Handstands Flip Your Workout on its Head — Part 1

Summer Olympics are just around the corner, so why not add some gymnastics moves to your workout and challenge yourself?

In the next four blogs I will write about four moves from my “The Slimnastics Workout” book and DVD to get you holding your own weight, strengthening your upper back and arms, and improving your posture. Today is forearm stand, next week will be the L stand, then handstand and flip dog/​rockstar to wheel. You get one new move to add to your workout every week this month!

Forearm Stand:

Move to a wall, turn to face it and get onto your hands and knees. Place your palms on the floor near the wall and line up your elbows on the floor as well, directly behind the hands.

Trainer’s Tip: The perfect distance for the hands is shoulder width. You can measure this by keeping your elbows on the floor and wrapping your hands around your triceps. If your fingers cannot curl around your arms, you should bring your elbows and hands in closer until they can.

After measuring, place the palms back on the floor with the fingertips pointing to the wall just a few inches away from the wall. Reaching the hips off the floor, your body can form an upside-​​down V—similar to down dog and dolphin poses. Walk your feet in as close as you can to your elbows.

It is critical to look at your fingertips, not your knees.

Kick one leg up and then the other in quick succession so they come directly over your elbows or into the wall behind you. Remember to tighten your core and keep looking at your fingertips for alignment and balance.

If your legs are against the wall, slowly bring them away from it and over you, focusing your mind and pushing your forearms and shoulders forcefully into the floor.

Hover in forearm stand for up to a minute, then lower the legs to your mat and recover in child’s pose.

Also, you can watch a sample of Slimnastics DVD and Book by clicking on the Slimnastics tab on the upper left part of this web page.

Fit Fitness in with Fido!

Dog obesity is a problem just like it is for humans, so you can work out on both fronts with these fun ideas and enjoy quality time with your best friend. It won’t feel like a workout and you will add some cross training to your week by doing the following play dates with your pet.


Sprints — (Good for dogs of all sizes.) You can throw a dog toy and race other to get it! Good for backyards if you don’t have a running trail nearby. The intervals will help burn far and boost metabolism. You can also combine sprints with the muscle moves below

Endurance — run in a leash. Best with larger dogs who can keep up. Run along an area that has water fountains you can cup your hands in so the dog can drink or bring a collapsible bowl so the dog doesn’t get dehydrated.


Basic intervals — Just get out there several times a day. Work up to 2–3 walks of 20 mins each for an hour of cardio. Good for many size dogs depending in their energy level. For dogs that pull in the leash, work up to endurance runs or sprints above.

Workout Walk — go for an hour straight with your pup and find somewhere with hills. You can walk up forward and uphill backwards to burn different muscles. The dog might not walk backwards but will think you are funny doing it. You might even teach him the trick of walking backwards himself!

Muscle toning/​weight training:

Do lunges with the dog as you walk. Then have him sit while you squat and do calf raises! Aim for 50 lunges and 50 squat raises And teaches obedience.

If you have a small dog, you can have her jump up to bite a stick. You hold either end and do a biceps curl with doggie attached. Lower arms and let dog release grasp. Do 10 at a time.

Another small dog exercise is triceps dips off the sidewalk or a step with doggie in your lap. He will like the elevator ride.


Head to the dog park or playground and run around the equipment. You can even set up your own obstacle course with cones to run around, jump over, and hurdles. Put a treat at the end of the course or give a treat for each completed obstacle


Teach your dog to do down and up dog. Then do planks over him while he is laying down. Do seated stretches with little dog in your lap. You can both lay down and practice happy doggie (happy baby pose) and final relaxation. Just don’t do tree pose so you don’t get mistaken for a potty target!

