The Best Exercise is the Exercise You’re Doing
Resistance training expert offers advice on making working out work for you
Thursday, May 14, 2020
Four illustrations of Dominic Morais doing exercises

Once the COVID-19 pandemic hit, it seemed like I couldn’t go a day without hearing what I should be doing for my health. Eat this and not that; sit for this amount of time and stand for this amount; add supplements and essential oils to your lifestyle. In a world that constantly fights for our attention, I like to boil things down to “simple” guidelines to help declutter my mind. One of those guidelines is: The best exercise is the exercise you’re doing.

Stress comes in many forms in life, including exercise. So, at the end of the day, if I’m not looking forward to my exercise, then I’m doing it wrong. As long as there is some balance in health and fitness regimens, we would benefit from dropping our perfectionist approach toward wellness. If you like to take walks, then I say you take those walks. If you like to lift heavy deadlifts, then I say you keep going beastmode. 

I like resistance training as a form of exercise. I enjoy the feedback it provides in helping me make a mental connection with my body. This type of attitude is not new; the motto of sound mind in a sound body—mens sana in corpore sano—goes all the way back to the ancient Greeks. For those who want to dip into resistance and bodyweight training during these wildly odd and turbulent times, give these six categories of movement patterns a try.

Stand tall, and push up on a resistance band by extending your arms above your head, keeping them under control.

The basic push-up: Keeping your body long and your core tight, lower your body almost all the way to the ground and press back up again.

Keep your hips high and your shins nearly vertical as you use the back side of your body to pull a weight from the ground.

Keep a big chest and your hips back as you bend your knees past parallel and back up again.

The plank: Similar to a push-up but on your elbows, breathe in and out while keeping your body tightly connected in a straight line.

Sitting with your feet and knees together and feet off the ground, slowly rotate your upper body and look at the ground on each side.

Dominic Morais, Ph.D., is an assistant professor in the School of Business at Trinity, specifically teaching courses in sport management, sport history, and sport sociology.

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