Full work days, countless tasks and little downtime are not an excuse to overlook health and fitness. Cleaning, repairing, tending to guests, entertaining, laundry and cooking; combined with little sleep, hot weather, stress and other physical and environmental factors on a boat can leave you feeling tired and low on energy.
When faced with these busier seasons, crew need to focus on keeping their bodies healthy and fit so they can continue performing at their optimum level. In addition to trying to get enough sleep or fitting in a nap when possible, crew also need to keep themselves well nourished and hydrated; this means water, not caffeine. It is important to fit in exercise which will help to increase your energy without having to reach for another cup of coffee or Red Bull.
The following energy boosting workout/stretch can be accomplished in 8-10 minutes, with no equipment and barely uses any space. So whether you are in the crew quarters, engine room or have a few minutes on the deck to yourself, try to fit this in.
Jog in place- 30-45 sec
High knees- 30-45 sec
Butt Kicks- 30-45 sec
Alternating forward lunges- 30-45 sec
Imaginary jump rope
No rope needed- just pretend.
When you get into the squat position this time, really power up, jump as explosively as you can, throwing your hands up overhead. Lower yourself back into squat position and repeat.
Start in a push-up position but keep hands directly under shoulders. Bend your knee and jump up, bringing your right thigh under your right side of your torso, left leg is straight behind. As fast as you can jump your right leg back into starting position while you bring your left knee in toward your torso and keep repeating quickly, making sure to keep your butt down.
Position yourself chest-down on the floor, palms directly under the elbows and slightly wider than shoulder width, feet together and extended behind you. Holding your body and head steady and keeping your abdominal muscles tight, bend elbows until they reach a 90-degree angle to lower yourself to the floor, then straighten your arms until your body is hovering over the floor.
Standing up straight. Clasp your hands behind your back with your palms facing up. This should bring your chest forward. Squeeze your shoulder blades together, keeping your shoulders relaxed which will emphasize the stretch even more.
Reach your right arm across your chest with your upper arm close to your collarbone. Place your left hand on your right elbow, and pull your right arm closer to your body to stretch the shoulder. Repeat on the other side.
Seated hamstrings stretch
Sit on the ground; keep your right leg extended in front of you. Bend your left leg, bringing the bottom of your foot in to touch the inside of your right leg. Interlock your fingers and reach toward the toes of your extended right leg and hold the stretch. Repeat on the other side.
Lying piriformis stretch
Lie on your back and cross your right leg over your left knee as if you were sitting in a chair. Grab under your left knee, let your foot come off of the ground. With both hands and pull your knee toward your chest until you feel a stretch in your right hamstring as well as in your buttocks.
Don’t forget to sneak these in where and when you can.
Beth Greenwald received her masters degree in exercise physiology from Florida Atlantic University and is a certified personal trainer. She conducts both private and small group training sessions in the Ft. Lauderdale area. Contact her at +1 716-908-9836 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Comments on this column are welcome at email@example.com.