Fitness — Fit it in! Nikki

7 Summer Survival Products



Oakley is combining the comfortable aspects of comfort and performance sports sunglasses with the chic look of designer glasses. You can save your eyes while jogging and still look hot too! They are lightweight, with special hidden padding and slip protection around the nose and ears. I like the overtime and urgency lines for women and the scalpel or blender for men. ($130) http://​www​.oakley​.com/​s​t​o​r​e​/​p​r​o​d​u​c​t​s​/​w​o​m​e​n​/​s​u​n​g​l​a​s​s​e​s​/​a​c​tive


I would make shakes more often if I didn’t have to clean the mixer by hand. Now I’m having them every morning with my new find! BlenderBottle SportMixer, the number one selling shaker cup in the market, invented the portable mixer. Fitness buffs love the product because they can easily mix up an after-​​workout shake or healthy snack without having to use an electric blender. The BlenderBottle’s secret is in its patented BlenderBall wire whisk ball, which can whip up ingredients like peanut butter, yogurt, apple sauce, fruit juice, milk, and powder supplements. It not only works as a portable mixer, but doubles as a leak-​​proof water bottle for hydration on-​​the-​​go. It comes in tons of fun colors, its BPA-​​free, and dishwasher safe ($14.99) http://​www​.blenderbottle​.com/


Hero Energy Shot was created to honor the millions of heroes that dedicate their lives to making our country safe. The drink is vitamin fortified, long lasting, sugar free, and doesn’t result in a sugar crash. I love the extra vitamin B, so I don’t need my supplement. I am a tea drinker, so I took half of a tasty berry shot in the morning and half in the afternoon. If you drink coffee, one full 2 oz shot will definitely energize you in the morning! A minimum of 10% from every purchase results in a donation to nonprofit organizations that support the armed forces, police, firefighters, and EMTs. (You can get a free sample, or order a 12-​​pack for $24) www​.heroenergyshot​.com


When you are not hiking, running or biking this summer, you should take care of your feet. Sneakers are not enough if you are creating fallen arches and blisters the rest of your day! I was never a huge Birkenstock fan even though the rest of my family all swears by them… until I was introduced to their fashionable new line of colors at the Fitness Magazine blogger event. Now my toenails are painted turquoise (scuba blue they call it) to match my new supportive shoes, and my feet get to breathe on hot days! They also have a new super comfort line (men will love this) that is the traditional shoe but with padding on the sole! Be “naturally good” to your feet with every color in the rainbow, even metallics and strappy options for women at http://​www​.birkenstockusa​.com/ (Birko style pictured, $59.95)


Have you lost weight through hard work and exercise, or had a baby, but your skin has not bounced back to it’s original tight shape? I have looked for skin tightening belly and body creams for a while, many readers ask about them, and I myself know about the baby belly skin stretch. Most of the products out there are for cellulite or stretch marks. Finally I found Vichy Destock Stomach. With Pure caffeine, Yerba Mate and Green Coffee Extract it refines and firms your skin. ($36.50 for a large bottle) Available at Duane Reade, CVS, Walgreen’s and at www​.vichyusa​.com

Sports Sac

When I run a race or work out at the gym, I shower fast but do the laundry slow. I often leave clothes in a bag and go out to celebrate or head to work. Tide has created some ingenious bags to keep the funk of running and working out away. Tide created the Tide Odor-​​Absorbing Sports Bag (in gray and black) – so you won’t leave a trail of odors as you leave the gym or the track! They also have a travel laundry bag (light and dark blue) that I use when I pack my Fit Travel Workout DVD (The 30– minute no-​​equipment workout that was shot around the world! www​.nikkifitness​.com ) and work out on the road! http://​tidecare​.com/​p​r​o​d​u​c​ts/ Available at Target.


I can’t work out without some distraction, either fast music, a great view, or a book! Not in my hands but in my ears. Either read fiction, non-​​fiction or, a new find, ameditation audiobook by Andy Puddicombe called GET SOME HEADSPACE: ($29.99) http://​us​.macmillan​.com/​b​o​o​k​.​a​s​p​x​?​i​s​b​n​=​9​7​8​1​4​2​7​2​2​1​933

It’s a really great way to “zen” yourself before heading out to the beach and throwing your cares away!

Fitness – fit it in this summer! Nikki