Being a huge supporter of straight faces and little to no human interaction during this time of year due to stress, I find it hard to crack a genuine smile. All of my family pictures during the holidays are forced. The difference between a fake versus a real smile, you ask? For me, I show as little pearly white as possible. When I do have to smile (usually the photographer acts like we’re all babies and he’s the cheese), I usually jut out a body part (like a hip or an arm on side) to make it look more believeable. For me, that means it’s a total farse of a picture.
I know you are all probably thinking I’m a terrible person, but I disdain forced pictures. Every one comes out looking the same every year, adding more wrinkles or some extra weight, so what’s the friggin’ point?
For my end of the year goal, I plan to actually smile and feel genuine while doing it. I decided to also model a small group of exercises after this as well.
The S. M. I. L. E. Workout!
Step-Touch. Most basic move. Begin standing with feet a part and step right foot in then left. Repeat for 30 seconds. For increased intensity, jump the feet together and out, like a modified jumping jack.
Mountain Climbers. Excellent for all abdominal muscles. Begin in push-up position on the floor. Bring right knee into chest, then left knee. Continue alternating for 25-30 reps or 30 seconds. To increase the intensity, you may also want to bring your knee into your chest then knee out to side to work more obliques. Be sure to keep the back straight, booty aligned with the spine, and look in front of you not at the floor below.
Isometric Wall Sit. These are an oldie but a goodie. I’m sure this takes you back to circuit training in gym class. This was the station in which I partook in more gabbing and resting than sitting. But really- it’s a great posture, balance, and strength exercise. Grab a wall space and bend knees into 90 degree angle squatting position. Be sure to keep back straight and flat against the wall. If you have bad knees or joints, be sure to modify this by just walking in place or holding a plank. Hold this sitting position for 30 seconds.
Leg Warmers. If you don’t own any leg warmers, then these are the perfect way to naturally warm them up. Begin in a standing position, feet shoulder width a part. Take one foot and kick across the body and then swing back into a curtsy lunge. Repeat on other side. Do this for 30 seconds to one minute.
Extend Your Torso. Final stretch! Excellent way to stretch and even lengthen your muscles. Lie flat on the ground, hands stretched above your head. Legs flat. Just simply reach as if you were reaching for the sky while standing. You did it! You deserve that minute of blissful muscle relaxation.
Not smiling in any of these pictures. In my defense, they weren’t holiday themed, so I’m still untouchable until after Christmas at least…
How’s everyone’s holiday prep going? Christmas shopping- done for me. Now it’s onto my personal favorite-baking!
Peace, love, and smiling! 🙂