Challenge. I cannot stress enough the importance of getting up periodically while you are working online. These challenges have been wonderful for me, at least the stretching anyways, because I get so busy writing and catching up with family and friends I don’t think about the strain I am putting on myself. Soon as I go to bed though I feel the pain from sitting too long.
Even though I get up and do other things while I am online, I still forget to do some stretches to relieve the tension. Lord knows staring at a computer screen not only strains your neck, back and shoulders it also strains your eyes.
So get up… stretch, do the neck roll, and incorporate a few toe touches. Then stand back up, close your eyes and focus on your breathing; imagine all the stress and pain flowing out of your body with every exhale. You will feel so much better afterwards and it will also give your eyes some time to readjust and de-stress. I would suggest doing this once every hour. Now let’s hope I remember to do it all day everyday as well. Here’s to one more day of being healthier!
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