Training for life: Two core exercises that will make Captain America jealous

I don't actually think Captain American gets jealous, as that probably goes against his general humility. But we are less than a week out from the new Captain American movie.

My household is split between Captain America and Iron Man....

My household is split between Captain America and Iron Man....

Six days people. Can you even stand it?

I was more of a Batman fan growing up, but then they changed Batmans 50 times and Chris Evans took over the Captain America role. Ok, mostly Chris Evans took over the role and I could stare at his blue eyes all day long. 

Let's just hope that it's better than Batman vs. Superman which earned negative stars. 

One thing that never gets negative stars is a good core exercise that makes it hard to wash you hair in the morning. (How's that for a transition Doc?*)

No I don't want it to be painful to reach your hands over your head and do the wave at your next minor league baseball game. But getting your core work in is important, as I mentioned here and here. And these two exercises are a good way to make brushing your teeth agony.

And strengthen the core to protect the spine and start developing those abs. 

Bodysaws with Valslides

Valsides are a brand of sliders that you may or may not find at your gym. My last gym didn't have them and I left paper plates in my gym bag which worked just fine.

Who I stole this from: Pretty much everywhere, again, but this was in one of my recent programs from Tony Bonvechio, which reminded me how much I hated it. Thanks Tony!

To perform the exercise: Set up in the low plank position (on your elbows not your hands) and place the sliders under your feet. Shift your weight back and forth in a sawing motion using only your arms to move back and forth on the sliders. You'll notice in the video below that I'm not exactly moving very far. 

Key cue: Avoid using your hips to move the sliders, which is an easy habit to fall into. Concentrate on staying in the plank position and using your forearms to initiate the movement.

Excellent anterior core exercise. If your gym doesn't have Valslides or sliders you can also use paper plates or card stock, or substitute in a TRX or stability ball.

If you don't have a pair of sliders or paper plates handy, you can also use a swiss ball or stability ball to perform the same movement. 


Anterior core exercise is just a fancy way of saying working on your abs. 


And if you'd like to up the ante a little and add some more variety, you can throw this variation in that I stole from Ben Bruno. Grab a pair of dumbbells and the sliders. Perform a renegade row on each side, then pull yourself forward with the dumbbells. Rinse and repeat. You can do this for distance or repetitions. 

I saw this exercise on Ben Bruno's Instagram feed and loved it. If you don't have sliders at your gym, paper plates will do.

And now we're even closer to the premiere of the new Captain Merica movie. 


*Doc is Dr. Marsters, my favorite college writing professor and mentor.