Q: My wrists bother me during planks and push-ups. Any tips?
A: First, focus on using your entire upper body to share more of the load: It’s common during those movements to put all your weight into your wrist joints instead of engaging your chest, triceps, back and lat muscles. If that doesn’t do the trick, try using dumbbells: Place the weights on the floor (where your palms would typically be) so you can grab them like handles and skip flexing your wrists all together.
Q: I took a class with practically no rest between all-out bursts. Is that too intense?
A: Not at all! Putting yourself through difficult workouts gives your body a chance to be challenged—and therefore change. Many interval classes are structured to save the rest until you’ve done a full circuit of, say, six back-to-back moves. It’s just a way to extend the higher-intensity push to build your cardio capacity and endurance. That doesn’t mean you should be going at 1,000 percent with reckless abandon, though. Instead, figure out what makes the most sense so that you can go consistently strong—maybe that’s staying at 80 to 90 percent of your max effort (or whatever you can maintain) during class.
Jen Widerstrom, Transformational Expert
Your daily get-fit motivator and television star is the global partner of SHAPE Women’s Activewear Collection, Fitness Director of SHAPE Magazine, and the best-selling author of Diet Right for Your Personality Type. You can also catch Jen, Transformational Expert, on her 2018 Live / Give Tour now!